Maryland is another state that is affected by a transient population that works in Washington, D.C. This makes it a politically charged state, but what does that mean for the gambling industry? The state is home to many professional and amateur sports teams, and with a generous population, you would think that gambling would be big business here. Let’s evaluate the current gambling laws in the state and what influence being close to the center of the federal government could have on future legislation.
Sports Betting in Maryland
As we mentioned, sports are big in Maryland. Not only do you have the local teams in Baltimore and the college teams that have a big following, but the state is close enough to other states to have fan bases of external teams as well. With all of this in mind, you would think that sports betting would be very popular, and while it may be, it is all happening outside of current law. Now that the Supreme Court has stricken down the law that stopped states from offering sports betting, many east coast states like New Jersey have rushed to regulate the industry. Initial numbers have been very positive, and this is putting pressure on states like Maryland to follow suit with legislation. Unfortunately it looks like it will be impossible for a law to be voted on before 2020 due to the nature of the political process in Maryland.
Online Sports Betting
While waiting for regulated locations to place bets, Maryland residents have the option of playing at the sportsbooks of New Jersey while they are physically present in the state. Unfortunately it means that it is not very convenient and will probably be a better experience to just visit a New Jersey Casino to gamble at.
Sports Betting laws are being considered in Maryland and it is very likely that sports gambling could become a reality in the state in 2020. Unfortunately the opportunity to pass it in 2019 was missed as the new law is supposed to be a constitutional amendment which requires the people to vote on it directly. There are no elections scheduled in 2019, meaning that there is no opportunity for the people of Maryland to vote on the question.
Once it does, the expert team at Betting News will review all of the options to provide a list of recommended sites open to Maryland residents. This is a list that will contain some names that may recognizable and others you may be reading for the first time. Our reviewers don’t play favorites – every site goes through the same comprehensive testing as a review is written, and this objectivity allows us to bring you brutally honest reviews and ratings. The sites on this list will have all passed through the testing process and come out the other side with flying colors. We think that the combination of bet options, promotions and payment processing speed sets these online sportsbooks ahead of the competition. You can rest assured that these are the best sportsbooks that you will find online.
Horse Betting in Maryland
Maryland has a long, rich history with horse racing. Today, one leg of the Triple Crown, the top prize in the industry, is held in Maryland. The Preakness Stakes is the second leg of the three-race event, and many times sets up the drama of a potential Triple Crown winner. As you can imagine, betting on this event is higher than most of the other races in the state. However, pari-mutuel betting is very popular and has people betting on horses all year round. There are races held hat several tracks in the state, and each of these facilities also shows races from other tracks around the U.S. and Canada via simulcast. Players can bet on these races at the facility, or at any of the handful of off-track betting locations in the state.
Online Horse Betting
Although the horse racing industry is doing well in Maryland, the pari-mutuel licenses have not been extended to include internet betting yet, so if you are someone who wants to bet on the horse from your home or mobile device, you have to go elsewhere. Companies like Twinspires and DRF Bets take pari-mutuel bets from Maryland residents, and each site allows bettors to watch races right from their web page via a live stream.
Casino Gambling in Maryland
The good news for casino enthusiasts in Maryland is that there are some land-based options for getting your fix of slots and table games. It did take some time to get laws passed for casino gambling, and the first casino opened its doors in 2010. Since then, another property has opened, and now players can head to either facility to take their shot at a progressive jackpot.
Online Casinos in Maryland
While online casinos are currently not regulated in the state, there could be movement on this sooner than later. Both New Jersey and Delaware have passed online casino legislation, and their proximity to Maryland may have an effect on the decision made by the state government, especially in light of the likely conversation about regulating the sports betting market.
Lottery in Maryland
Another gambling vertical that is very profitable is the lottery. The Maryland Lottery has been around for decades, and during its existence, it has raised a ton of money for great causes in the state. From a player perspective, the lottery couldn’t be more convenient. There are retailers all over the state, and residents of Maryland are able to purchase tickets to several daily draw games there. However, the big carrot is the massive jackpot that is pulled together by the pooled tickets of Mega Millions and Powerball. These jackpots often reach into the 9 figure range and have recently eclipsed the billion-dollar mark. This is life-changing money which is no doubt why these games are as popular as they are today. There are also scratch tickets which give you a chance to instantly win a prize for as little as $1 per play.
Is sports betting legal in Maryland?
No, sports betting is not legal in Maryland. With it being regulated in neighbor states like New Jersey and Delaware, there have been some conversations that have started regarding the plans for Maryland to enter the fray. However, for now, the only sports betting that takes place in the state is either via online sportsbooks or through the neighborhood bookie on the street corner. These betting methods being illegal, it is best for Maryland residents to travel to New Jersey if they want to place bets today.
When will sports betting be legal in Maryland?
Even though the pressure is mounting on the state to throw their hat into the regulated sports betting ring, it seems that it will not be possible for it to happen in the new 2019 legislative session. Despite it being a state issue, there are enough federal politicians living in Maryland that they could impact the discussion and the drafting of a bill. Still, we think that tax revenue will win out in the end, and every month that New Jersey puts out their positive figures, Maryland will inch closer to tabling a bill. We think there will be a bill passed in 2020 and that sports betting will be legal before the start of the 2020 NFL season.
What is the best online sportsbook for residents of Maryland?
Today, there are no online sportsbooks licensed in Maryland. Therefore all available options are illegal. When new laws pass, there will be a list of Maryland-licensed online sportsbooks and we will review each of them to give you complete and useful information about each of them. No matter what, you want to find a site that has a great mobile offering, as well as one that offers the most bets on the games you want to choose. Aside from that, it comes down to design preference and user interface. From the list of recommended sportsbooks or by reading some more reviews, you will no doubt find the best online sportsbook for your needs.