Montana is one of the most breathtaking states in the country. With huge mountain ranges and wide open spaces, you can sometimes feel like you are in a completely different country. However, with the popularity of their college sports teams and the real cowboy image of the state, you are quickly reminded that this state is still part of the Union. Let’s have a look at the gambling laws in Montana and if they reflect some of their neighboring states.
Sports Betting in Montana
Most people these days want to talk about sports betting as it is now up to each state to make it legal or not. In the wake of the Supreme Court’s repeal of PASPA in May 2018, there have been a few states on the east coast that have rushed right into regulated sports betting. This has come with some growing pains, so states like Montana can take the key learnings into consideration before deciding on their course of action. For the time being, sports betting remains illegal in the state.
Online Sports Betting
Just because you cant make a bet legally in Montana doesn’t mean you can’t wager on your favorite team or sport. For over two decades, gamblers in the United States have been able to visit any of the dozens of online sportsbooks that have been set up outside the US to remain an arm’s length away from U.S. authorities. These sites are in violation of the laws in the U.S., and therefore it is not adviseable to deal with them. Your money is at risk and betting is not worth it if you are uncertain to receive your winnings…
It is probable that laws will change soon in Montana however and that we will see the large gambling companies of the world come in to claim licenses in a newly regulated online sports betting market in Montana.
when they do, we will review each of the available options in Montana to offer a list of the best online sportsbooks. What matters to us more than anything is that your experience with a sportsbook is safe and enjoyable. Our review team looks at the details of every site, ensuring that there are no red flags or surprises that you could encounter after making a deposit. Of course, high on that list is the speed at which sites pay the winners.
Horse Betting in Montana
Montana is a state that seems to have more horse than people. While that is a bit of an exaggeration, the horse culture is very strong in the state, and this spreads to betting on the horses as well. Live racing fans will be a bit disappointed – there are only a handful of live race days in the year in Montana. However, there are several off-track betting facilities spread across the state, and each offers simulcasts from tracks all over North America, and pari-mutuel betting on all the tracks that are being broadcast.
Online Horse Betting
Montana residents don’t need to go to an off-track facility to make their horse bets – thanks to some sites that are based outside the borders of Montana, betting can take place online. There are companies like Twinspires or DRFBets (owned by the Daily Racing Form) that are licensed in Oregon but are allowed to accept players from many other states. This seems to be a bit of a loophole but as long as Montana residents can take advantage, then who cares!
Casino Gambling in Montana
With a whole lot of land, not a lot of people and not much else to do, there is a real need for forms of entertainment in Montana, and casino gambling seems to have filled that need. The state has actually been quite liberal when it comes to the different games that are considered legal. First, there is a compact between the state and multiple Native American tribes, allowing these tribes to have Class II casinos on their lands. These casinos are full-blown casinos with table games and slot machines. Also, the state has opted to allow Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs) which are similar in nature to slot machines. These, however, classified as a lottery game and therefore can be hosted in bars and taverns. To date, there are about 3,000 of these machines spread out across the state. Finally, the state has allowed bingo halls and Keno to be legal in the state as well.
Online Casinos in Montana
Strangely, even though the state has regulated many different types of casino-style games, these licenses do not extend into online gambling. This leaves the door wide open for the many unregulated online casinos that have decided to operate outside of the U.S. laws. Just like for online sportsbook, Montana residents should avoid gambling with offshore operators, it is just not worth the risk.
Soon enough, laws will change and licensed online casinos will become available in Montana. The Betting News experts will comb through all the details of these online casinos to propose ratings of each available website.
Now, you may wonder what goes into our ratings and recommendations for online casinos, so let’s fill in the blanks. First and foremost, we look for the credibility of a site. If a site doesn’t seem to have a lot of complaints in player forums, that is a great start. Then we look at the software being used, and whether there is a full suite of games available for players. From there we test the mobile version of the casino for those players that like to play on the go. Finally, we look at the promotions and VIP programs to find the sites that help you get the most out of your deposits. After reviewing a few more details, our experts are able to confidently recommend the online casinos you see on this list.
Lottery in Montana
It should come as no surprise that lottery games are very popular in Montana. You already know that VLTs are a big part of the action, as they are in hundreds of locations in the state, The Montana Lottery was established in 1987 and has raised millions of dollars for funding of education programs in the state. Players in Montana can play daily draw games open to state residents, along with the big jackpot games like Powerball. There is also a series of lottery games based on football and dozens of active scratch ticket possibilities for Montanans to choose from.
Montana Gambling FAQ
Is sports betting legal in Montana?
Sports betting today is not legal in Montana, but that is the same as many of the states in the country. Until May 2018, all other states outside of Nevada were prohibited from offering legal sportsbooks, but with the repeal of that law in May, it is a race in many states to regulate and launch. The love of sports in Montana (and the lack of much else to do) could push the state into action.
When will sports betting be legal in Montana?
Again, this really comes down to how quickly the state government acts on writing a bill. Now that the legal shackles are off, Montana could have regulated sports betting in a few short months. Our guess, however, is that the state will hang on for a while to see what other states around it choose to do. We aren’t ruling out legislation in 2019, but if we were to have to make a call, we’d say that there will be legislation tabled in early 2020, and betting starting by that fall.
What is the best online sportsbook for residents of Montana?
Today, there are no legal online sportsbooks in Montana so we can only explain our opinion of what makes a great site in general. Most sportsbooks tend to offer the same core products and bets but that does not make them equal in quality. So, what makes the best sportsbook for Montana residents? Let’s start with one that focuses on college sports, seeing that they are so popular in the state. Then, it really comes down to what site allows you to make your bets as easily as possible – we hate hearing that people can’t get their bets in because of a poor user interface. Finally, great customer service and bonus offers show that the website cares about its players so this is a very important factor in our rankings.