Known more for its coastline and wine regions, Oregon is a hotbed of gambling activity, which can be seen in the current legal climate in the state. With changes happening on a federal level when it comes to sports betting in 2018, it will be interesting to see where Oregon finds itself in the coming years. Here is a look at all the current gambling laws in Oregon.
Sports Betting in Oregon
As we stated in our introduction, the legal landscape for sports betting in the United States changed in May 2018 as the Supreme Court repealed a law preventing states outside Nevada from offering regulated sportsbooks. This change in position resulted in many states passing their own laws and regulations and a handful of states beginning to offer sports betting in 2018. Oregon, however, has not taken that stance yet, so for the time being there are no regulated sportsbooks in the state. Interestingly, Oregon could have started operations even earlier as it was one of the few states that opted out of PASPA from the get go. The state never pulled the trigger except for a discontinued NFL lottery game. We are willing to bet that a new sports betting options will be introduced in 2019 however, with the Oregon Lottery leading the charge.
Online Sports Betting
With no land-based legal sportsbooks, it is obvious to understand that there are no legal online sportsbooks in the eyes of the Oregon government. Oregon residents that want to place a bet on their favorite local college or pro team have to do so illegally at the moment. It is very likely to change in 2019 as the Oregon State lottery itself is planning something, maybe integrated with its mobile phone app. It remains to be seen what form online sports betting will take in Oregon but in all likelihood, Oregonians will be able to place legal sports bets before the start of the 2019 NFL season.
Horse Betting in Oregon
Oregon has always been a state that is in favor of horse racing and pari-mutuel activities, although there is only one live track in the state. Horse racing enthusiasts are reliant on simulcast broadcasts from tracks across the continent. While there is only the one racetrack, there are many off-track betting facilities in Oregon that offer pari-mutuel betting to residents.
Online Horse Betting
Where Oregon seems to be the most gambling-friendly is in the area of online horse betting. Years ago, the state decided to take a very liberal stance on the online pari-mutuel world, offering licensing and an operator-friendly environment.
As a result, many operators have taken up residence in Oregon, and while they are licensed in that state, they are allowed to offer their services to residents of any state that does not explicitly have laws prohibiting pari-mutuel betting. Companies like DRF Bets, Twinspires and Xpressbet which are known across the country are all set up in Oregon, and for now they continue to operate in as many states as possible to give bettors a chance to put money down on their favorite horse or track from around the country.
Casino Gambling in Oregon
There is a very healthy land-based casino industry in Oregon, all of which is managed and controlled by the tribal nations in the state. Back in the 1990s the state entered a compact with the tribes to allow them to offer gaming on their land, and now there is everything from bingo halls to full-service casinos for Oregon residents to visit. There have been attempts to create a licensing structure for the private sector to get involved in the casino industry, but these have never made it through the voting process.
Online Casinos in Oregon
None of the tribal casinos in Oregon are allowed to offer online games for real money under their current compact, and there does not seem to be any indication that there will be a renegotiation of the terms in the future. This forces residents of the state to play with the online casinos based outside the U.S. Unfortunately, these websites are completely outside of the laws of the USA as well and therefore offer no player protection and fraud is rampant.
Once the sports betting portion is taken care off, we are willing to bet that Oregon will pass laws authorizing the operation of online casinos in the state. Maybe these Oregon licensed online casinos will be run by the state lottery or maybe by the Tribes (who will certainly want a piece of the action). In any case, it is very unlikely that Oregon does not modernize its laws soon to allow for online casino gambling.
Lottery in Oregon
The Oregon Lottery is one of the oldest in the country, having been launched back in 1984. Since then, players in the state have been able to choose from many different games including daily draw games like Pick 3 which have become very popular. Oregon is part of the pooled group of states that offer jackpot games like Mega Millions, giving players the chance to change their lives with a prize that has creeped up into the ten-figure range!
Oregon Gambling FAQ
Is sports betting legal in Oregon?
Today, there are no legal sports betting options in the state but technically sports betting is legal. Because of the absence of legal options, there are still many people who bet on their favorite teams with local bookies or illegal online sportsbooks. Thankfully, it appears that the Oregon lottery is planning to start offering sports betting to residents soon.
When will sports betting be legal in Oregon?
Given that the state seems quite progressive when it comes to regulating other forms of gambling, we believe that we will see sports betting launched in 2019. What is unclear at this time is how the tribes will be involved, and if this will require a renegotiation of their compact with the state. This could extend the legislative process, but we still think there will be online bets taken in Oregon before the end of the calendar year.
What is the best online sportsbook for residents of Oregon?
Finding the best online sportsbook comes down to personal preference. We can tell you that there are factors that are common across all types of gamblers – the right bet types, the pricing of the bets, and the mobile versions of the sites come to mind. However, each site has a different look to it, and the user journey changes as well. It is important that you take a site for a test run before you pull out your wallet. If you want some key information about all the legal betting options available, you should check out our Review section where we go into more detail about the sites open to American gamblers.