Despite an absolutely enormous sports culture, sports betting is not legal in Texas.
Historically, the Lone Star State has maintained a firm stance against gambling in almost all forms and though there are indications of a change, Texans shouldn’t hold their breath waiting for legal sports betting to arrive anytime soon.
But, there are a couple of exceptions. While standard sports gambling is not allowed, websites providing daily fantasy sports, for example DraftKings and FanDuel are allowed to operate in the state.
Early in 2019 a state lawmaker registered a brand new Texas sports gambling bill to allow in-person and mobile sports betting and while it looks amazing on paper, it faces a couple of big challenges. More importantly in another section.
In this guide we’ll take a deep dip into Texas sports betting laws to reply:
When will you be able to bet on sports lawfully in Texas?
What’s the new Texas sports gambling bill H 1275 all about?
How will people in Texas have the ability to wager on sports if it will become legal?
We will also delve into the questions of whether it’s legal to bet on daily fantasy sports (DFS) at Texas and how the state’s enormous professional and college sports culture will play into the legal sports betting industry we may one day see grow in the Lone Star State.
Best Legal Betting Options at Texas
$10 Welcome Bonus*
With your first deposit of $5 or more
Daily Fantasy Sports
$5 Welcome Bonus
With your initial deposit of $5 or more
Daily Fantasy Sports
*Qualification restrictions apply. See website for details. Bonus is at DK Dollars.
Texas Sports Betting Bill Filed Feb 1, 2019 (H 1275)
On February 1, 2019, Rep. Eddie Lucio III filed H 1275, the first sports betting bill in Texas since the US Supreme Court overturned the decades-old federal ban on sports gambling known as PASPA.
We are going to lay out the bill’s most important points in a second but first let’s go over the key reasons this bill may have difficulty passing.
First of all, it was introduced by a Democrat and Texas is a staunchly Republican country. Second, for the bill to pass, a referendum to amend the state constitution to add sports betting must be held. The resolution will have to pass by a two-thirds majority in the House and Senate and be approved in a voter referendum. The oldest that can happen is November, 2019.
Here are the bill’s main attributes:
Online and mobile sports gambling in Texas is going to be legal.
A maximum of five licenses will be sold. Each license will permit two online gaming website skins.
Gamblers will cover a 6.25% tax, similar to a sales tax, on all money payable.
If the bill and resolution to amend the constitution pass, sports betting will be lawful in Texas on January 1, 2020.
The Recent Sports Betting Situation in Texas
Estimates indicate countless dollars of tax revenue could be generated from sports gambling legalization and that Texas would be the second-biggest sports gambling state in the country.
Even without online and mobile betting, it’s estimated that Texans will bet $9 billion on sports yearly. A 6.25% tax on these sales would equal over $500 million.
The desire to get that potential revenue is butting up against a largely conservative, anti-gambling establishment which will make for an interesting dynamic if this bill goes forward.
A prevailing anti-gambling attitude is not the only hurdle this bill will have to clear. Since you’ll read about below, even if the state wanted to legalize sports betting it would still need to amend its constitution to permit for gambling on sports.
All types of gambling, with the exclusion of this state lottery and dog and horse racing, is prohibited in Texas.
There’s only one tribal casino in the entire country and it isn’t permitted to provide casino table games, only slots.
The gaming laws are amazingly stiff from the Lone Star State and bookmaking is a Class A misdemeanor.
Despite sports gambling being prohibited in Texas, the state’s most significant sports team, the Dallas Cowboys, have agreed to a sponsorship arrangement with WinStar World Casino.
With the deal, the Cowboys became the first NFL team to partner with a casino.
This does not mean legalization is coming soon to Texas, no matter how the state’s flagship sports franchise inking a significant deal with a casino company is another portion of the puzzle that’s coming together.
Another big element is that Texas’s neighbors such as New Mexico, Louisiana, and Oklahoma either have fully fledged legalized sports betting or have invoices in motion to legalize it. That means Texans will have ample opportunity to take their billions of dollars and wager it out of state.
Texas Betting Laws Summary
Sports gambling is illegal in Texas.
A sports gambling bill was introduced in February of 2019 that may take effect on January 1, 2020.
While sports betting is illegal, horse and dog racing are legal. The state lottery has been around since 1991.
There is one tribal casino in Texas, the Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino in Eagle Pass on the Mexico border.
Daily fantasy sports betting is lawful and DraftKings, FanDuel, and Yahoo! all accept players from Texas.
The History of Online Sports Betting at Texas
There is no real sports gambling background in Texas. The state has enforced among the nation’s strictest group of anti-gambling laws and it goes way back. Dog and horse racing are legal in Texas, nevertheless gamblers can only place in-person wagers. OTB betting is not permitted.
To give the present scenario some context, let us look at the most pivotal moments in Texas’s gaming history:
1933 – Texas implements its first Pari-Mutuel horse race gambling.
1937 – Four years to the country’s foray into lawful horse racing that the tracks are shut down and gaming on the races is banned.
1971 – Charity gaming is exempted from anti-gambling legislation. Two years later this judgment is overturned once more making it illegal .
1982 – Licenses for charitable gambling are legally sanctioned. This took an amendment to the state constitution in 1980.
1987 – Pari-mutuel horse track betting return thanks to a favorable result in a state referendum. Simulcast betting from outside racetracks is introduced in 1991.
1988 – Casino Cruises are offered which sanction legal gaming as long as they’re in international waters. Vessels depart from the Texas shore. Operations lasted for 20 years before shutting down.
1992 – A referendum passes permitting for a state lottery which includes draws and scratch-off games.
1996 — 2002: Tribal/state compacts come to a mind as bingo halls and casinos on tribal lands are closed and reopened several times. Just one tribal casino remains to date that’s owned by the Kickapoo tribe just south of San Antonio near Mexico.
2013 – Lots of bills are introduced to expand gaming in the state but do not find the light of day. Plans included offering video lottery terminals at racetracks and eight state-licensed casinos.
Which Online Betting Sites Are Legal in Texas?
As of now, no internet sports betting websites are legal. Taking a look at the present sports betting bill, nevertheless, it’s clear that the future of authorized Texas sports betting will incorporate online and mobile betting options.
The Lone Star state is unique in that it only has a single tribal casino, and it is situated near the Texas/Mexico border. It is a good bet that this business will attempt to get involved using a land-based sportsbook and an online betting app.
Other physical infrastructure so far as casinos is infrequent so we anticipate nearly all the actions to occur online.
Like we mentioned before, the WinStar World Casino made an official deal with the Dallas Cowboys which may be an indicator that it is considering entering the market.
In addition, we expect based online sports betting sites which are already working in different states to apply for licenses. This includes brands such as BetStars, 888sport and a lot more.
If legalization will occur, check this page for expert reviews on all of the best online sportsbooks in Texas.
Which Sports Could You Bet on Online at Texas?
Texas is among the most sports mad states in the whole country, with just two NFL teams, three NBA teams, two MLB teams, two MLS teams, and also an NHL team.
And that doesn’t even tap into their huge collegiate sport footprint, with high rated teams coming from colleges such as Texas, Texas Tech, SMU, Vanderbilt, and Texas A&M.
When and if legal sports betting comes to Texas, gamblers will have the ability to bet on favorite North American sport and nearly anything else located anywhere in the world.
A Normal menu of sports Texans will be able to bet on includes:
Soccer (MLS, Premier League, Champions League, La Liga, International Competitions and much more )
The Way to Bet on Sports Legally in Texas
Betting is presently extremely restricted in Texas, with one property tribal casino in the entire country and no bodily sportsbooks.
The sports gambling legislation that is currently in the works gives us a sign of how things will probably work later on.
In other countries that currently allow online sports gambling, the practice of signing up for an account, depositing money and placing legal wagers is actually straightforward.
First read reviews of all the best online sports gambling sites in Texas, find one you like and then sign up for an account. You can usually create an account from everywhere but you have to be in Texas to actually make stakes.
You’re going to need to supply some personal info and once your account is set up, you can deposit money using lots of popular banking options. You can frequently get in on special welcome bonuses as well as other offers when you deposit.
Once the cash is on your accounts, just find the game you want to bet on and place your wager.
Are Daily Fantasy Sports Legal in Texas?
Players can place wagers at popular DFS betting sites including FanDuel and DraftKings, but there is a small legal grey area when it comes to if it is actually valid or not.
While the state doesn’t press charges against everyday dream sites, there have been unsuccessful invoices to fully legalize DFS previously.
The two FanDuel and DraftKings accept Texas players and the state seems content with allowing this play out at a country of legal flux until it fully believes their next steps online sports betting.
Concerning safety, the Fantasy Sports Trade Association and the US Gaming Commission are responsible for many DFS action so at the end of the day, funds on the sites are 100% secure.
What’s the Future of Online Sports Betting in Texas?
While historically a dark location for lawful gambling, Texas’s future so far as sports betting goes has gotten somewhat brighter.
There’s still a ways to go but with the debut of a new bill to legalize sports betting we are starting to see a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel.
Estimates range, but the American Sports Betting Coalition believes legalized sports betting could inject almost $2 billion dollars into the local market and create over 9,000 jobs. With Texans already betting on sports and in other states, new laws may actually have a chance of death.
On the other side of the debate are groups such as the General Baptist Convention of Texas that is made up of roughly three million Texans. Not only are they against legal sports gambling, they want to eliminate the whole state lottery.
Rob Kohler is a lobbyist for the Baptist Convention and states the proposed tax on sports gambling will hurt the weakest people in the country that the most, similar to the lottery.
“It’d create a revenue tax deduction using its regressivity. So, is it smart for us to fund our government with the folks that we’re giving money to assist? No,” said Kohler.
On the other hand, the State lottery failed to create $1.3 billion in 2017 for the state’s education system. The tax revenue from legal sports betting will be even bigger.
Questions Stay for Legal Texas Sports Betting
Whether sports gambling is eventually legalized in Texas depends on lots of different factors and no one can predict exactly how it’s likely to play out.
Our very best guess is that it will occur but it might not be the current sports gambling bill which gets the work done.
However, if everything goes perfectly and H 1275 passes with a change to the state constitution, Texans would be able to start betting on sports lawfully as early as January 1, 2020.
The sheer dimensions of the possible industry and profits, literally billions of dollars, is the largest reason we might see this laws fast-tracked.
In the meantime, sports bettors in Texas can bet on DFS, or even make the excursion to among a few nearby states which are already legalizing full-length sports gambling.
2019 will be a significant year for online sportsbooks in Texas and we’ll post big developments as they occur on this particular page.
Also, browse our state by state guides to legal sports betting in the united states for more info on other parts of the nation.