Gambling Law US
Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act
Internet Gambling Licensing Bill
Gambling Related Websites
Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection, and Enforcement Act
On May 6, 2009, Barney Frank introduced his bill (the "Bill") to legalize, license and regulate online casinos and pokerrooms. Sportsbetting is specifically prohibited. No new, specific taxation provisions are contained in the Bill.
Here is a first look at the Bill, with a few initial observations. This bill is monumentally better and more comprehensive than the bill that Rep. Frank introduced in the prior Congress.
The Bill provides:
"(1) LICENSING REQUIRED FOR CERTAIN INTERNET GAMBLING. - No person may operate an Internet gambling facility that knowingly accepts bets or wagers from persons located in the United States without a license issued by the Secretary..." The "Secretary" is the Secretary of the Treasury, or his designee. Licenses are issued for a five-year period.
An applicant is required to agree to submit to United States jurisdiction and abide by all applicable state and federal laws relating to taking bets over the Internet from persons located in the United States and all associated activities.
Applicants are deemed unsuitable for licensing, among other possible reasons:
Operational safeguards dealt with in the bill include:
Alternative Licensing Certification
The bill contains a provision allowing state and tribal licensing authorities to certify the suitability of applicants if the Secretary accepts the bona fides of such agency.
Payment Processors Exempted
Payment processors providing services to fund player accounts are exempted from liability for processing such transactions.
Opt Out Provisions
States are allowed to opt out. The bill provides: "No licensee may engage, under any license issued under this subchapter, in the operation of an Internet gambling facility that knowingly accepts bets or wagers initiated by persons who reside in any State which provides notice that it will limit such bets or wagers, if the Governor or other chief executive officer of such State informs the Director of such limitation, in a manner which clearly identifies the nature and extent of such limitation, before the end of the 90-day period beginning on the date of the enactment of [this Bill]"
Sports Betting Prohibited
Sports betting is prohibited under the Bill. The provisions of the Wire Wager Act (18 U.S.C 1084) are not applicable to bets made with a licensee.
Cheating devices are prohibited to the extent a licensee sets forth rules banning such devices. Using such devices is felony punishable by fine and up to five years in prison.
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