Minnesota was the first state to sign compacts with Native American tribes under the Indian Gambling Regulatory Act of 1988. Local lawmakers made a colossal blunder and failed to negotiate any provisions on tax contributions, essentially allowing Minnesota Indians to operate their businesses for free. Even worse, the state isn’t allowed to re-negotiate any of these compacts without the tribes’ approval. This oversight undoubtedly helped shape many local politicians’ attitude towards gambling, and its consequences are visible to this day.
The Land of 10,000 Lakes has a long history of failed attempts to introduce more gambling-friendly legislation. In 1993, there was a legislative effort to legalize video lottery terminals in bars and restaurants, but this proposal was rejected the following year. In 2013, local lawmakers allowed the Minnesota Lottery to sell tickets online, but the results were unsatisfactory, and the entire program was terminated in 2015. In 2017, there was a push to legalize DFS contests within state lines, but the House struck down the proposal in 2018. All things considered, we expect Minnesota politicians to be skeptical of any proposal to expand the local gambling market in the foreseeable future.
Minnesota regulations prohibit individuals from engaging in most forms of gambling outside tribal casinos and racetracks. This also applies to playing over the internet as gambling in this state is defined in very broad terms. The very act of placing a bet is considered a misdemeanor unless it is part of an exempt activity, such as lottery or social poker. Offshore gambling operators are not exempt, which makes the situation clear-cut. Note that Minnesota anti-gambling regulations include forfeiture provisions, and according to the local Attorney General, any computer used to place unlawful wagers is subject to those provisions.
Gambling in Minnesota is covered by Minnesota Statutes 349.11 et seq. and 609.75 et seq. The minimum gambling age is 18.
Minnesota Statutes 2002
The purpose of sections 349.11 to349.22 is to regulate lawful gambling to insure integrity of operations and to provide for the use of net profits only for lawful purposes.
Subdivision 1. Scope. — As used in sections 349.11 to 349.23 the terms in this section have the meanings given them.
Subd. 2. Active member. — “Active member” means a member who has paid all dues to the organization, who is 18 years of age or older, who has equal voting rights with all other members, who has equal opportunity to be an elected officer, who has equal right and responsibilities of attendance at the regularly scheduled meetings of the organization, whose name and membership origination date appear with the member’s knowledge and consent on a list of members of the organization, and who has been a member of the organization for at least six months.
Subd. 3. Affiliate. — “Affiliate” is any person or entity directly or indirectly controlling, controlled by, or under common control or ownership with a licensee of the board or any officer or director of a licensee of the board.
Subd. 3a. Allowable expense. — “Allowable expense” means the percentage of the total cost incurred by the organization in the purchase of any good, service, or other item which corresponds to the proportion of the total actual use of the good, service, or other item that is directly related to conduct of lawful gambling.
Subd. 3b. Bar operation. — “Bar operation” means a method of selling and redeeming disposable gambling equipment by an employee of the lessor within a leased premises which is licensed for the on-sale of alcoholic beverages.
Subd. 3c. Bar bingo. — “Bar bingo” is a bingo occasion conducted at a permitted premises in an area where intoxicating liquor or 3.2 percent malt beverages are sold and where the licensed organization conducts another form of lawful gambling. Bar bingo does not include bingo games linked to other permitted premises.
Subd. 4. Bingo. — “Bingo” means a game where each player has a bingo hard card, bingo paper sheet, or facsimile of a bingo paper sheet when used in conjunction with an electronic bingo device, for which a consideration has been paid, and played in accordance with this chapter and with rules of the board for the conduct of bingo. “Bingo” also includes a linked bingo game.
Subd. 5. “Bingo occasion” means a single gathering or session at which a series of one or more successive bingo games is played. There is no limit on the number of games conducted during a bingo occasion. A bingo occasion must not last longer than eight consecutive hours, except that linked bingo games played on electronic bingo devices may be played during regular business hours of the permitted premises, and all play during this period is considered a bingo occasion for reporting purposes. For permitted premises where the primary business is bingo, regular business hours shall be defined as the hours between 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 a.m.
Subd. 6. Board. — “Board” is the Gambling Control Board.
Subd. 6a. Booth operation. — “Booth operation” means a method of selling and redeeming disposable gambling equipment by an employee of a licensed organization in a premises the organization leases or owns.
Subd. 7. Capital assets. — “Capital assets” means property, real or personal, except gambling equipment, with an expected useful life of at least two years and a minimum value of $2,000.
Subd. 7a. Charitable contribution. — “Charitable contribution” means one or more of the lawful purposes expenditures under subdivision 25, paragraph (a), clauses (1) to (7), (10) to (15), and (19).
Subd. 8. Checker. — “Checker” means a person who records the number of bingo hard cards purchased and played during each game and records the prizes awarded to the recorded hard cards, but does not collect the payment for the hard cards.
Subd. 9. Deal. — “Deal” means each separate package, or series of packages, consisting of one game of pull-tabs or tipboards with the same serial number.
Subd. 10. Director. — “Director” is the director of the Gambling Control Board.
Subd. 11. Distributor. — “Distributor” is a person who sells gambling equipment for use within the state to licensed organizations, or to organizations conducting excluded or exempt activities under section 349.166.
Subd. 11a. Distributor salesperson. — “Distributor salesperson” means a person who in any manner receives orders for gambling equipment or who solicits a licensed, exempt, or excluded organization to purchase gambling equipment from a licensed distributor.
Subd. 12. [Repealed, 1991 c 233 s 110]
Subd. 12a. Electronic bingo device. — “Electronic bingo device” means a handheld and portable electronic device that:
(a) is used by a bingo player to:
(1) monitor bingo paper sheets or a facsimile of a bingo paper sheet purchased and played at the time and place of an organization’s bingo occasion, or to play an electronic bingo game that is linked with other permitted premises;
(2) activate numbers announced or displayed, and to compare the numbers to the bingo faces previously stored in the memory of the device;
(3) identify a winning bingo pattern or game requirement; and
(4) play against other bingo players;
(b) limits the play of bingo faces to 36 faces per game;
(c) requires coded entry to activate play but does not allow the use of a coin, currency, or tokens to be inserted to activate play;
(d) may only be used for play against other bingo players in a bingo game;
(e) has no additional function as an amusement or gambling device other than as an electronic pull-tab game defined under section 349.12, subdivision 12c;
(f) has the capability to ensure adequate levels of security internal controls;
(g) has the capability to permit the board to electronically monitor the operation of the device and the internal accounting systems; and
(h) has the capability to allow use by a player who is visually impaired.
Subd. 12b. Electronic pull-tab device. — “Electronic pull-tab device” means a handheld and portable electronic device that:
(1) is used to play one or more electronic pull-tab games;
(2) requires coded entry to activate play but does not allow the use of coin, currency, or tokens to be inserted to activate play;
(3) requires that a player must activate or open each electronic pull-tab ticket and each individual line, row, or column of each electronic pull-tab ticket;
(4) maintains information pertaining to accumulated win credits that may be applied to games in play or redeemed upon termination of play;
(5) has no spinning reels or other representations that mimic a video slot machine;
(6) has no additional function as a gambling device other than as an electronic-linked bingo game played on a device defined under section 349.12, subdivision 12a;
(7) may incorporate an amusement game feature as part of the pull-tab game but may not require additional consideration for that feature or award any prize, or other benefit for that feature;
(8) may have auditory or visual enhancements to promote or provide information about the game being played, provided the component does not affect the outcome of a game or display the results of a game;
(9) maintains, on nonresettable meters, a printable, permanent record of all transactions involving each device and electronic pull-tab games played on the device;
(10) is not a pull-tab dispensing device as defined under subdivision 32a; and
(11) has the capability to allow use by a player who is visually impaired.
Subd. 12c. Electronic pull-tab game. — “Electronic pull-tab game” means a pull-tab game containing:
(a) facsimiles of pull-tab tickets that are played on an electronic pull-tab device;
(b) a predetermined, finite number of winning and losing tickets, not to exceed 7,500 tickets;
(c) the same price for each ticket in the game;
(d) a price paid by the player of not less than 25 cents per ticket;
(e) tickets that are in conformance with applicable board rules for pull-tabs;
(f) winning tickets that comply with prize limits under section 349.211;
(g) a unique serial number that may not be regenerated;
(h) an electronic flare that displays the game name, form number, predetermined, finite number of tickets in the game, and prize tier; and
(i) no spinning reels or other representations that mimic a video slot machine.
Subd. 12d. Electronic pull-tab game system. — “Electronic pull-tab game system” means the equipment leased from a licensed distributor and used by a licensed organization to conduct, manage, and record electronic pull-tab games, and to report and transmit the game results as prescribed by the board and the Department of Revenue. The system must provide security and access levels sufficient so that internal control objectives are met as prescribed by the board. The system must contain a point of sale station.
Subd. 12e. Electronic raffle selection system.— “Electronic raffle selection system” means a system which uses a random number generator to select winning raffle numbers and includes raffle sales devices.
Subd. 13. Face value. — “Face value” means the price per ticket printed on the ticket or the flare.
Subd. 14. [Repealed, 2002 c 386 art 1 s 12]
Subd. 15. 501(c)(3) organization. — “501(c)(3) organization” is an organization exempt from the payment of federal income taxes under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Subd. 15a. Festival organization. — “Festival organization” is an organization conducting a community festival that is exempt from the payment of federal income taxes under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Subd. 15b. 501(c)(19) organization. — “501(c)(19) organization” is an organization exempt from the payment of federal income taxes under section 501(c)(19) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Subd. 16. Flare. — “Flare” is the posted display, with registration stamp affixed or bar code imprinted or affixed, that sets forth the rules of a particular game of pull-tabs or tipboards and that is associated with a specific deal of pull-tabs or grouping of tipboards.
Subd. 16a. Fraternal organization. — “Fraternal organization” means a nonprofit organization which is a branch, lodge, or chapter of a national or state organization registered by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)8 or a 501(c)10 nonprofit organization and exists for the common business, fraternal, or other interests of its members. The term does not include college and high school fraternities and sororities.
Subd. 17. Free play. — “Free play” means a winning ticket that is labeled as a free play or its equivalent.
Subd. 18. Gambling equipment.— “Gambling equipment” means gambling equipment that is either disposable or permanent gambling equipment.
(a) Disposable gambling equipment includes the following:
(1) bingo hard cards or paper sheets, including linked bingo paper sheets;
(2) paper and electronic pull-tabs;
(3) jar tickets;
(4) paddle tickets and paddle ticket cards;
(5) tipboards and tipboard tickets;
(6) promotional tickets that mimic a pull-tab or tipboard;
(7) application software and those computer programs provided by a licensed manufacturer in the production, play, and reporting of board-approved electronic pull-tab games or electronic bingo games;
(8) raffle boards; and
(9) a disposable sealed placard, containing all 75 randomly placed bingo letter and number combinations, that, when opened, is used to select the bingo numbers in a single game of bingo.
(b) Permanent gambling equipment includes the following:
(1) devices for selecting bingo numbers;
(2) electronic bingo devices;
(3) electronic pull-tab devices;
(4) pull-tab dispensing devices;
(5) programmable electronic devices that have no effect on the outcome of a game and are used to provide a visual or auditory enhancement of a game;
(7) paddlewheel tables; and
(8) electronic raffle selection systems.
Subd. 19. Gambling manager.— “Gambling manager” means a person who has been designated by the organization to supervise the lawful gambling conducted by it, has been an active member of the organization for at least the most recent 90 days at the time of the application for a gambling manager license, and meets other qualifications as prescribed by the board by rule.
Subd. 20. Gross profit. — “Gross profit” means the gross receipts collected from lawful gambling, less reasonable sums necessarily and actually expended for prizes.
Subd. 21. Gross receipts. — “Gross receipts” means all receipts derived from lawful gambling activity including, but not limited to, the following items:
(1) gross sales of bingo hard cards, paper sheets, facsimiles of bingo paper sheets when used in conjunction with an electronic bingo device, and rental of electronic bingo devices before reduction for prizes, expenses, shortages, free plays, or any other charges or offsets;
(2) the ideal gross of pull-tab and tipboard deals or games less the value of unsold and defective tickets and before reduction for prizes, expenses, shortages, free plays, or any other charges or offsets;
(3) gross sales of raffle tickets and paddle tickets before reduction for prizes, expenses, shortages, free plays, or any other charges or offsets;
(4) admission, commission, cover, or other charges imposed on participants in lawful gambling activity as a condition for or cost of participation; and
(5) interest, dividends, annuities, profit from transactions, or other income derived from the accumulation or use of gambling proceeds.
Gross receipts does not include rental proceeds from premises owned by an organization and leased to one or more other organizations for the purposes of conducting lawful gambling.
Subd. 21a. Hot-ball bingo prize.— “Hot-ball bingo prize” is an additional prize awarded for a winning bingo face for which the last bingo number called in the bingo game matches a previously designated bingo number announced to all players immediately prior to the beginning of the bingo game or the bingo occasion.
Subd. 22. Ideal gross. — “Ideal gross” means the total amount of receipts that would be received if every individual ticket in the pull-tab or tipboard deal was sold at its face value. In the calculation of ideal gross and prizes, a free play ticket shall be valued at face value.
Subd. 23. Ideal net. — “Ideal net” means the pull-tab or tipboard deal’s ideal gross, as defined under subdivision 22, less the total predetermined prize amounts available to be paid out. When the prize is not entirely a monetary one, the ideal net is 50 percent of the ideal gross.
Subd. 24. Lawful gambling. — “Lawful gambling” is the operation, conduct or sale of bingo, raffles, paddle wheels, tipboards, and pull-tabs.
Subd. 25. Lawful purpose.
(a) “Lawful purpose” means one or more of the following:
(1) any expenditure by or contribution to a 501(c)(3) or festival organization, as defined in subdivision 15c, provided that the organization and expenditure or contribution are in conformity with standards prescribed by the board under section 349.154, which standards must apply to both types of organizations in the same manner and to the same extent;
(2) a contribution to or expenditure for goods and services for an individual or family suffering from poverty, homelessness, or disability, which is used to relieve the effects of that suffering;
(3) a contribution to a program recognized by the Minnesota Department of Human Services for the education, prevention, or treatment of problem gambling;
(4) a contribution to or expenditure on a public or private nonprofit educational institution registered with or accredited by this state or any other state;
(5) a contribution to an individual, public or private nonprofit educational institution registered with or accredited by this state or any other state, or to a scholarship fund of a nonprofit organization whose primary mission is to award scholarships, for defraying the cost of education to individuals where the funds are awarded through an open and fair selection process;
(6) activities by an organization or a government entity which recognize military service to the United States, the state of Minnesota, or a community, subject to rules of the board, provided that the rules must not include mileage reimbursements in the computation of the per diem reimbursement limit and must impose no aggregate annual limit on the amount of reasonable and necessary expenditures made to support:
(i) members of a military marching or color guard unit for activities conducted within the state;
(ii) members of an organization solely for services performed by the members at funeral services;
(iii) members of military marching, color guard, or honor guard units may be reimbursed for participating in color guard, honor guard, or marching unit events within the state or states contiguous to Minnesota at a per participant rate of up to $50 per diem; or
(iv) active military personnel and their immediate family members in need of support services;
(7) recreational, community, and athletic facilities and activities intended primarily for persons under age 21, provided that such facilities and activities do not discriminate on the basis of gender and the organization complies with section 349.154, subdivision 3a;
(8) payment of local taxes authorized under this chapter, taxes imposed by the United States on receipts from lawful gambling, the taxes imposed by section 297E.02, subdivisions 1, 5, and 6, and the tax imposed on unrelated business income by section 290.05, subdivision 3;
(9) payment of real estate taxes and assessments on permitted gambling premises owned by the licensed organization paying the taxes, or wholly leased by a licensed veterans organization under a national charter recognized under section 501(c)(19) of the Internal Revenue Code;
(10) a contribution to the United States, this state or any of its political subdivisions, or any agency or instrumentality thereof other than a direct contribution to a law enforcement or prosecutorial agency;
(11) a contribution to or expenditure by a nonprofit organization which is a church or body of communicants gathered in common membership for mutual support and edification in piety, worship, or religious observances;
(12) an expenditure for citizen monitoring of surface water quality by individuals or nongovernmental organizations that is consistent with section 115.06, subdivision 4, and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency guidance on monitoring procedures, quality assurance protocols, and data management, provided that the resulting data is submitted to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency for review and inclusion in the state water quality database;
(13) a contribution to or expenditure on projects or activities approved by the commissioner of natural resources for:
(i) wildlife management projects that benefit the public at large;
(ii) grant-in-aid trail maintenance and grooming established under sections 84.83 and 84.927, and other trails open to public use, including purchase or lease of equipment for this purpose; and
(iii) supplies and materials for safety training and educational programs coordinated by the Department of Natural Resources, including the Enforcement Division;
(14) conducting nutritional programs, food shelves, and congregate dining programs primarily for persons who are age 62 or older or disabled;
(15) a contribution to a community arts organization, or an expenditure to sponsor arts programs in the community, including but not limited to visual, literary, performing, or musical arts;
(16) an expenditure by a licensed fraternal organization or a licensed veterans organization for payment of water, fuel for heating, electricity, and sewer costs for:
(i) up to 100 percent for a building wholly owned or wholly leased by and used as the primary headquarters of the licensed veteran or fraternal organization; or
(ii) a proportional amount subject to approval by the director and based on the portion of a building used as the primary headquarters of the licensed veteran or fraternal organization;
(17) expenditure by a licensed veterans organization of up to $5,000 in a calendar year in net costs to the organization for meals and other membership events, limited to members and spouses, held in recognition of military service. No more than $5,000 can be expended in total per calendar year under this clause by all licensed veterans organizations sharing the same veterans post home;
(18) payment of fees authorized under this chapter imposed by the state of Minnesota to conduct lawful gambling in Minnesota;
(19) a contribution or expenditure to honor an individual’s humanitarian service as demonstrated through philanthropy or volunteerism to the United States, this state, or local community;
(20) a contribution by a licensed organization to another licensed organization with prior board approval, with the contribution designated to be used for one or more of the following lawful purposes under this section: clauses (1) to (7), (11) to (15), (19), and (25);
(21) an expenditure that is a contribution to a parent organization, if the parent organization: (i) has not provided to the contributing organization within one year of the contribution any money, grants, property, or other thing of value, and (ii) has received prior board approval for the contribution that will be used for a program that meets one or more of the lawful purposes under subdivision 7a;
(22) an expenditure for the repair, maintenance, or improvement of real property and capital assets owned by an organization, or for the replacement of a capital asset that can no longer be repaired, with a fiscal year limit of five percent of gross profits from the previous fiscal year, with no carryforward of unused allowances. The fiscal year is July 1 through June 30. Total expenditures for the fiscal year may not exceed the limit unless the board has specifically approved the expenditures that exceed the limit due to extenuating circumstances beyond the organization’s control. An expansion of a building or bar-related expenditures are not allowed under this provision.
(i) The expenditure must be related to the portion of the real property or capital asset that must be made available for use free of any charge to other nonprofit organizations, community groups, or service groups, and is used for the organization’s primary mission or headquarters.
(ii) An expenditure may be made to bring an existing building that the organization owns into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
(iii) An organization may apply the amount that is allowed under item (ii) to the erection or acquisition of a replacement building that is in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act if the board has specifically approved the amount. The cost of the erection or acquisition of a replacement building may not be made from gambling proceeds, except for the portion allowed under this item;
(23) an expenditure for the acquisition or improvement of a capital asset with a cost greater than $2,000, excluding real property, that will be used exclusively for lawful purposes under this section if the board has specifically approved the amount;
(24) an expenditure for the acquisition, erection, improvement, or expansion of real property, if the board has first specifically authorized the expenditure after finding that the real property will be used exclusively for lawful purpose under this section;
(25) an expenditure, including a mortgage payment or other debt service payment, for the erection or acquisition of a comparable building to replace an organization-owned building that was destroyed or made uninhabitable by fire or catastrophe or to replace an organization-owned building that was taken or sold under an eminent domain proceeding. The expenditure may be only for that part of the replacement cost not reimbursed by insurance for the fire or catastrophe or compensation not received from a governmental unit under the eminent domain proceeding, if the board has first specifically authorized the expenditure; or
(26) a contribution to a 501(c)(19) organization that does not have an organization license under section 349.16 and is not affiliated with the contributing organization, and whose owned or leased property is not a permitted premises under section 349.165. The 501(c)(19) organization may only use the contribution for lawful purposes under this subdivision or for the organization’s primary mission. The 501(c)(19) organization may not use the contribution for expansion of a building or for bar-related expenditures. A contribution may not be made to a statewide organization representing a consortia of 501(c)(19) organizations.
(b) Expenditures authorized by the board under clauses (24) and (25) must be 51 percent completed within two years of the date of board approval; otherwise the organization must reapply to the board for approval of the project. “Fifty-one percent completed” means that the work completed must represent at least 51 percent of the value of the project as documented by the contractor or vendor.
(c) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), “lawful purpose” does not include:
(1) any expenditure made or incurred for the purpose of influencing the nomination or election of a candidate for public office or for the purpose of promoting or defeating a ballot question;
(2) any activity intended to influence an election or a governmental decision-making process;
(3) a contribution to a statutory or home rule charter city, county, or town by a licensed organization with the knowledge that the governmental unit intends to use the contribution for a pension or retirement fund; or
(4) a contribution to a 501(c)(3) organization or other entity with the intent or effect of not complying with lawful purpose restrictions or requirements.
Subd. 25a. Linked bingo game. — “Linked bingo game” means a bingo game played at two or more locations where licensed organizations are authorized to conduct bingo, where there is a common prize pool and a common selection of numbers or symbols conducted at one location, and where the results of the selection are transmitted to all participating locations by satellite, telephone, or other means by a linked bingo game provider.
Subd. 25b. Linked bingo game provider. — “Linked bingo game provider” means any person who provides the means to link bingo games, who provides linked bingo prize management, and who provides the linked bingo game system.
Subd. 25c. Linked bingo game system. — “Linked bingo game system” means the equipment used by the linked bingo provider to conduct, transmit, and track a linked bingo game. The system must be approved by the board before its use in this state and it must have the capability to permit the board to electronically monitor its operation remotely. For linked electronic bingo games, the system includes electronic bingo devices.
Subd. 25d. Linked bingo prize pool. — “Linked bingo prize pool” means the total of all prize money that each participating organization has contributed to a linked bingo game prize and includes any portion of the prize pool that is carried over from one game to another in a progressive linked bingo game.
Subd. 26. Manufacturer. — “Manufacturer” means a person or entity who assembles from raw materials or subparts a completed piece of gambling equipment, and who sells or furnishes the equipment for resale or for use in the state. The term includes a person who converts, modifies, adds to, or removes parts or a portion from an item, device, or assembly to further its promotion, sale, or use as gambling equipment in this state. A person only adding or modifying promotional flares to advise the public of the prizes available, the rules of play, and the consideration required is not a manufacturer.
Subd. 26a. Master flare. — “Master flare” is the posted display, with registration stamp affixed or bar code imprinted or affixed, that is used in conjunction with sealed groupings of 100 or fewer sequentially numbered paddle ticket cards.
Subd. 27. Net profit. — “Net profit” means gross profit less reasonable sums actually expended for allowable expenses.
Subd. 28. Organization. — “Organization” means any fraternal, religious, veterans, or other nonprofit organization.
Subd. 28a. Paddle ticket. — “Paddle ticket” means a preprinted ticket that can be used to place wagers on the spin of a paddle wheel.
Subd. 28b. Paddle ticket card. — “Paddle ticket card” means a card to which detachable paddle tickets are attached.
Subd. 28c. Paddle ticket card number. — “Paddle ticket card number” means the unique serial number preprinted by the manufacturer on the stub of a paddle ticket card and the paddle tickets attached to the card.
Subd. 29. Paddle wheel. — “Paddle wheel” means a vertical wheel marked off into sections containing one or more numbers, and which, after being turned or spun, uses a pointer or marker to indicate winning chances, and may only be used to determine a winning number or numbers matching a winning paddle ticket purchased by a player. A paddle wheel may be an electronic device that simulates a paddle wheel.
Subd. 30. Person. — “Person” is an individual, organization, firm, association, partnership, limited liability company, corporation, trustee, or legal representative.
Subd. 30a. Profit carryover. — “Profit carryover” means cumulative net profit less cumulative lawful purpose expenditures.
Subd. 31. Promotional ticket. — A paper pull-tab ticket or paper tipboard ticket created and printed by a licensed manufacturer with the words “no purchase necessary” and “for promotional use only” and for which no consideration is given is a promotional ticket.
Subd. 32. Pull-tab. — “Pull-tab” means a single folded or banded paper ticket, multi-ply card with perforated break-open tabs, or a facsimile of a paper pull-tab ticket used in conjunction with an electronic pull-tab device, the face of which is initially covered to conceal one or more numbers or symbols, and where one or more of each set of tickets, cards, or facsimiles has been designated in advance as a winner.
Subd. 32a. Pull-tab dispensing device. — “Pull-tab dispensing device” means a mechanical device that dispenses paper pull-tabs and has no additional function as an amusement or gambling device. A pull-tab dispensing device may have as a component an auditory or visual enhancement to promote or provide information about a game being dispensed, provided the component does not affect the outcome of a game or display the results of a game or an individual ticket.
Subd. 33. Raffle. — “Raffle” means a game in which a participant buys a ticket or other certificate of participation in an event where the prize determination is based on a method of random selection and all entries have an equal chance of selection.
Subd. 33a. Raffle board. — “Raffle board” means a placard with up to 200 squares whereby participants in the raffle write their names to indicate entry.
Subd. 33b. Raffle sales device.— “Raffle sales device” is an attendant-operated cashier station used as a point of sale for raffle tickets from which a raffle participant may purchase a raffle ticket to participate in an electronic raffle selection system.
Subd. 33c. Share the pot raffle.— “Share the pot raffle” means a raffle in which the prize amount is a percentage of the raffle’s gross receipts.
Subd. 34. Tipboard. — “Tipboard” means a board, placard or other device containing a seal that conceals the winning number or symbol, and that serves as the game flare for a tipboard game. A sports-themed tipboard is a board, placard, or other device that contains a grid of predesignated numbers for which the winning numbers are determined in whole or in part by the numerical outcome of one or more professional sporting events, serves as the game flare for player registration, but is not required to contain a seal. For a sports-themed tipboard, the winning numbers must be determined solely by the numerical outcome.
Subd. 35. Tipboard ticket. — “Tipboard ticket” is a single folded or banded ticket, or multi-ply card, the face of which is initially covered or otherwise hidden from view to conceal a number, symbol, or set of symbols, some of which have been designated in advance and at random as prize winners. For a sports-themed tipboard, the tipboard ticket contains a set of numbers used to determine the winner based on the numerical outcome of a professional sporting event.
Subd. 36. Veterans post home. — “Veterans post home” means a building, or portion of a building, that is leased or owned by one or more licensed veterans organizations, and that is considered the post home for all licensed veterans organizations at that site.
Subd. 37. Wholly leased building. — “Wholly leased building” means a building that is leased in its entirety by a licensed organization, and no part or portion of the building is subleased to any other entity or licensed organization.
Subd. 38. Wholly owned building. — “Wholly owned building” means a building that is owned in its entirety by a licensed organization, and no part or portion of the building is subleased to any other entity or licensed organization.
349A.02 State lottery.
Subdivision 1. Director. A state lottery is established under the supervision and control of the director of the state lottery appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. The director must be qualified by experience and training in the operation of a lottery to supervise the lottery. The director serves in the unclassified service. The annual salary rate authorized for the director is equal to 95 percent of the salary rate prescribed for the governor.
541.20 Recovery of money lost.
Every person who, by playing at cards, dice, or other game, or by betting on the hands or sides of such as are gambling, shall lose to any person so playing or betting any sum of money or any goods, and pays or delivers the same, or any part thereof, to the winner, may sue for and recover such money by a civil action, before any court of competent jurisdiction. For purposes of this section, gambling shall not include pari-mutuel wagering conducted under a license issued pursuant to chapter 240, purchase or sale of tickets in the state lottery, or gambling authorized under chapters 349 and 349A.
Last Updated Mar. 20, 2007
609.75 Gambling; definitions.
Subdivision 1. Lottery. (a) A lottery is a plan which provides for the distribution of money, property or other reward or benefit to persons selected by chance from among participants some or all of whom have given a consideration for the chance of being selected. A participant’s payment for use of a 900 telephone number or another means of communication that results in payment to the sponsor of the plan constitutes consideration under this paragraph.
(b) An in-package chance promotion is not a lottery if all of the following are met:
(1) participation is available, free and without purchase of the package, from the retailer or by mail or toll-free telephone request to the sponsor for entry or for a game piece;
(2) the label of the promotional package and any related advertising clearly states any method of participation and the scheduled termination date of the promotion;
(3) the sponsor on request provides a retailer with a supply of entry forms or game pieces adequate to permit free participation in the promotion by the retailer’s customers;
(4) the sponsor does not misrepresent a participant’s chances of winning any prize;
(5) the sponsor randomly distributes all game pieces and maintains records of random distribution for at least one year after the termination date of the promotion;
(6) all prizes are randomly awarded if game pieces are not used in the promotion; and
(7) the sponsor provides on request of a state agency a record of the names and addresses of all winners of prizes valued at $100 or more, if the request is made within one year after the termination date of the promotion.
(c) Except as provided by section 299L.07, acts in this state in furtherance of a lottery conducted outside of this state are included notwithstanding its validity where conducted.
(d) The distribution of property, or other reward or benefit by an employer to persons selected by chance from among participants, all of whom:
(1) have made a contribution through a payroll or pension deduction campaign to a registered combined charitable organization, within the meaning of section 43A.50; or
(2) have paid other consideration to the employer entirely for the benefit of such a registered combined charitable organization, as a precondition to the chance of being selected, is not a lottery if: (i) all of the persons eligible to be selected are employed by or retirees of the employer; and (ii) the cost of the property or other reward or benefit distributed and all costs associated with the distribution are borne by the employer.
Subd. 2. Bet. A bet is a bargain whereby the parties mutually agree to a gain or loss by one to the other of specified money, property or benefit dependent upon chance although the chance is accompanied by some element of skill.
Subd. 3. What are not bets. The following are not bets:
(1) A contract to insure, indemnify, guarantee or otherwise compensate another for a harm or loss sustained, even though the loss depends upon chance.
(2) A contract for the purchase or sale at a future date of securities or other commodities.
(3) Offers of purses, prizes or premiums to the actual contestants in any bona fide contest for the determination of skill, speed, strength, endurance, or quality or to the bona fide owners of animals or other property entered in such a contest.
(4) The game of bingo when conducted in compliance with sections 349.11 to 349.23.
(5) A private social bet not part of or incidental to organized, commercialized, or systematic gambling.
(6) The operation of equipment or the conduct of a raffle under sections 349.11 to 349.22, by an organization licensed by the gambling control board or an organization exempt from licensing under section 349.166.
(7) Pari-mutuel betting on horse racing when the betting is conducted under chapter 240.
(8) The purchase and sale of state lottery tickets under chapter 349A.
Subd. 4. Gambling device. A gambling device is a contrivance which for a consideration affords the player an opportunity to obtain something of value, other than free plays, automatically from the machine or otherwise, the award of which is determined principally by chance. “Gambling device” also includes a video game of chance, as defined in subdivision 8.
Subd. 4a. Associated equipment. Associated equipment means any equipment used in connection with gambling that would not be classified as a gambling device, including but not limited to: cards, dice, computerized systems of betting at a race book or sports pool, computerized systems for monitoring slot machines or games of chance, devices for weighing or counting money, and links which connect progressive slot machines.
Subd. 5. Gambling place. A gambling place is a location or structure, stationary or movable, or any part thereof, wherein, as one of its uses, betting is permitted or promoted, a lottery is conducted or assisted or a gambling device is operated.
Subd. 6. Bucket shop. A bucket shop is a place wherein the operator is engaged in making bets in the form of purchases or sales on public exchanges of securities, commodities or other personal property for future delivery to be settled at prices dependent on the chance of those prevailing at the public exchanges without a bona fide purchase or sale being in fact made on a board of trade or exchange.
Subd. 7. Sports bookmaking. Sports bookmaking is the activity of intentionally receiving, recording or forwarding within any 30-day period more than five bets, or offers to bet, that total more than $2,500 on any one or more sporting events.
Subd. 8. Video game of chance. A video game of chance is a game or device that simulates one or more games commonly referred to as poker, blackjack, craps, hi-lo, roulette, or other common gambling forms, though not offering any type of pecuniary award or gain to players. The term also includes any video game having one or more of the following characteristics:
(1) it is primarily a game of chance, and has no substantial elements of skill involved;
(2) it awards game credits or replays and contains a meter or device that records unplayed credits or replays. A video game that simulates horse racing that does not involve a prize payout is not a video game of chance.
Subd. 9. 900 telephone number. A 900 telephone number is a ten-digit number, the first three numbers of which are from 900 to 999.
Subd. 10. Game. A game means any game played with cards, dice, equipment, or any mechanical or electronic device or machine for money or other value, whether or not approved by law, and includes, but is not limited to: card and dice games of chance, slot machines, banking or percentage games, video games of chance, sports pools, pari-mutuel betting, and race book. “Game” does not include any private social bet.
Subd. 11. Authorized gambling activity. An authorized gambling activity means any form of gambling authorized by and operated in conformance with law.
Subd. 12. Authorized gambling establishment. An authorized gambling establishment means any premises where gambling authorized by law is occurring.
Subd. 13. Applicability of definitions. For the purposes of sections 609.75 to 609.762, the terms defined in this section have the meanings given, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.
609.755 Acts of or relating to gambling.
Whoever does any of the following is guilty of a misdemeanor:
(1) makes a bet;
(2) sells or transfers a chance to participate in a lottery;
(3) disseminates information about a lottery, except a lottery conducted by an adjoining state, with intent to encourage participation therein;
(4) permits a structure or location owned or occupied by the actor or under the actor’s control to be used as a gambling place; or
(5) except where authorized by statute, possesses a gambling device.
Clause (5) does not prohibit possession of a gambling device in a person’s dwelling for amusement purposes in a manner that does not afford players an opportunity to obtain anything of value.
609.76 Other acts relating to gambling.
Subdivision 1. Gross misdemeanors. Whoever does any of the following may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than one year or to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000, or both:
(1) maintains or operates a gambling place or operates a bucket shop;
(2) intentionally participates in the income of a gambling place or bucket shop;
(3) conducts a lottery, or, with intent to conduct a lottery, possesses facilities for doing so;
(4) sets up for use for the purpose of gambling, or collects the proceeds of, any gambling device or bucket shop;
(5) except as provided in section 299L.07, manufactures, sells, offers for sale, or otherwise provides, in whole or any part thereof, any gambling device including those defined in section 349.30, subdivision 2;
(6) with intent that it be so used, manufactures, sells, or offers for sale any facility for conducting a lottery, except as provided by section 349.40; or
(7) receives, records, or forwards bets or offers to bet or, with intent to receive, record, or forward bets or offers to bet, possesses facilities to do so.
Subd. 2. Sports bookmaking. Whoever engages in sports bookmaking is guilty of a felony.
Subd. 3. Cheating. Whoever cheats in a game, as described in this subdivision, is subject to the following penalties:
(i) if the person holds a license related to gambling or is an employee of the licensee, the person is guilty of a felony; and
(ii) any other person is guilty of a gross misdemeanor. Any person who is a repeat offender is guilty of a felony.
A person cheats in a game by intentionally:
(1) altering or misrepresenting the outcome of a game or event on which wagers have been made, after the outcome is determined, but before the outcome is revealed to the players;
(2) placing, canceling, increasing, or decreasing a bet after acquiring knowledge, not available to other players, of the outcome of the game or subject of the bet, or of events affecting the outcome of the game or subject of the bet;
(3) claiming or collecting money or anything of value from a game or authorized gambling establishment not won or earned from the game or authorized gambling establishment;
(4) manipulating a gambling device or associated equipment to affect the outcome of the game or the number of plays or credits available on the game; or
(5) otherwise altering the elements of chance or methods of selection or criteria which determine the result of the game or amount or frequency of payment of the game.
Subd. 4. Certain devices prohibited. (a) Whoever uses or possesses a probability-calculating or outcome-affecting device at an authorized gambling establishment is guilty of a felony. For purposes of this subdivision, a “probability-calculating” or “outcome-affecting” device is any device to assist in:
(1) projecting the outcome of a game other than pari-mutuel betting authorized by chapter 240;
(2) keeping track of or counting cards used in a game;
(3) analyzing the probability of the occurrence of an event relating to a game other than pari-mutuel betting authorized by chapter 240; or
(4) analyzing the strategy for playing or betting in a game other than pari-mutuel betting authorized by chapter 240.
For purposes of this section, a book, graph, periodical, chart, or pamphlet is not a “probability-calculating” or “outcome-affecting” device.
(b) Whoever uses, or possesses with intent to use, a key or other instrument for the purpose of opening, entering, and affecting the operation of any game or gambling device or for removing money, chips, tokens, or other contents from therein, is guilty of a felony. This paragraph does not apply to an agent or employee of an authorized gambling establishment acting within the scope of employment.
Subd. 5. Counterfeit chips prohibited. Whoever intentionally uses counterfeit chips or tokens to play a game at an authorized gambling establishment as defined in section 609.75, subdivision 5, designed to be played with or operated by chips or tokens is guilty of a felony. For purposes of this subdivision, counterfeit chips or tokens are chips or tokens not approved by the government regulatory agency for use in an authorized gambling activity.
Subd. 6. Manufacture, sale, and modification prohibited. (a) Whoever manufactures, sells, distributes, or otherwise provides cards, chips, tokens, dice, or other equipment or devices intended to be used to violate this section, is guilty of a felony.
(b) Whoever intentionally marks, alters, or otherwise modifies lawful associated equipment or gambling devices for the purpose of violating this section is guilty of a felony.
Subd. 7. Instruction. Whoever instructs another person to violate the provisions of this section, with the intent that the information or knowledge conveyed be used to violate this section, is guilty of a felony.
Subd. 8. Value of chips or tokens. The value of chips or tokens approved for use in a game designed to be played with or operated by chips or tokens, as the term “value” is used in section 609.52, is the amount or denomination shown on the face of the chip or token representing United States currency. Chips used in tournament play at a card club at a class A facility have no United States currency value.
609.761 Operations permitted.
Subdivision 1. Lawful gambling . Notwithstanding sections 609.755 and 609.76, an organization may conduct lawful gambling as defined in section 349.12, if authorized under chapter 349, and a person may manufacture, sell, or offer for sale a gambling device to an organization authorized under chapter 349 to conduct lawful gambling, and pari-mutuel betting on horse racing may be conducted under chapter 240.
Subd. 2. State lottery . Sections 609.755 and 609.76 do not prohibit the operation of the state lottery or the sale, possession, or purchase of tickets for the state lottery under chapter 349A.
Subd. 3. Social skill game. Sections 609.755 and
609.76 do not prohibit tournaments or contests that satisfy all of the following requirements:
(1) the tournament or contest consists of the card games of chance commonly known as cribbage, skat, sheephead, bridge, euchre, pinochle, gin, 500, smear, Texas hold’em, or whist;
(2) the tournament or contest does not provide any direct financial benefit to the promoter or organizer;
(3) the value of all prizes awarded for each tournament or contest does not exceed $200; and
(4) for a tournament or contest involving Texas hold’em:
(i) no person under 18 years of age may participate;
(ii) the payment of an entry fee or other consideration for participating is prohibited;
(iii) the value of all prizes awarded to an individual winner of a tournament or contest at a single location may not exceed $200 each day; and
(iv) the organizer or promoter must ensure that reasonable accommodations are made for players with disabilities. Accommodations to the table and the cards shall include the announcement of the cards visible to the entire table and the use of Braille cards for players who are blind.
Subd. 4 . Social dice games. Sections 609.755 and 609.76 do not prohibit dice games conducted on the premises and adjoining rooms of a retail establishment licensed to sell alcoholic beverages if the following requirements are satisfied:
(1) the games consist of board games played with dice or commonly known dice games such as “shake-a-day,” “3-2-1,” “who buys,” “last chance,” “liar’s poker,” “6-5-4,” “horse,” and “aces“;
(2) wagers or prizes for the games are limited to food or beverages; and
(3) the retail establishment does not organize or participate financially in the games.
Subd. 5. High school raffles. Sections 609.755 and 609.76 do not prohibit a raffle, as defined in section 349.12, subdivision 33, conducted by a school district or a nonprofit organization organized primarily to support programs of a school district, if the following conditions are complied with:
(1) tickets for the raffle may only be sold and the drawing conducted at a high school event sponsored by a school district All tickets must be sold for the same price;
(2) tickets may only be sold to persons 18 years of age or older attending the event;
(3) the drawing must be held during or immediately after the conclusion of the event;
(4) one-half of the gross receipts from the sale of tickets must be awarded as prizes for the raffle, and the remaining one-half may only be expended to defray the school district’s costs of sending event participants to high school activities held at other locations; and
(5) if a school district’s or nonprofit organization’s gross receipts from the conduct of raffles exceeds $12,000 in a calendar year or $5,000 in a single raffle, the school district or organization must report the following information to the Gambling Control Board annually: the total amount of gross receipts received, the total expenses for the raffles, the total prizes awarded, and an accounting of the expenditures from the gross receipts of the raffles.
609.762 Forfeiture of gambling devices, prizes and proceeds.
Subdivision 1. Forfeiture. The following are subject to forfeiture:
(1) devices used or intended for use, including those defined in section 349.30, subdivision 2, as a gambling device, except as authorized in sections 299L.07 and 349.11 to 349.23;
(2) all moneys, materials, and other property used or intended for use as payment to participate in gambling or a prize or receipt for gambling;
(3) books, records, and research products and materials, including formulas, microfilm, tapes, and data used or intended for use in gambling; and
(4) property used or intended to be used to illegally influence the outcome of a horse race.
Property subject to forfeiture under subdivision 1 may be seized by any law enforcement agency upon process issued by any court having jurisdiction over the property. Seizure without process may be made if:
(1) the seizure is incident to an arrest or a search under a search warrant; (2) the property subject to seizure has been the subject of a prior judgment in favor of the state in a criminal injunction or forfeiture proceeding; or (3) the law enforcement agency has probable cause to believe that the property was used or is intended to be used in a gambling violation and the delay occasioned by the necessity to obtain process would result in the removal, loss, or destruction of the property.
Subd. 3.Not subject to replevin.
Property taken or detained under subdivision 2 is not subject to a replevin action, but is considered to be in the custody of the law enforcement agency subject only to the orders and decrees of the court having jurisdiction over the forfeiture proceedings.
Property must be forfeited after a conviction for a gambling violation according to the following procedure:
(1) a separate complaint must be filed against the property describing it, charging its use in the specified violation, and specifying the time and place of its unlawful use;
(2) if the person charged with a gambling offense is acquitted, the court shall dismiss the complaint and order the property returned to the persons legally entitled to it; and
(3) if after conviction the court finds the property, or any part of it, was used in violation as specified in the complaint, it shall order that the property be sold or retained by the law enforcement agency for official use. Proceeds from the sale of forfeited property may be retained for official use and shared equally between the law enforcement agency investigating the offense involved in the forfeiture and the prosecuting agency that prosecuted the offense involved in the forfeiture and handled the forfeiture proceedings.
Property may not be seized or forfeited under this section if the owner shows to the satisfaction of the court that the owner had no notice or knowledge or reason to believe that the property was used or intended to be used in violation of this section.
609.763 Lawful gambling fraud.
Subdivision 1. Crime. A person is guilty of a crime and may be sentenced as provided in subdivision 2 if the person does any of the following:
(1) knowingly claims a lawful gambling prize using altered or counterfeited gambling equipment;
(2) knowingly claims a lawful gambling prize by means of fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation;
(3) manipulates any form of lawful gambling or tampers with any gambling equipment with intent to influence the outcome of a game or the receipt of a prize; or
(4) knowingly places or uses false information on a prize receipt or on any other form approved for use by the gambling control board or the alcohol and gambling enforcement division of the department of public safety.
Subd. 2. Penalty. A person who violates subdivision 1 may be sentenced as follows:
(1) if the dollar amount involved is $500 or less, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor;
(2) if the dollar amount involved is more than $500 but not more than $2,500, the person is guilty of a gross misdemeanor; and
(3) if the dollar amount involved is more than $2,500, the person is guilty of a felony and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than three years or to payment of a fine of not more than $6,000, or both.
Subd. 3. Aggregation; jurisdiction. In a prosecution under this section, the dollar amounts obtained in violation of subdivision 1 within any 12-month period may be aggregated and the defendant charged accordingly. When two or more offenses are committed by the same person in two or more counties, the defendant may be prosecuted in any county in which one of the offenses was committed for all of the offenses aggregated under this subdivision.