en Соединённые Штаты Америки
Language and location
English
United States United States

«Natural Born Bumhunters» Telegram-channel

Undergound e-magazine for those who choose the weakest games

Legal online poker USA: the DOJ reverses Wire Act opinion

During the last weeks, the online poker news site OnlinePokerReport announced that there was a possibility that the Department of Justice (DOJ) might modify its opinion about the 1961 Wire Act. This week, the Office of Legal Counsel confirmed the rumors with a new interpretation of the law: the Wire Act is not limited only to sports betting.

What is the 1961 Wire Act?

The Interstate Wire Act of 1961 (or Federal Wire Act) is a U.S federal law which prohibits the operation of interstate betting activities within the country. This old law  (it was signed by John F. Kennedy) was issued to have the power to tax, make, and enforce its laws. Of course, the big picture has changed a lot in almost 50 years, and now 4 states have even legalized online gambling and 3 of them have shared poker liquidity (Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey).

The original text of the Wire act says:

"Whoever being engaged in the business of betting or wagering knowingly uses a wire communication facility for the transmission in interstate or foreign commerce of bets or wagers or information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers on any sporting event or contest, or for the transmission of a wire communication which entitles the recipient to receive money or credit as a result of bets or wagers, or for information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both."

What is changing with the new DOJ opinion?

In 2011, under the Barack Obama administration, the DOJ concluded that the Wire Act only applied to sports betting. And now, 7 years later and because of one missing comma in the text, the DOJ has reversed its 2011 opinion and now considers that the Wire Act applies to any form of betting, including of course online poker.

The new DOJ opinion states:

"We conclude that the prohibitions of 18 U.S.C. § 1084(a) are not uniformly limited to gambling on sporting events or contests. Only the second prohibition of the first clause of section 1084(a), which criminalizes transmitting “information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers on any sporting event or contest,” is so limited. The other prohibitions apply to non-sports-related betting or wagering that satisfy the other elements of section 1084(a). We also conclude that section 1084(a) is not modified by UIGEA. This opinion supersedes and replaces our 2011 Opinion on the subject".

The document is available here and it is signed by Steven A. Engel, Assistant Attorney General of the Office of Legal Counsel. It worth mentioning that this storm has been orchestrated by the casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson, a GOP super-donor.

What are the possible impacts?

First of all, it is important to notice that the DOJ opinion is not automatically an order to enforce the law: it must pass the Congress, the Supreme Court and all the legal statements in the USA. Trump's administration is facing tons of problems (including a government shutdown) and we don't believe that a 1961 law is among his priorities. But all this is just assumptions, right now, no one knows the impact of the decision. In our opinion, only lawyers will benefit from this scenario because tons of legal paperwork will be needed in the meantime.

Currently, Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware share the player's pool and perhaps that model may face problems with the new DOJ interpretation. Also, the payment methods for poker rooms still operating in the USA may need to prepare for the future in case the DOJ opinion sustains.

Of course, it is very soon to conclude anything about his, and even if the DOJ opinion remains the same, it can happen that authorities don't enforce the law.

Conclusion

Although the consequences of the DOJ decision are unclear, we consider that online poker players will face no problems and even the poker rooms that still offer their services to US citizens will take this as an opportunity to evolve and attract more players, as less states will be willing to pursue gambling legalization before having 100% clear the DOJ opinion impact. Right now, we can only wait to see the effects on the US online gambling development, and maybe Pennsylvania, the latest state in approving a gambling regulation will be the one that tastes the new DOJ opinion consequences.

Bodog
Bodog
Paiwangluo Poker Network
High stakes action
Deposit bonus $1000
Rakeback n/a
converter
BetOnline
BetOnline
Chico Poker Network
High stakes action
Deposit bonus $1000
Rakeback VIP
converter
Black Chip Poker
Black Chip Poker
Winning Poker Network
High stakes action
Bitcoins accepted
Deposit bonus $1000
Rakeback 27% или VIP
Bovada
Bovada
Paiwangluo Poker Network
High stakes action
Deposit bonus $1000
Rakeback n/a
converter
Ignition Casino
Ignition Casino
Paiwangluo Poker Network
High stakes action
Good for beginners
Bitcoins accepted
Deposit bonus 1000$
Rakeback VIP
converter

Stay tuned on our Telegram channel for more EV+ news.

Related posts

Global Poker review: Play online poker legally in the USA
Legal update: New York and Kentucky introduce online gambling bills
New US private poker clubs added to WorldPokerDeals
How PokerStars and PartyPoker are competing for the US poker market?
Main features of the Winning Poker Network in 2018
или зарегистрируйтесь, чтобы оставлять комментарии.

Top posts

Over 6 Crores in GTD prizes in the last Indian poker promotions of 2018
Over 6 Crores in GTD prizes in the last Indian poker promotions of 2018
The most awaited tournament series of the year are now ongoing at the best Indian poker rooms of the moment. Recently we wrote about the...
Legal update: Sweden gambling licenses, UK bans gambling ads ban and more
Legal update: Sweden gambling licenses, UK bans gambling ads ban and more
Laws and regulations that rule the online poker world had many changes during 2018, meaning that 2019 will be a year marked by a gro...
Online poker update: partypoker MILLIONS, 888 Pick'Em and more
Online poker update: partypoker MILLIONS, 888 Pick'Em and more
In this article, we share with our players the latest 2018 promotions and the results of the major online events as the partypoker MILLIO...

Recent posts

partypoker strikes again: Team Online and millionaire Spins announced
partypoker strikes again: Team Online and millionaire Spins announced
partypoker is going all-in in 2019. Just this month the poker room
Playing online poker from restricted countries: 2019 survival guide
Playing online poker from restricted countries: 2019 survival guide
Playing online poker in 2019 could be quite a challenge if you live in a country with a restrictive gambling regulation; instead of movin...
LuckyBet added to our blacklist: non-payment, money confiscation
LuckyBet added to our blacklist: non-payment, money confiscation
Unfortunately, some online poker rooms decide to act unfairly and fail to fulfill their commitments to players and affiliates. Last year...
regs vs. PokerStars: is partypoker taking the lead?
regs vs. PokerStars: is partypoker taking the lead?
After the slash in the rewards program announced by PokerStars (the
European shared liquidity results in 2018
European shared liquidity results in 2018
The financial results of the 2018 exercise of the Spanish and French online gambling market were presented by DGOJ (Spanish gambling regu...

Best deal

United States United States