Arizona Gambling Sites - A Guide to Gambling In Arizona
Arizona, also known at the Grand Canyon state, is one of the four corner states. Arizona borders New Mexico, California, Utah, Mexico and Nevada.
Southern Arizona and northern Arizona are drastically different. Southern Arizona is a desert, with hot summers and mild winters. Northern Arizona is full of pine, Douglas fir and spruce trees. Northern Arizona also has deep canyons and moderate summers, with a heavy snowfall in the winter.
One fourth of Arizona is Indian reservation with 27 different federally recognized Native American tribes. Indian reservation casinos are the only casinos permitted in all of Arizona.
Although, all for-profit casinos are banned in Arizona, there are plenty of other gambling opportunities such as online gambling.
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Online Gambling and Arizona Law
Is Online Gambling Legal in Arizona?
Yes, online gambling in Arizona is legal for almost every game. There are no laws written in Arizona to prohibit any type of online gambling, except for fantasy sports leagues.
According to ARS 13-3303, fantasy advice given to Arizona residents for a fee is a Class 5 felony.
There have been attempts to legalize fantasy leagues in Arizona, but it has failed so far.
Surprisingly, many Arizona residents don't realize this is a law in their state, and they still enter competitions online. Residents pay to be a part of the competition, and even if they win, the competition is unable to pay them because of Arizona state law.
Casino games, sports betting, race betting, lottery and bingo are all legal in Arizona - just stay away from fantasy sports.
Can I Get Arrested for Gambling Online in Arizona?
Since all types of online gambling in Arizona is legal except for fantasy sports, no, you can't get arrested for gambling online in Arizona.
If you pay or enter a fantasy sports competition, you're not breaking the law.
If you're running an illegal fantasy sports competition and paying residents that live in Arizona, then you can and probably will be arrested.
Breaking down what exactly is or isn't legal in Arizona. Gambling Venues in Arizona
Where to gamble in the state of Arizona. The History of Gaming Laws in Arizona
A brief history of Arizona laws regarding gambling. The Furture of Gambling in Arizona
What does the future of gambling look like in Arizona?
More Gambling Laws in Arizona
According to section 13-3301 of the Arizona Revised Statues, gambling is defined as:
"one act of risking or giving something of value for the opportunity to obtain a benefit from a game or contest of chance or skill or a future contingent event but does not include bona fide business transactions which are valid under the law of contracts including contracts for the purchase or sale at a future date of securities or commodities, contracts of indemnity or guarantee and life, health or accident insurance."
The short answer for the question, "is gambling legal in Arizona?" is yes, if it's regulated gambling. Section 13-3301 of the Arizona Revised Statutes defines regulated gambling as:
(i) It is operated and controlled in accordance with a statute, rule or order of this state or of the United States.
(ii) All federal, state or local taxes, fees and charges in lieu of taxes have been paid by the authorized person or entity on any activity arising out of or in connection with the gambling.
(iii) If conducted by an organization which is exempt from taxation of income under section 43-1201, the organization's records are open to public inspection.
(iv) Beginning on June 1, 2003, none of the players is under twenty-one years of age.
Casino Games: Legal with restrictions
For-profit casinos are prohibited in Arizona - unless they're an Indian reservation casino. The Indian reservation casinos throughout the state have poker, blackjack and about every other game you could find in a Las Vegas casino.
If none of the Tribal casinos "hit the spot," it's only a short trip to Las Vegas.
Sports Betting: Illegal unless offshore
Being a bookmaker in the state of Arizona, online or offline, is illegal.
According to section 13-3307 of the Arizona Revised Statues, possession of gambling records is a class 1 misdemeanor. Here's how they define possession of gambling records:
"A person commits possession of gambling records if he knowingly possesses any book, writing, paper, instrument, article, electronically-produced data, computer software and programs, discs, tapes or other tangible or intangible method of recording information knowing or having reason to know that it arises out of, or was made in connection with, gambling in violation of this chapter."
As long as you're not planning on being a bookie or betting at one in Arizona, you're in the clear. Arizona law doesn't prohibit residents from placing bets online.
Racing Betting: Legal with restrictions
Dog and horse racing are allowed in Arizona with the restriction that horse and dog races are not allowed to occur on the same day, in the same county.
Currently, Arizona has two horse race tracks, and just recently closed their last dog track.
You must be 21 or older to place bets on races.
Off-track betting is available at several restaurants in the state for both of the horse race tracks in Arizona along with out of state tracks.
Arizona does have a state regulated lottery.
According to the State of Arizona Departments of Revenue:
"Bingo is legal in the State of Arizona for recreational purposes or to allow certain types of nonprofit organizations to generate funds to support their activities."
You can find bingo halls and a casino with bingo at multiple places throughout Arizona.
Social Gambling: Legal
Social gambling is legal in Arizona, so feel free to play any casino game as long as it fits into the definition of a social gambling, such as not profiting from these games.
Section 13-3301 of the Arizona Revised Statutes, social gambling is defined as:
"gambling that is not conducted as a business and that involves players who compete on equal terms with each other in a gamble if all of the following apply:
(a) No player receives, or becomes entitled to receive, any benefit, directly or indirectly, other than the player's winnings from the gamble.
(b) No other person receives or becomes entitled to receive any benefit, directly or indirectly, from the gambling activity, including benefits of proprietorship, management or unequal advantage or odds in a series of gambles.
(c) Until June 1, 2003, none of the players is below the age of majority. Beginning on June 1, 2003, none of the players is under twenty-one years of age.
(d) Players "compete on equal terms with each other in a gamble" when no player enjoys an advantage over any other player in the gamble under the conditions or rules of the game or contest."
This means you can freely to play any casino game in your home as long as no one profits from it.
Arizona has specific laws regarding crane machines. According to section 13-3312 of the Arizona Revised Statutes:
"A. It is unlawful for a person to knowingly cause or commit the following actions:
- 1. Altering or maintaining a crane game so that the claw is physically unable to grasp exposed prizes.
- 2. Displaying prizes in a crane game in a manner so that the claw is physically incapable of grasping exposed prizes.
- 3. Misrepresenting the value of prizes in crane games.
- 4. Using cash or currency as prizes in crane games or awarding prizes in crane games which are redeemable for cash or currency.
B. A person who violates this section is guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor."
Arizona also has laws about amusement games such as carnival games. According to section 13-3311 of the Arizona Revised Statutes:
"A. Before any person conducts an amusement gambling intellectual contest or event pursuant to section 13-3301, paragraph 1, subdivision (d), item (iii), the person shall register with the attorney general's office.
B. Within ten days following the award of all prizes in connection with an amusement gambling intellectual contest or event, the person conducting the contest or event shall file with the attorney general's office the names and addresses of all persons who have won prizes in connection with the contest or event.
C. For each amusement gambling intellectual contest or event held, the person conducting the event shall file with the attorney general's office a sworn statement under oath that no increment has been added to the established purchase price for the product in connection with the gambling event.
D. This section does not apply to organizations that have qualified for an exemption from taxation of income under section 43-1201, paragraph 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10 or 11 or to academic competitions conducted by school districts or charter schools that award cash, prizes or scholarships to participants."
Gambling Venues in Arizona
Arizona has over 20 Indian reservation casinos, but here are the top 10 according to online reviews:
1 - Talking Stick Resort
9800 E Talking Stick Way
Scottsdale, AZ 85256
2 - Casino Arizona
100 River Oaks Drive
Wetumpka, AL 36092
3 - Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino
5040 Wild Horse Pass Blvd
Chandler, AZ 85226
4 - Vee Quiva Hotel & Casino
15091 S Komatke Ln
Laveen, AZ 85339
5 - Lone Butte Casino
1077 S Kyrene Rd
Chandler, AZ 85226
6 - Fort McDowell Casino
10424 N Fort Mcdowell Rd
Fort McDowell, AZ 85264
7 - Harrah's Ak-Chin
15406 Maricopa Rd
Maricopa, AZ 85139
8 - Cliff Castle Casino Hotel
555 W Middle Verde Rd
Camp Verde, AZ 86322
9 - Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort
22181 Resort Blvd
Flagstaff, AZ 86004
10 - Desert Diamond Casino - West Valley
9431 W Northern Ave
Glendale, AZ 85305
History of Gambling in Arizona
The IGRA, Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, was enacted which established the framework for indian gaming.
16 different Indian tribes signed compacts with the state of Arizona, and by the end of 1994, 10 casinos had been opened.
The Arizona horse and dog tracks sue Governor Hull in order to get a new compact allowing the tracks to have slot machines.
Gavernor Janet Napolitano signed compacts with five more tribes.
Comprehensive surveillance and security are required at all tribal casinos.
An increase on the minimum wager you can place per hand in blackjack and poker were increased.
Two new Tribal casinos opened including the first casinos opened by the tribe Navajo Nation.
Arizona established the State Gaming Agency within the Department of Racing.
The Superior Court rules that the Governor of Arizona no longer has the authority to negotiate with the Salt River tribe about slot machines or keno. The decisions would be left up to the Arizona Supreme Court.
Authority to sign new compacts with the Indian tribes is returned to Governor Hull, and he signs compacts with 16 tribes.
Blackjack is allowed in Tribal casinos.
Promotional award poker and house-banked poker games are allowed in Tribal casinos.
Tribal-State gaming compacts will automatically revew every 10 years, unless there's a non-compliance issue.
- Arizona Department of Gaming Website:
- Arizona Administrative Code
- Where a variety of topics including dog and horse racing, lottery and gaming are discussed.
- Arizona Administrative Code for the State Lottery
- Information on Arizona Bingo Laws.
- Further Information About Arizona Gambling History.
Arizona Gambling Future
Currently, Arizona has a wide variety of gambling available, including Tribal casinos with every casino game, race betting, sports betting, a state lottery and bingo.
The only two gaming activities that are prohibited are fantasy sports and for-profit casinos that are not tribal casinos.
There has been a push to legalize fantasy sports, and I wouldn't be surprised if it were to be legalized within the next few years.
I don't see any for-profit casinos being legalized within Arizona in the near future. The state already has a good handful of Tribal casinos, and on top of that, Las Vegas is only a short drive or flight.