Louisiana Gambling Sites - Laws, Regulations, and Online Gambling Guide
Louisiana has a handful of beautiful riverboat casinos, plenty of charitable gambling to go around, and some pari-mutuel horse racing.
But Louisiana's history with gambling has been a love/hate one, like when they legalized the state lottery, outlawed it, then legalized it again.
But where does Louisiana stand along the many states considering regulated online gambling?
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Online Gambling and Louisiana Law
Is Online Gambling Legal in Louisiana?
Online gambling is illegal in Louisiana.
Here's what the Louisiana Revised Statutes says about online gambling:
"Gambling has long been recognized as a crime in the state of Louisiana and despite the enactment of many legalized gaming activities remains a crime.
Gambling by computer is the intentional conducting, or directly assisting in the conducting as a business of any game, contest, lottery, or contrivance whereby a person risks the loss of anything of value in order to realize a profit when accessing the Internet, World Wide Web, or any part thereof by way of any computer, computer system, computer network, computer software, or any server.
Whoever commits the crime of gambling by computer shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both."
Can I Get Arrested for Gambling Online in Louisiana?
Since it's illegal to gamble online in Louisiana, yes, you can get arrested for it, but you probably won't.
We couldn't find any residents who've been arrested for gambling online.
The Louisiana law enforcement is more interested in taking down residents who run illegal online casinos.
Our advice, of course, is to obey the law of the land, regardless of jurisdiction. At the same time, we're aware that some of our readers want guidance about risk levels. We think that playing a hand of blackjack on the web is one of the lowest-risk crimes you can imagine in Louisiana or elsewhere.
With this kind of business, it's traditional for law enforcement to focus on the providers rather than the customers. Online gambling of any kind is usually low on law enforcement's radar, although running an illicit gambling operation presents considerable risk.
Is Louisiana Going to Legalize Online Gaming?
It's unclear if Louisiana is going to legalize online gaming. The state has been looking into state-regulated online gaming since 2013, but we've seen no progress toward online gambling.
How do I choose a good and safe offshore gaming site?
If you're in Louisiana and looking to play on the web, an offshore gambling site is your most realistic option. As a bettor, the legal risks are minimal, but the other risks are considerable. You need to worry about whether the site is going to provide you with good customer service and reasonable payout times.
If you read the reviews on our site and keep the following in mind, you'll have a better time finding a place to play.
- Game Variety
The first thing you should do is check to see if the site has the game you're interested in playing. Also check out what other games they have available, in case you occasionally want to switch up the games you play.
It's silly to sign up for an all-slots site if your goal is to place sports bets and play blackjack.
If tournaments are something you're planning on participating in, make sure the site you're looking at offers good ones. Look at the tournaments page for information like prizes, frequency, and rules.
- Bonus Terms and Conditions
Nobody likes reading the fine print, but you might want to when it comes to bonus terms. Almost every site you look at will have a sign-up bonus, but read the fine print to learn about the conditions you have to meet in order to get the bonus. One condition you might have to meet is how much you have to wager.
- Read Reviews
Reading reviews might be the most important research you do before signing up for a site. Focus on member reviews, not a forum or website reviews. Member reviews tell you all you need to know about a site, including what to expect, what they liked, and what they didn't like.
We think the reviews on our site are as even-handed and comprehensive as any you'll find on the internet. Read them, and let us know if you agree.
- Customer Complaints
Do a search for the name of the site you're considering and the word complaint, and you might find some members who have filed complaints about the site. Reading these can alert you to common problems people have with the site.
- Deposit Options
See what forms of deposit the site accepts. You want to make sure there's a form you're familiar with.
- Cash Out Options
It's also important to see how you can get your money back out when you win. Not every deposit option is available as a withdrawal option. It's always a good idea to find out before you make a deposit to make sure a good option is available.
- Contact Customer Service
Chat with customer service to get a feel for their professionalism. You also want to keep in mind how long it takes them to get back to you. If you become a member and have a real issue, you don't want to wait a week for a response.
- Restricted States
Some sites have restrictions on who they can offer their games to. Make sure the site you're considering can legally offer their gaming to your state.
- Licensing Jurisdiction
Look into the site's licensing jurisdiction to find out what restrictions the site has to follow. Some areas have stricter restrictions than others.
- Longevity of Business
See how long a site has been in business. A site that has been in business for five years will have both more information and a more reliable reputation than a site that has been in business for five months.
Are Daily Fantasy Sports Legal in Louisiana?
No, daily fantasy sports are not legal in Louisiana.
But it's not because of a lack of resident interest. Several attempts have been made in the past to legalize daily fantasy sports; one attempt was as recent as 2016.
Here's some information from the ESPN website about the history of daily fantasy sports in Louisiana:
"In 1991, then-Attorney General William J. Guste, Jr. concluded that a 1-900 number fantasy football contests constituted illegal gambling, but nothing in the 1991 memo touched on DFS-specific issues. The Louisiana legislature considered a DFS bill during the 2016 session."
Breaking down what exactly is or isn't legal in Louisiana. Gambling Venues in Louisiana
Where to gamble in the state of Louisiana. The History of Gaming Laws in Louisiana
A brief history of Louisiana laws regarding gambling. Additional Information
Still have questions? Check out these links. The Future of Gambling in Louisiana
What does the future of gambling look like in Louisiana?
More Gambling Laws in Louisiana
The Louisiana Revised Statutes defines gambling as the following:
"(a) Gambling is the intentional conducting, or directly assisting in the conducting, as a business, of any game, contest, lottery, or contrivance whereby a person risks the loss of anything of value in order to realize a profit.
(b) Whoever commits the crime of gambling shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both."
Casino Games: Legal
All your favorite casino games can be found in Louisiana casinos, including poker, blackjack, roulette, craps, and slot machines.
Louisiana has a mixture of tribal casinos, land-based casinos, and riverboat casinos.
Here's what the Louisiana State Legislature says about gaming activities on rivers and waterways:
"The development of a historic riverboat industry is important to the economy of the state of Louisiana in that it will assist in the continuing growth of the tourism industry and thus will benefit the general welfare of our citizens and create new jobs. It is the intent of this Chapter to utilize Louisiana resources, goods, and services in the operation and construction of riverboats to the extent allowable by law, as defined in this Chapter.
An integral part of riverboat operation and profitability is the offering of regulated gaming, among other activities."
Sports and Race Betting: Pari-Mutuel Only
Louisiana allows pari-mutuel betting on horse racing.
Here's what the Louisiana State Legislature says about pari-mutuel wagering:
"The commission shall make rules governing, permitting, and regulating the wagering on horse races under the form of mutuel wagering by patrons, known as pari-mutuel wagering. Only those persons receiving a license from the commission may conduct this type of wagering, and shall restrict this form of wagering to a space within the race meeting grounds. All other forms of wagering on the result of horse races are illegal, and all wagering on horse races outside the enclosure where horse races have been licensed by the commission is illegal."
Here's what the Louisiana State Legislature says about other track wagering:
"The commission may make rules regulating pari-mutuel wagering known as other track wagering.
With the consent of the commission, an association may accept wagers at its facility for the entire racing card scheduled on horse racing events of regional, national, and international interest conducted at another track outside of this state, and transmitted either by simulcast or other means of video transmission, pursuant to a contract with the association or other entity conducting the event."
Greyhound racing is outlawed in Louisiana.
Louisiana has a state-regulated lottery.
Here's some information about the state lottery from the Louisiana Lottery website:
"Louisiana Lottery Corporation began in 1991 after the 1990 state Legislature proposed a state lottery (ACT 1045) as a way to generate revenue without increasing taxes. Due to the Lottery's unique operations, the Legislature recognized a corporate structure would suit it best.
Voters also liked the idea and passed a constitutional amendment in 1990 creating the LLC by a 7 to 3 margin.
In 2011, the Lottery celebrated the 20th Anniversary of the sale of its first scratch-off on Sept. 6, 1991.
In 2003, voters passed another constitutional amendment to dedicate Lottery proceeds to the Minimum Foundation Program that funds public education in Louisiana."
As for where the money from the Louisiana Lottery goes, prize winners get 53%, the state treasury gets 35%, the lottery retailers get 5.5%, and 6% goes to lottery operations.
Louisiana Lottery games include:
- Scratch Offs
- Mega Millions
- Easy 5
- Pick 4
- Pick 3
Bingo: Charitable Only
Charitable organizations may hold charitable games, including bingo, raffles, pull tabs, and more.
The Louisiana Charitable Raffles, Bingo and Keno Licensing Law define a charitable organization as:
"a nonprofit board, association, corporation, or other organization domiciled in this state and qualified with the United States Internal Revenue Service for an exemption from federal income tax"
Here are the approved games for charitable organizations according to the Louisiana Charitable Raffles, Bingo and Keno Licensing Law:
"(1) The game of chance commonly known as raffle or raffles played by drawing for prizes or the allotment of prizes by chance, by the selling of shares, tickets, or rights to participate in such game or games, and by conducting the game or games accordingly.
(2) The game of chance commonly known as bingo or keno played for prizes with cards bearing numbers or other designations, five or more in one line, the holder covering numbers, as objects, similarly numbered, are drawn from a receptacle, and the game being won by the person who first covers a previously designated arrangement of numbers on such a card.
(3) The game of chance commonly known as pull-tabs played for prizes with cards or tickets and as defined in R.S. 4:725 or played as electronic pull-tabs as provided in R.S. 4:733.
(4) Electronic video bingo as provided for in R.S. 4:724 and as defined by rules of the office.
(5) Fund-raising events generally known as "Las Vegas Nights" or "Casino Nights" as provided for in R.S. 4:729 as defined by rules of the office."
Some general restrictions on charitable gaming in Louisiana include the following:
"No licensee shall hold, operate, or conduct any game of chance under this Chapter more often than on fifteen days in any one calendar month.
The total amount of prizes which may be awarded in any one session by a licensee shall not exceed four thousand five hundred dollars in cash or other thing or things of value."
Social Gambling: Illegal
No Louisiana laws touch on "social gambling," but based on the laws that are written on gambling, social gambling is illegal. Gambling is only authorized in licensed casinos and businesses licensed to offer slot machines.
But it's not uncommon to find small-stakes home games, which the law enforcement seems to tolerate in Louisiana.
Gambling Venues in Louisiana
Louisiana casinos offer about every casino game you could want, from craps to slot machines and everything in between. Here are 10 of the casinos located throughout Louisiana, including some land-based, riverboats, and tribal casinos.
1 - Coushatta Casino Resort
777 Coushatta Dr
Kinder, LA 70648
Phone number: (800) 584-7263
2 - Golden Nugget Lake Charles
2550 Golden Nugget Boulevard
Lake Charles, LA 70601
Phone number: (337) 508-777
3 - Paragon Casino Resort
711 Paragon Place
Marksville, LA 71351
Phone number: (318) 253-1946
4 - L'Auberge du Lac Resort
777 Ave L'Auberge
Lake Charles, LA 70601
Phone number: (866) 580-7444
5 - Delta Downs
2717 Delta Downs Dr
Vinton, LA 70668
Phone number: (800) 589-7441
6 - Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles
100 Westlake Ave
Westlake, LA 70669
Phone number: (610) 241-1618
7 - Treasure Chest Casino
5050 William Blvd
Kenner, LA 70065
Phone number: (504) 443-8000
8 - Cypress Bayou Casino Hotel
832 Martin Luther King Rd
Charenton, LA 70523
Phone number: (337) 923-7284
9 - Choctaw Pines Casino
149 Chahta Trails
Dry Pong, LA 71423
Phone number: (318) 648-7773
10 - Boomtown Bossier City
300 Riverside Dr
Bossier City, LA 71111
Phone number: (318) 746-0711
History of Gambling in Louisiana
Governor Louis Billouart de Kerrierec opens the first government run casino.
Governor Murphy Foster closes down the Louisiana State Lottery.
Pari-mutuel betting on horse racing at fairgrounds is legalized.
The state negotiates compacts with three Native American tribes to allows to allow them to open casinos on their tribal land.
The committee is researching the possibility of bringing internet gambling to Louisiana.
New Orleans, Louisiana is now exempt from the ban on gambling.
The Louisiana State Lottery is created.
The Louisiana State Lottery is legalized again. 15 riverboat casinos are approved. The first land based casino is approved also.
Racetracks are now permitted to have slot machines. Gambling by computer is added to the laws in the gambling statues.
The Future & Your Views
Louisiana offers a variety of gambling options, and aside from their ban of internet gambling, they've been a progressive state in the gambling department.
We don't know if you'll see many changes coming to Louisiana's gaming soon, but Louisiana gambling sites are definitely being considered.