Virginia Online Poker
Virginia, or Old Dominion as it is also known, is one of many parts of the United States where legal online poker is not directly referenced in the state’s legislation. Essentially the activity is neither legal nor illegal, and many of the best poker sites in Virginia allow American poker players to play against other poker enthusiasts from across the States on sites licensed offshore.
In terms of land-based gambling, Virginia has plenty in common with other states in allowing betting on horse racing and having its own state lottery. However in the realm of legal online poker Virginia has not yet caught up with states such as Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware, where online poker is explicitly legal on sites licensed in-state.
Not only has legal online poker in Virginia not been properly debated, but the land-based variety is yet to be defined under laws regarding games of chance. As a result, it is tough to gauge whether laws outlawing games of chance where there is an ‘operator’ would include poker. All we can say with confidence is that there is no sign of any individual in Virginia being prosecuted for playing online poker.
The state, whose motto is ‘Sic Semper Tyrannis’, has the 12th highest population of all the United States of America. However there is nothing to suggest those of gambling age among the 8 million plus inhabitants will be able to take advantage of legal poker sites Virginia has licensed any time soon.
Is there much appetite for poker in Virginia?
There are certainly a number of top American poker pros who hail from Virginia, including World Series of Poker bracelet winner Dan Kelly, and a number of these individuals honed their skills playing on legal poker sites from their home state over the years. Nowadays if they want to play on the best poker sites in Virginia their options are limited, however many Virginia poker players have opted to leave the States in search of more options for legal online poker.
Have authorities in Virginia targeted online poker?
No, they have left this to the federal authorities by and large. Just as no player has been prosecuted for playing online poker in Virginia from the comfort of their own home, there has been no direct action taken against those sites offering online poker to Virginia residents specifically, except for at a federal level, such as on Black Friday.
Are there any casinos with poker rooms in Old Dominion?
Not at present, and as of 2018 there have been no suggestions that any such bricks and mortar venues will open up any time soon. That doesn’t mean Virginians don’t have options for live poker, of course – they can easily travel to nearby states to play at the card rooms there, where there are no restrictions on who plays poker as long as they are of legal gambling age.
Might the success of online poker in other states lead to progress in Virginia?
This seems unlikely. Virginia has little in the way of an established gambling environment, at least compared to those states where legal online poker has grown in recent years. Politicians in Virginia are likely not to see their state as being comparable to New Jersey, Nevada or Delaware, meaning a successful legal online poker framework in one of those jurisdictions is unlikely to lead to anything similar in Virginia. Indeed, even if federal online poker laws smoothed Virginia’s theoretical path to legal online poker, there is no guarantee that Old Dominion would be all that desperate to set things in motion in terms of the establishment of legal poker sites.