The Online Lottery Bill was signed into law in Virginia. The Governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam, still needs to provide his signature for the sports and casino gamblings bills.
The Lottery Bill was passed by the House and Senate on February 20th and signed by Northam on March 4th. Shortly after that, on March 8th, legislators passed the Sportsbetting and Casino Bills.
- Virginia passed the Online Lottery Bill into law
- Sportsbetting and Casino Bills await signature from Gov. Ralph Northam
- Restrictions apply for gambling on sports
Online Lottery Arrives in Virginia
Virginia finally gets its Online Lottery Bill passed into law, becoming the seventh state in the US to legalize the online lottery.
On February 20th, the House and Senate passed the bill, and it waited for the signature of Governor Ralph Northam for three weeks. Finally, Northam signed the bill and sanctioned it into law on March 4th.
Virginia Lottery Law
So, now, Virginia will bring its lottery into the modern era. The law repeals the Virginia Code’s paragraph that prohibits the sale of lottery tickets online. There will be further views on what is considered a “ticket,” but players from Virginia will have the chance to play lotto games online. The law also amends the powers of the Lottery Board to include discretion over online lotto ticket sales.
Awaiting Approval for Sports and Online Casino Gambling
The Sportsbetting and Casino Bills, after much consideration, were finally passed by the House and the Senate on Sunday, Match 8th.
Sportbetting and Casino Tax Rates
For now, sports wagering operators will have to pay a 15% tax rate, which was the Senate’s preferred rate. As far as real money online casino goes, the House wanted it to be from 15% to 28%, while the Senate from 27% to 40%.
They agreed to split the difference and set casino taxes between 18% and 30%. Operators would have to pay $250,000 for a three-year-long license, and $200,000 for license renewals.
Virginia Cities Referendum
Portsmouth, Bristol, Norfolk, Danville, and Richmond will be the five cities to have the chance to open a land-based casino. There will be local referendums in each city, that will start as early as November.
In these referendums, residents of those cities will be asked their opinion on whether they would like to host a casino.
Restrictions for Sportsbetting
Four to twelve licenses for online sports gambling will be up for grabs. However, the licenses exclude collegiate sporting events. Players in Virginia will not be able to wager on college sports.
Official league data must be provided by licensed operators to settle in-play wagers. A professional sports team based or relocated to Virginia will be able to apply for a license.
Considering Danial Snyder, the Washington Redskins’ owner, has been lobbying Maryland lawmakers for a license at the beginning of the year, by moving to Virginia, it would be easier for him to get it.
Lottery, Gambling and Sportsbetting Legalization
It is unknown when the Governor will sign the two other bills. But it is highly unlikely for him to sign the Lottery bill passed by the House and Senate and veto two others that were also passed. The bill is expected to become law in the short-term.
Real Money Online Lottery and Slots
Some international online casinos already offer online lottery games for real money. You can play many online real money lotto games for different stakes, which have the Auto-Play and Choose-My-Numbers options, which randomly choose the numbers on the tickets.
Sometimes they also offer even bonuses or ticket discounts for the loyal players or players that want to participate in the draws with multiple tickets.
As such, online lotto games are starting to look and feel a lot like online slots, maybe partly because they are designed by the same software developers that design slots, such as Scientific Games or SBTech.
Whether online lotto and slot games will conflict remains to be seen. However, since the state of Virginia is about to legalize online casino and sportsbetting, too, the similarity between online lotto and slots would be insignificant. Both types of games would probably get their own fans base.