Michigan poker laws – legal michigan gambling options

With casinos aplenty and a strong gambling tradition, the state of Michigan is a natural fit for poker. Online poker has been a hit as well, but with its sharply rising popularity come a number of questions – about the law, about how poker is regulated, about how to play and more. We can’t answer every question you have about online poker in Michigan, but we can get you pointed in the right direction with our Guide to Playing Online Poker in Michigan.

We get this question from US poker players all of the time: “Can people in my state play online poker?” In this case, the answer to the question for Michigan is yes – it’s easy to setup an online poker account from Michigan and play for real money in a matter of minutes.

There are plenty of sites that accept players from Michigan – but we still suggest that players start their search with a room from this real money USA list. Latest Updates from Michigan’s Online Poker Efforts

Michigan had not been a possibility for legal and regulated online poker until 2017 when State Senator Mike Kowall introduced a bill and pushed it through the Regulatory Reform Committee. Later in the year, State Representative Brandt Iden introduced his own bill on his side of the legislature, which received an informational hearing and positive response but did not pass.

Silence for several months finally led to word at the end of March that Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof had been involved with a rewrite of SB.203. The new version would require a voter referendum on a state and/or local level for final approval. Considering Meekhof plays a significant role in setting the legislative agenda and had consulted with many stakeholders to avoid hurdles, many were hopeful for progress for the bill to see action on the floor.

The draft of the billcame to light in the middle of May, and it looked promising. Iden admitted that the biggest hurdle was coming to an agreement with the state’s Native American tribes, but he insisted that the talks were moving along well. Those tribal concerns became clearerby the end of the month, as Iden revealed it to be simple but substantive. Tribal leaders were concerned that the federal government could change the law at the national level to prohibit tribal casinos from offering online gambling while allowing it for commercial casinos. They wanted a provision in the bill to stop all casinos from benefiting from online gambling in that case, but Iden could not do it without losing the support of the casinos. Iden admitted that one concern could be a poison pill for HB.4926.

Nearly two weeks later, on June 12, 2018, Iden took his bill to the House floor, and after several readings, it passed by a vote of 68-40. While the legislature then went on its summer break, there is time for the Senate to work off the successful House bill and garner the votes necessary to pass it. Iden noted that the Lawful Internet Gaming Act will be “at the top of the agenda” in the fall of 2018.

Michigan lawmakers then met during the last week before Christmas, and on the final day of that session, Kowall made the most of his last day in office. He made a few last-minute changes to the bill and passed it through the Senate by a vote of 33-5. The amended bill then went back to Iden for House approval, which it received by a 71-38 vote. It was finished in the late-night hours, and the Lawful Internet Gaming Act went to Governor Rick Snyder for his signature.

Iden and Kowall expected the outgoing governor to sign the bill, but Snyder vetoed it on December 28. While he acknowledged that the lawmakers and stakeholders put a lot of work into the bill, Snyder believed the issue required more study as to how other states have handled legalized online poker and casino games, and how the new games would affect land-based gambling revenue and its allocations. The result was disappointing and disheartening for Iden, who spent much of the year touting the success of New Jersey’s online gambling market. Iden does plan to start over with new legislation in 2019 and hopes the new governor will sign it.

Illegal gambling: Any person or his or her agent or employee who, directly or indirectly, takes, receives, or accepts from any person any money or valuable thing with the agreement, understanding or allegation that any money or valuable thing will be paid or delivered to any person where the payment or delivery is alleged to be or will be contingent upon the result of any race, contest, or game or upon the happening of any event not known by the parties to be certain.

Before we get into the question of whether online poker is legal in MI, two important caveats. The first: smart gamblers always know the law firsthand, so be sure to review the complete Michigan statutes at this page. Second: we’re not lawyers and this isn’t legal advice. It’s just an aid for reading and understanding the basics of Michigan gambling law.

Interestingly, it’s more of a crime to win at illegal gambling than it is to lose. Section 750.314 details the charge of “winning at gambling” – if you win less than $50, that’s a misdemeanor, and if your winnings cross the $50 threshold, you could potentially be looking at jail time (by the letter of the law). It’s also a crime to lose, but no jail time is involved and the law allows you to sue the winner to recoup your losses.

There’s a long relationship between Michigan and gambling, but it wasn’t until the 1900s that the state began a slow and steady march to expand regulated gambling. Horse racing came first, with pari-mutuel wagering getting the nod in 1933. The lottery followed in 1972, and laws governing charitable gambling passed the same year. Following that burst of activity, proponents of regulated gambling had a bit of a wait before further progress was made. In fact, it would be nearly 20 years before additional options were introduced in the state. Regulated Michigan Gambling Options

What’s there to do for a gambler in Michigan seeking regulated choices? Plenty – you’ll find all of the major five regulated gambling formats on offer in Michigan. If you need a quick refresher, that means commercial casinos, tribal gambling options, pari-mutuel betting, and the state-run lottery. Casinos (commercial and tribal) are spread throughout the state, with the highest concentration in and around the Detroit area. Regulated Michigan Online Gaming Options