In 2006, the 6 billion dollar Internet gambling industry was dealt a hard blow by the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA.). The legislation, penned by Bill Frist, R-Tenn, was a last-minute addition to an unrelated piece of business which was immediately signed into law by then President George W. Bush. The industry and the public were caught unaware by the legislative maneuvering, which bypassed any substantial discussion in the media or Congress.
Poker players from coast to coast released a collective cry. Now, it seems that states are finding a way around Frist’s law. The taxpayers are having to shoulder the load of extra, excess legislation to maneuver around the UIGEA, but the progress continues.
Online Poker In New Jersey & Nevada
Since the UIGEA only outlaws how finances from gambling are handled and not the gambling itself, states that approve of gambling may yet be able to create a legal pathway for online casinos. Already, New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware have made it legal for citizens to play online poker for money. New Jersey and Nevada are well-known for their historical, physical casinos.
In fact, according to New Jersey law, only land-based casinos are eligible to obtain licenses for online play. Newcomers to the industry will either have to purchase an existing casino, or else start their own brick-and-mortar entertainment complex before venturing into virtual space.
In New Jersey, the virtual tables are open for business. Since 2013, anyone aged 21 or older within the state borders is able to kick back in the comfort of their own home, or hotel and enjoy the thrill of a poker game. You won’t have to worry with any formalities such as proper dress or behavior. You can do what you want while you raise the stakes on the next round of betting.
The Big 5
So far, there are five New Jersey casinos which allow gamble-from-home players:
In order to play, you will need to download special software. You will also need a Windows or Macintosh computer to use their poker client. Linux users are still not able to get into the game, but most of the sites offer an app for iPhone or Android smartphones. Imagine being able to play a few hands on the phone while on the train ride home from work. New Jersey has arrived in poker heaven!
On the technical side, the sites are limited to only allowing players who are in the borders of the state of New Jersey. So, if you are in the Newark Airport on a layover, but live in Oklahoma, you can play until your flight takes off. The sites use geolocation software to ensure that out-of-staters can’t get in on the action.
Poker is great fun and New Jersey has finally reclaimed its right to play this age-old game of skill and chance. So, fire up the laptop and get in on a few hands. You might even find an online tournament where you can test your mettle against the best in the state. If New Jersey is successful in allowing international players, you might soon be playing on a truly global scale!