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Matthew Jones
Author:
Matthew Jones
Last Updated:
November 15, 2020
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This author was thoroughly tested and approved by the experts at BettingBilly.com before joining the editorial board to ensure a high content quality.
Author Bio:
 
Matthew is a former journalist and entrepreneur. Before he turned 18 he'd already started an online-shop, grew it to more than $1m in sales and sold it. Together with Richard he is now in charge of BettigBilly. His specialties are gambling mathematics and creating winning betting strategies.
Matthew is a former journalist and entrepreneur. Before he turned 18 he'd already started an online-shop, grew it to more than $1m in sales and sold it. Together with Richard he is now in charge of BettigBilly. His specialties are gambling mathematics and creating winning betting strategies.

Legal Online Sports Betting 2020

If you want to have a safe sports wagering experience, playing at legal online sports betting sites is the way to go. Bettors can make concessions when it comes to many things betting-related, but safety and security should never be an issue.

The online betting site you choose has to operate legally, have a valid license, and vouch for the safety of all transactions made on it.

Legal online betting sites - Why do I need them?

Players need legal betting sites for several reasons. Chief among these is that legal betting sites will never defraud them. Legal sports betting operators adhere to stringent regulations and would never even think of engaging in criminal activity.

What is more, if there is any suspicion of fraudulent behavior of any legal online betting provider, the state will charge the operator in a criminal case. This guarantees that the bettor has adequate legal protection and shouldn't worry about his deposits or winnings.

Another important thing that you get when betting at legal sports sites is their complete dedication to providing a legitimate betting experience.

Obtaining an online sports betting license means cutting through red tape bureaucracy. This means that the wagering site has put a lot of effort, energy, and money to get that wagering license. They wouldn't think of engaging in any criminal activity as that would mean losing that hard-earned license.

Finally, legal sports betting sites have a proven track record. Top sports betting sites have been in the industry for a long time and have never had a black mark next to their name. Wagering with these legal sports betting sites is as safe as a wagering experience can be. This is what you should always be aiming for and, as we said, there are no compromises in this regard.

How to choose a legal sports betting site?

When choosing a legal online sports betting site, you should look for several things. The first aspect that you should cover is whether the sports betting site has a wagering license.

The next is to make sure that the license is valid and hasn't expired or been revoked. Lastly, checking to see if online sports betting is legal in your state is also important. Our comparison tables of sports betting sites come with a state-specific filter so that should make things a lot easier for you.

Look for a betting license

This is the first thing that you should cover. If a sports wagering site doesn't list anywhere that it has an online sports betting license, it's an easy choice for you. Don't bet at that site. If you proceed, you are doing it at your own risk.

Should things go sour with this unregulated sportsbook, you will have no one to turn to. There will be no regulatory body to report the sports wagering site to and you will be left ruing your bad decision.

On the other hand, if you are betting at a legal sports betting site, this will never happen. If there is a dispute between you and the operator, you will have the gambling authority vouching for you. This is invaluable when going up against a big sports betting company with a lot of resources.

Check if the license is valid

Once you establish that the sports betting site has a license, you have to check if that license is valid. You should do the following to ascertain this:

  • First, find the regulatory body (it should be listed at the bottom of the betting site).
  • The next thing to do is to go to the gambling authority's website.
  • Once there, find the list of licensed sportsbooks with valid licenses.
  • If you see your betting provider there, you are good to go and can continue wagering there.

Checking these things is important because lots of sports wagering sites operate with an expired or revoked license. This is the same as operating without a license at all and carries the same risks for you.

See if the online site is legal in your state

The last thing to check is whether the sports wagering site's operations are compatible with online sports betting laws in your state.

This is easier said than done. You would have to dig through your state's legislature and statutes and that's never a pleasant experience.

Fortunately for you, our comparison tables of sports betting sites are fully customizable with a state filter. This means that you can easily see if online sports betting is legal in your state or not.

Understanding online sports betting laws

You must understand what types of legal sports betting your state allows you to engage in. This means that you have to go through your state's online gambling laws before you start wagering. As soon as you have done this, you should also check which types of sports betting are legal in your state.

Research state-specific laws

Different states come with different gambling and sports betting laws. This means that in some states, you will be allowed to gamble at online casinos, but not at sports betting sites. Some other states will allow for race betting, but won't let you bet on fantasy sports.

To check your state's stand on online sports betting, you would have to go to your state's gambling regulatory authority. For example, if you are from the State of New Jersey, you would have to go through the entire Sports Wagering Law found at the NJ's Division of Gaming Enforcement site.

However, checking for state-specific gambling laws shouldn't be so difficult and if you are betting through our site, it isn't. All sports betting sites listed here come with that all-important state betting filter. That will simplify things greatly for you as you won't have to go through those voluminous state laws.

Types of legal sports betting

Another thing that you should check while you are researching sports betting laws is what you can bet on. Different states allow bettors to make different types of sports bets.

For example, a state might allow you to place sports bets on online football and basketball games. However, it might have some restrictions when it comes to eSports betting. Similarly, a state may let you place hockey and baseball bets but may place restrictions on virtual sports betting.

Something similar is true of sports wagering markets too. Most states which allow sports betting will let you place bets on betting lines. However, some states may not allow you to bet on individual player markets.

Other criteria for choosing legal online betting sites

Checking for licenses is very important. However, there are other aspects of choosing a sports wagering site that you should also cover. Most legal sports betting operators will have these, but you have to check to be sure.

Security

As any bet guide will tell you, if your transactions aren't secure, there's no point in sports wagering. Most people bet to makes some winnings from the process, so it is really bad if they lose them because a site has been hacked.

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To make sure that this never happens to you, always wager at sites that come with the latest security certificates and enable 256-bit encryption of data. These two things will give you peace of mind that all transactions are secure and coded data cannot be decrypted.

Sports betting offer

Once you are sure that a betting site has a license and is secure, you can start looking at its sports betting offer. This is the fun part of the search as sports betting is why you are going through all of these things in the first place.

This means that if you are an NFL bettor, you should look for a wagering site that accepts NFL parlays. Similarly, if you are into baseball, you should first check that the site lets you place MLB and other baseball wagers.

And it's not just the list of sports that you need to analyze. Going through the sports betting markets on offer is also essential. Most legal sports betting operators offer tons of markets. For example, a single NBA game may sometimes come with close to a hundred different bet propositions.

Checking that a sports betting site lets you bet on the markets that you like is essential when making the best bet possible. This is especially true when you get some value betting picks from Billy.

Let's say Billy has suggested that you bet on the LA Galaxy to put three goals past Toronto FC. However, the betting site that you wager at doesn't let you place this MLS bet.

The wagering operator's inferior betting offer means that you will likely miss out on some cash windfall courtesy of Billy's expertise.

Bonuses

Another thing to pay attention to when choosing a betting site is whether it has quality bonuses. There are different types of bonuses and promotions that a legal sports betting site might have. These are some of them:

  • Welcome bonus offers,
  • Reload bonuses,
  • Cash-out options,
  • Cashback,
  • Bet insurance,
  • Loyalty programs,
  • Free bets.

A top-quality sports betting provider will have most of these if not all. Welcome bonuses are usually the most enticing of this bunch. They often come in the form of matched first deposit offers up to a certain amount of money.

For example, a wagering site might offer a 100% matched first deposit bonus up to $100. This means that the sports betting operator will double new players' deposits on all first bets up to $100. This is a decent offer and is a good sign of a quality wagering provider.

Mobile app

Most online wagers these days are placed via a mobile device and most quality sportsbooks have great apps. That's why it would be unusual if you are wagering at a sports betting operator that doesn't offer a mobile app.

This is a sign that the sportsbook is not keeping up with the times. And with so many online bookmakers offering excellent mobile solutions, why would you choose one that doesn't, right? As a rule of thumb, always go with sportsbooks that have mobile apps that are easy to navigate, are safe, and make transactions simple.

Customer support

The last thing that a legal online sports betting site must have is a 24/7 customer support service. This is because you don't want to be in a situation in which you have a problem, but no one to talk to.

Most online sports betting sites have round the clock help desk, so choosing one which doesn't is a bad choice.

In addition to 24/7 customer service, a vast number of bookmakers also enable live chat, email, and phone support. This has become an industry-standard, so you shouldn't settle for anything less in this regard.

Legal sports betting: Try it now at one of the top 5 betting sites

Now that you know how important wagering at legal betting sites is, you should try it out. Don't be scared if you don't know your state's gambling laws as we have got you covered.

When you bet at the top 5 betting sites listed here, you can always rest assured that you are wagering legally. Moreover, these sites come with a customizable state betting filter and that's all you need for a legal bet.

 
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Conclusion: Only bet at legal sports wagering sites
You have lots of options with regards to sports betting. However, when it comes to legal sports betting, there is only one choice. Wager at legal online sports betting providers only.

This means that before you place a bet, you have to check for several things. These include factors such as a valid license, state gambling laws, and a site's security. Only after you cover these, you can start betting.

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