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Guide to Nevada Gambling & Casino Laws

Nevada Casino ListWhenever you think of casinos and gambling in the United States, you’re likely to imagine the flashing lights and buildings of the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada. But did you know that there’s more to Nevada gambling?

As the first state to allow gambling, it’s also the most strict.

Every casino and gambling operation in the state is regularly checked on and reviewed. Illegal gaming operators are also punished harshly. So, what’s allowed in Nevada, and how is it regulated? Let’s find out.

But first, if you’re interested in online casinos, here are our top picks.

NV Legal Online Casinos

#1

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#24

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#27

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#28

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#32

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#33

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More Online Casinos

Legal Nevada Gambling


nevada gambling

Types of Legal Nevada Online Gambling

As mentioned above, gambling is actually heavily regulated in Nevada despite popular belief. While Las Vegas is affectionately known as Sin City, there are loads of laws enforcing fair practice at the state’s casinos. Most likely, this is due to the casinos being the state’s biggest tourist attraction.

Here is a list of all the forms of legal gambling in the state as well as some other facts you need to know:

  • Year Nevada regulated gambling:
    • Casinos (1931)
    • Sports betting (1949)
    • Horseracing (1949)
    • Bingo (1993)
    • Online sports betting (2010)
    • Online poker (2013)
  • Estimated tax revenue from gambling: $745 million
  • Estimated gambling revenue: $11.1 billion
  • Nevada gambling age: 18 years for charity games, 21 years for casinos, and others
  • Smoking ban: Nevada’s smoking ban exempts businesses that restrict minors
  • Nevada online gambling: horse racing, sports betting and online poker are all legal

nevada gambling games

All Nevada Gambling Laws

As the first state to legalize gambling, there are a lot of industry greats operating within it. With an estimated revenue of $11.1 billion on the line, legal gambling operations and casinos have to toe the line in the Silver State.

While Nevada might be the most progressive state for the gambling industry, laws are still stern. Authorities are quick to crack down on illegal operations, and most crimes are a felony. In the Nevada Black Book, convicted gamblers are banned from all licensed venues.

And yes, Internet operations also get an updated list. So, only gamble through established and licensed services or not at all.

Nevada Gambling Laws

Legal Gaming in Nevada

As opposed to other states, no casino games are limited. This means that table games and gaming machines can operate freely.

Here’s a full list of games allowed at land-based casinos:

  • Blackjack
  • Poker
  • Slots
  • Video poker
  • Craps
  • Roulette
  • House-banked card games

Sports Betting & Lottery

Following the legalization of sports betting, sportsbooks can also operate within the Silver State. These can be tied to established casinos, but there are a few online sportsbooks.

However, there is no state lottery, despite calls from citizens. According to current regulations, it has to be approved by the state legislature and two isolated referendums statewide. This is the only type of gambling that has to pass through these measures.

Nevada Casinos Map

Legal Casino Regulations

In the state of NV, operators can apply for two types of licenses. These are categorized as restricted and unrestricted. However, there are limits to unrestricted permits. We’ve had to list them because all operations need to be hotel and casino venues.

  • Large jurisdictions (population of 700 000) – licenses depend on at least 200 hotel rooms, 24-hour dining options, and a bar with more than 30 seats for a resort casino.
  • Small jurisdictions (population between 100 000 and 700 000) – operators must offer at least 300 hotel rooms.

Restricted licenses are issued to venues such as bars, gas stations, and grocery stores. At most, bars can have 15 games, and stores can offer seven in several jurisdictions. Every casino operates under current laws, which can change.

Online Gambling Legislation

There are three types of online gambling available to residents of Nevada:

  1. Off-track betting
  2. Online poker
  3. Daily fantasy sports

But, DFS operations need a gaming license from the Nevada Gaming Control Board. So, most operators pulled out to avoid paying taxes (allegedly).

To clarify, off-track betting is allowed only if licensed sports betting operators are offering them. This includes apps and websites. The same goes for online poker rooms. Other casino games are only legally played at brick-and-mortar venues.


nevada casinos

List of Nevada Casinos

At our last count, there are over 200 casinos in the state. Since we don’t have the time to list them all, we’ve narrowed it down to the best of the best.

Here’s a list of the 15 most famous casinos in the Silver State:

  1. Caesars Palace, Las Vegas Strip.
  2. El Cortez Hotel & Casino, Downtown Las Vegas.
  3. South Point Casino, South Las Vegas.
  4. Red Rock Casino, Resort and Spa, Summerlin.
  5. Palms Casino Resort, Las Vegas.
  6. The Mirage Casino, Las Vegas Strip.
  7. The D Las Vegas, Downtown Las Vegas.
  8. Aria Resort & Casino, Las Vegas Strip.
  9. Golden Nugget Casino, Downtown Las Vegas.
  10. The Venetian, Las Vegas Strip.
  11. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe.
  12. Montbleu Resort, Casino and Spa, Lake Tahoe.
  13. Luxor Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas Strip.
  14. Excalibur Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas Strip.
  15. Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, Las Vegas Strip.

nevada gambling history

History of NV Gambling

Roughly five years after joining the Union, gambling became legal in 1869. However, a significant movement in 1909 forced anti-gambling laws into the books. Throughout prohibition, social gaming was permitted (probably as a distraction).

Then, on March 19th, 1931, casinos were fully licensed, and the Northern Club got the first gaming license. Closely following were the Las Vegas Club and Apache Hotel. All of these venues operated in what is now Fremont Street in Downtown Vegas.

Before the laws allowed it, underground gambling was buzzing. In fact, the Hoover Dam construction helped to create the “sin district”. Since alcohol and gambling were illegal in Boulder City, the sin district became infamous.

Conversely, gambling is still illegal in Boulder City. But alcohol has been legal since 1969.

Las Vegas Nevada Casinos

Nevada Gambling FAQs

Check out our other state guides:

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