All in One Guide to Indiana Gambling
Indiana is a gaming-friendly state. You can find casinos offering Class three gaming, a state lottery and charitable bingo style games.
Indiana has a harsher view on online gaming and social games though.
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Online Gambling and Indiana Law
Is Online Gambling Legal in Indiana?
Online gambling is illegal in Indiana.
Here's what the Indiana Code says about Internet gambling:
"An operator who knowingly or intentionally uses the Internet to engage in unlawful gambling:
(1) in Indiana; or
(2) with a person located in Indiana;
commits a Class D felony."
Unlawful gambling includes games of chance. (Poker is considered a game of chance in Indiana.)
Can I Get Arrested for Gambling Online in Indiana?
Yes, you can get arrested for gambling online in Indiana, and they charge you with a class D felony if you are arrested and prosecuted.
Although law enforcement hasn't been focusing on individuals gambling online, they still have grounds to arrest any resident taking part in online gambling which includes playing in or running an online casino.
We're committed to providing complete information on this site. Our recommendation is to obey the laws in your state, but we'd be remiss in our duty of providing complete information if we didn't point out that the risk of arrest and/or prosecution for online gambling is minimal. Enforcement activities traditionally focus on providers rather than customers.
Is Indiana Going to Legalize Online Gaming?
It's unlikely we will ever see any Indiana gambling sites. Indiana doesn't seem interested in adding any additional types of gambling to their state. If anything, Indiana is more strictly enforcing the laws now.
How do I Choose a Good Online Gaming Site?
If you're looking for "Indiana gambling sites," offshore companies, which accept bets from players in the state of Indiana, are an option for you.
You should take steps to make sure you're choosing a good gaming site. We offer some tips below.
- Read Reviews
- Game Variety
- Deposit Options
Search the Internet for some reviews about the gaming site you're considering. These reviews can give you more insight and tell you what you should expect.
You can also type in the name of the site and the word "complaint" or "member complaints" to find information on issues past members have had and how the site resolved them.
You should also include your state name in your search string. You'll be more likely to find reviews specific to Indiana gamblers that way.
If you're looking for an online gaming site, you already know what type of games you're looking for. Check what games the site offers to make sure they have both what you want and maybe something extra, in case you want to play a different type of game in the future.
It doesn't make sense to sign up for a website that specializes in live table games if you're committed to exclusively playing video poker, and vice versa. Know what you want to play and sign up at a site that offers those games.
Before signing up for a site, check what deposit options they have available. You want to make sure there's something you're familiar and comfortable with. You also want to make sure that the deposit options are convenient for you.
If the only deposit option that will work is Moneygram, and the closest Moneygram office is 100 miles away, you might want to consider a site with other banking options.
Are Offshore Gambling Sites Safe?
Generally, offshore gambling sites are safe if they're licensed.
Check out the type of license that the site you're considering has, and what the regulations they have to follow are. Some places are stricter than others and have more restrictions on what they can and can't offer. Some sites are unable to offer casino games to certain states.
You can also look into how long the site has been in business. If they have been in business for a long time, you know they must have some loyal customers who are happy with their service.
Many of the sites we recommend are happy to take action from gamblers in Indiana. We're confident that players who follow up on our recommendation won't be disappointed by the customer service at any of these properties.
Are Daily Fantasy Sports Legal in Indiana?
Paid daily fantasy sports are legal in Indiana.
According to section 4-33-24-1 of the Indiana Code:
"Paid fantasy sports game is not gambling"
Paid fantasy sports games are defined in the Indiana Code as the following:
"As used in this chapter, "paid fantasy sports game" means any fantasy or simulation sports game or contest that meets the following conditions:
(1) The values of all prizes and awards offered to winning game participants are established and made known to the game participants in advance of the game or contest.
(2) All winning outcomes reflect the relative knowledge and skill of the game participants and are determined predominantly by accumulated statistical results of the performance of individuals, including athletes in the case of sporting events.
(3) No winning outcome is based on the score, point spread, or performance or performances of anysingle team or combination of teams, or solely on any single performance of an individual athlete or player in any single event.
(4) The statistical results of the performance of individuals under subdivision (2) are not based on college or high school sports.
(5) All participants must pay, with cash or a cash equivalent, an entry fee to participate".
Breaking down what exactly is or isn't legal in Indiana. Gambling Venues in Indiana
Where to gamble in the state of Indiana. The History of Gaming Laws in Indiana
A brief history of Indiana laws regarding gambling. The Furture of Gambling in Indiana
What does the future of gambling look like in Indiana?
More Gambling Laws in Indiana
The Indiana Code defines gambling as:
"risking money or other property for gain, contingent in whole or in part upon lot, chance, or the operation of a gambling device; but it does not include participating in:
(1) bona fide contests of skill, speed, strength, or endurance in which awards are made only to entrants or the owners of entries; or
(2) bona fide business transactions that are valid under the law of contracts."
Unlawful gambling can result in a class B misdemeanor. Here's what the Indiana code says about unlawful gambling:
"a) A person who knowingly or intentionally engages in gambling commits unlawful gambling.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (c), unlawful gambling is a Class B misdemeanor."
Casino Games: Legal
Indiana has a handful of casinos throughout the state. The first casinos that were authorized in Indiana were riverboat casinos. Land based casinos weren't legalized in Indiana until 2011.
The casinos in Indiana are allowed to offer a variety of casino games, including blackjack, poker, craps, roulette and slot machines.
Sports and Race Betting: Pari-Mutuel Betting Only
Pari-mutuel betting is allowed at licensed horse racing tracks. Indiana has two horse racing tracks in the state.
The Indiana Code defines pari-mutuel betting as the following:
"'Pari-mutuel wagering' means a system of wagering in which those persons who wager on horses that finish in specified positions share the total amount wagered, minus deductions permitted by law."
Here's what the Indiana Code says about pari-mutuel betting:
"A person holding a permit to conduct a horse racing meeting or a license to operate a satellite facility may provide a place in the racing meeting grounds or enclosure or the satellite facility at which the person may conduct and supervise the pari-mutuel system of wagering by patrons of legal age on the horse races conducted or simulcast by the person."
Both race tracks in Indiana hold permits to offer pari-mutuel betting, including the use of simulcasts.
Greyhound racing is illegal in Indiana.
The Indian Lottery is known as the Hoosier Lottery.
According to the Hoosier Lottery website:
"The Hoosier Lottery was created by IC4-30 as a body politic and corporate separate from state government, and functions as much as possible as an entrepreneurial business enterprise. The Hoosier Lottery abides and is governed by two different sets of laws, the Indiana Code and the Indiana Administrative Code."
Here's the estimated contribution according to Hoosier Lottery website:
"Since the Hoosier Lottery's inception in October 1989 through June 30, 2016:
Total Payments to Winners: $11.5 Billion
Total Payments to Retailers: $1.3 Billion
Total Transfers to the State of Indiana: $5.1 Billion
Total to Build Indiana Fund: $3.7 Billion
Total to Teachers' Retirement Fund: $797.6 Million
Total to local police and firefighters' pensions: $609.7 Million
Total to Help America Vote Act**: $1.8 Million
All financial figures based on Fiscal Year 2016.
**In Fiscal Year 2004, the Hoosier Lottery contributed $1.8 million to the Help America Vote Act."
The Hoosier Lottery offers multiple draw games, scratch offs and fast play games.
Bingo: Charitable Games Only
Charitable bingo and other games are allowed in Indiana. Only nonprofit organizations may get a license to host charitable games.
Here are the authorized charitable games according to the Indiana Code:
"A qualified organization may conduct the following activities in accordance with this article:
(1) A bingo event.
(2) A charity game night.
(3) A raffle event.
(4) A door prize event.
(5) A festival.
(6) The sale of pull tabs, punchboards, and tip boards.
In addition to the events identified in IC 4-32.2-2-2, the following events are allowed:
(1) A water race event.
(2) A guessing game event.
(3) A game of chance conducted as a fundraising activity of a qualified organization and approved by the commission."
Social Gambling: Legal With Restrictions
Indiana law enforcement has come down on illegal social games recently, breaking up common low stake poker games that are held in bars.
Wagering on games of chance is illegal in Indiana unless done at approved casinos. It's often argued that poker is a game of skill, not a game of chance, but that's not how Indiana views poker.
According to the Indiana Gaming Commission FAQ web site page:
"Are card games, such as poker, games of chance?
Yes. The illegal gambling statute specifically provides that "a card game or an electronic version of a card game is a game of chance and may not be considered a bona fide contest of skill." See IC 35-45-5-1(l). Thus, games like poker and euchre are considered gambling if played for money."
Here's what the Indiana Code says about hosting games:
"A person who knowingly or intentionally:
(1) engages in pool-selling;
(2) engages in bookmaking;
(4) conducts lotteries or policy or numbers games or sells chances therein;
(5) conducts any banking or percentage games played with cards, dice, or counters, or accepts any fixed share of the stakes therein; or
(6) accepts, or offers to accept, for profit, money, or other property risked in gambling;
commits professional gambling, a Class D felony. However, the offense is a Class C felony if the person has a prior unrelated conviction under this subsection."
Hosting a game at home could land you a class C felony charge.
Any game of chance or skill can be played as long as nothing is wagered.
Gambling Venues in Indiana
According to the Indiana Gaming Commission website, Indiana has 12 casinos:
1 - Ameristar Casino East Chicago
777 Ameristar Drive East Chicago, IN 46312
2 - Rising Star Casino
777 Rising Star Drive Rising Sun, IN 47040
3 - Hollywood Casino
777 Hollywood Blvd. Lawrenceburg, IN 47025
4 - Hoosier Park Racing
4500 Dan Patch Cir Anderson, IN 46013
5 - Tropicana Evansville
421 NW Riverside Dr. Evansville, IN 47708
6 - Horseshoe Casino
777 Casino Center Drive Hammond, IN 46320-1000
7 - Belterra Casino
777 Belterra Drive Florence, IN 47020-9402
8 - Indiana Grand Casino
4300 N. Michigan Road Shelbyville, IN 46176
9 - Blue Chip Casino
777 Blue Chip Drive Michigan City, IN 46360-2414
10 - Majestic Star Casino
1 Buffington Harbor Drive Gary, IN 46406-3000
11 - Horseshoe Casino & Hotel
11999 Casino Center Dr, S.E. Elizabeth, IN 47117
12 - French Lick Resort
8670 West State Road 56 French Lick, IN 47432
History of Gambling in Indiana
The constitution bans lotteries
60% of residents in Indiana vote to legalize casino gambling, but Republican leadership denies legalizing it in 1990.
To generate more income for the state, Indiana grants up to five riverboat casino licenses.
Five licenses are granted to allow remote horse race betting sites to open in Fort Wayne,, Merrilville, and Indianapolis
Indiana amends the statutes to include wording that covers internet gambling.
A bill to allow dry land casinos is passed.
The Indiana State Lottery (Hoosier Lottery) starts.
A proposal to license riverboat casinos passes the House, but a Senate committee rejects it.
The Hooser Park horse racing track opens and offers on-track pari-mutuel betting.
The Indiana Downs horse racing track opens.
Indiana allows 2,000 slot machines to be put into each racetrack.
The Future & Your Views
Indiana allows a variety of gambling activities including all casino games, a state lottery, bingo and more.
While a handful of states are interested in legalizing online gambling sites, Indiana isn't at this time. Indiana has strictly prohibited Internet gambling, so it doesn't look like legal, regulated Indiana gambling sites will be available soon.
If you're looking for a place to play from Indiana, we recommend several reputable places on our site - many of them are happy to serve customers from Indiana. Be cautious about the legal situations, though.