Indiana online casino gambling could be coming in 2021, although 2022 seems like a safer bet. There was a bill introduced in January 2021 that would legalize this growing industry, and there does seem to be plenty of support behind it.
The last time Indiana made a change in gambling laws was in 2019 as the state moved to legalize and launch both retail and online Indiana sports betting. That industry has been highly successful, giving lawmakers a chance to think even bigger in regards to IN online casino gambling.
There are currently 15 casinos in operation in Indiana, which is a pretty solid number for the size of the state. These casino properties have benefited tremendously from in-person sports wagering and would likely do the same if online casino gambling was an option.
Indiana Online Casino Rules
The current legal gambling age in Indiana is 21 years of age, and that rule would be in place for online casino gambling as well. Casino gambling has been in business for a few decades, and the rules have changed and evolved over time.
Poker is currently available at all of the commercial casinos in the state, and that would likely be an online option as well. Not all states that allow online casino gambling also allow online poker, but IN online casino gambling would probably legalize both.
Current IN casino rules also allow casinos to offer a wide range of table games, and those same options could be made available online as well. These rules would likely be decided by the Indiana Gaming Commission.
The Horseshoe Hammond Casino is currently the biggest casino in the state, with the Hollywood Casino in Lawrenceburg being the next largest. If IN online casino gambling were to be offered, expect these two properties to dominate the online market as well.
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Indiana Casino Regulations
A number of states are currently exploring the online casino industry, but few have taken the necessary steps to get something done. That isn’t the case in Indiana, as SB417 was introduced in January.
There has not been a ton of movement on SB417 since it was introduced, but that doesn’t mean that something can’t happen in a hurry. If this bill does eventually stall out, the language that was included in the legislation provides a solid outline of what IN online casino gambling might look like.
According to SB417, only land-based casinos, racetracks, or riverboat casinos would be eligible to apply for a license. Tribal casinos would also be authorized to offer online casino gambling based on the gaming compacts signed with the state.
The cost of an initial IN online casino gambling license would be $500,000, and then there would be a $50,000 renewal fee in place as well. This is a fair price, and Indiana would attract some of the top operators based on this language.
This bill also allows each casino to partner with three online-only operators, which could create a large number of options in the Hoosier State. The Indiana Gaming Commission would regulate and oversee the new industry if it were to launch.
There has been some opposition to this bill from local business leaders as they want in on the action as well. These businesses propose legalizing video gaming terminals which could be set up at restaurants and bars throughout the state.
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Indiana is a state that appears on track to legalize and launch online casino gambling, and there is some belief that it could happen as early as 2021. Lawmakers are starting to run out of time to get something done, but this is a topic that could be re-visited in 2022.
While other states have simply seen basic online casino gambling bills introduced, the bill in Indiana has some very specific language that could help get the industry up and running. This will still require some support from additional lawmakers, but Indiana has a history of adding new forms of gambling.
The Hoosier State already has a strong and thriving casino industry, and Indiana online casinos could do very well. There is pressure coming from the state of Michigan now as well, and this could help Indiana lawmakers get a bill passed.
Expect Indiana to be one of the next few states to launch online casino gambling.