North Carolina Online Sports Betting

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North Carolina is one of the least gambling-friendly states in terms of its laws and pending legislation. What little gambling there is in the Tar Heel State takes place in only two Tribal casinos, both of which are in the western part of the state far away from the major population centers. Those two Tribal casinos do offer physical sports betting locations, but the Tar Heel State is yet to find for the legalization of something akin to NJ online sports betting.

All that remains outside of the reservation is some charity gaming, and a few low-stakes bingo games. Even a state lottery wasn’t introduced for North Carolinians until as recently as 2006. On the upside, Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) players will be excited to learn that DFS is offered to all residents and visitors to North Carolina.

Legality of Sports Betting VS Gambling

North Carolina offers its visitors and residents a single Tribal Casino industry, DFS competitions, live poker and charitable gambling.

Sports & Gambling TypeLegal Land-BasedLegal Online
Sports BettingYesNo
CasinosYesNo
Fantasy Sports (DFS)N/AYes
eSportsNoNo
PokerYesNo
Horse RacingNoNo
LotteryYesNo
Charitable GamblingYesNo

North Carolina Sports Betting Tax Rates

North Carolina applies a 7% state tax on gambling winnings.

Large gambling wins over $600 in the state of North Carolina may possibly attract an additional Federal Tax.

Contact your tax attorney to assess your potential Federal tax liability if you have a big win in North Carolina.

Sports betting Age VS Gambling Age in North Carolina

No Age Limit applies to North Carolina’s charitable gaming, whilst at the upper end of the spectrum, the state’s lone casino applies a 21-years-of-age limit. All other forms of legal gaming apply an age limit of 18.

Gambling Type Age
Sports Betting21
DFS18
Casinos21
Horse Racing18
Lottery18
Charitable GamblingNo Age Limit

Betting on Sports in North Carolina

North Carolina officially legalized sports betting in July 2019 after Governor Roy Cooper signed Senate Bill 154 into law in the Tar Heel State.

SB 154 is quite limited in its application as it allows for limited sports and horse racing betting only, and only permitted at two tribal casinos. Online sports betting was not included in the sports wagering bill, however, so this is just a baby step forward for sports wagering in North Carolina. Remember, North Carolina has traditionally been in opposition to gambling expansions of any type, which means they are hopes for online sports wagering in the future.

In May 2021, Senators Jim Perry and Paul Lowe opened online sports betting legalization bill SB 688 seeking to overcome North Carolina’s hardline approach to wagering on sports online. There was also an effort in 2022 to legalize online gambling in the state, but it failed to receive a vote in the state House after passing the Senate.

North Carolina Online Sports Betting Laws

Many states in the nation have authorized legal gambling online and North Carolina is certainly not a member of the club. North Carolina does not authorize or regulate on online sports betting laws at all.

As in many-other-states, North Carolina’s gambling laws take the approach of prohibiting and defining as illegal everything except for what is specifically authorized as legal. § 14-292 of the North Carolinian State Statutes explains the state’s position in crystal-clear wording;

‘Except as provided in Chapter 18C of the General Statutes or in Part 2 of this Article, any person organization that operates any game of chance or any person who plays at or bets on any game of chance at which any money, property or other thing of value is bet, whether the same be in stake or not, shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. This section shall not apply to a person who plays at or bets on any lottery game being lawfully conducted in any state.’

Meanwhile, online players can play real money DFS competitions unhindered in the Tar Heel State.

Online Fantasy Sports in North Carolina

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) competitions have been ruled by federal lawmakers in the United States not to be considered a form of gambling. Federal courts have determined DFS are skills-based games, not games of chance. As a result, under U.S. federal law, states have been encouraged to declare their own individual positions on the legality of DFS competitions.

Lawmakers in North Carolina had long been non-committal on applying DFS legalization laws in the state, until 2017. At that time, Republican lawmakers introduced Bill HB 279 with a series of regulations attached to create a legal framework of DFS competition administration. The bill was ultimately defeated, however, and there has not been a new piece of legislation that has come close to receiving a vote.

Meanwhile, all major DFS sites accept customers from North Carolina and players resident in or visiting North Carolina can sign-up and play DFS competitions for real money without form of legal impediment

Esports Online Betting Laws

With the exception of ‘legal-to-play’ DFS in North Carolina, online sports betting is generally unavailable, a position that still applies to eSports betting also for the time being. If-and-when sports betting becomes legal in the state of North Carolina, eSports betting will potentially become a popular new way for the state’s residents to win a few dollars, and the state treasury to earn some much-needed additional tax revenue.

What are eSports?

“What are eSports?” you ask.

‘eSports’ is video game play at the highest professional levels. Usually, played in team format (rather than individually), eSports is arguably the fastest growing betting phenomenon in the world today. Software game development companies of all the major electronic multi-player games (Starcraft II, Dota 2, Fortnite, Overwatch, and many others) have all launched their own pro leagues, and eSports competitions have been transformed into global betting events with the advent of live streaming technology. Developed sports betting markets around the world offer a range of betting markets across all major eSports tournaments.

Watch for our updates on the legalization of sports betting in North Carolina, to take part in legal eSports betting opportunities in the state.

Horse Racing in North Carolina

Horse racing has always been outlawed in North Carolina and greyhound racing had a brief dalliance as a legal gambling activity from 1939-1954.

North Carolina has two racetracks where greyhounds once raced, however, the North Carolina Supreme Court closed their doors permanently amid allegations that special privileges were given to a private company during the legal years.

As such, North Carolina’s state racing industry has been comatose ever since. There are no expectations to see North Carolina attempting to revive horse and greyhound betting in the near future.

Trackside Betting

There are no legal horse or greyhound racing tracks in North Carolina.

Off Track Betting (OTB) in North Carolina

OTB betting is not offered in North Carolina.

Online Horse Racing in North Carolina

Online Horse Racing Betting is not offered in North Carolina. Please see above section ‘North Carolina Online Sports Betting Laws’ for further details.

For information on the state’s online casino, poker and racing laws visit our NC Gambling page