Casinos in Arkansas
Gambling laws for casinos in Arkansas are rather strict and the state is very swift and decisive when it comes to dealing with illegal gambling operators, but fortunately the officials don’t seem to be all that interested as far as punishing individual players is concerned.
The state offers a few commercial brick-and-mortar casinos, such as the Oaklawn Jockey Club or the Southland Greyhound Park, which means that it is possible to enjoy slots and popular table games in a land-based gambling establishment. Other than that, Arkansas allows charity gaming as well as horse/greyhound race betting and operates a state-owned lottery.
Arkansas Gambling Laws
Gambling is covered by Arkansas Code Section 5-66. The current regulations explicitly prohibit social gaming and home games – and while the state doesn’t have a clear-cut definition of gambling, it is clear that the act of placing a wager is illegal unless you’re playing at a regulated gambling house.
5-66-106. Gaming devices – Betting.
(a) It is unlawful for any person to bet any money or other valuable thing or any representative of any thing that is esteemed of value on any game prohibited by ß 5-66-104.
(b) Upon conviction, a person who violates this section is guilty of a violation and shall be fined in any sum not exceeding one hundred dollars ($100) nor less than fifty dollars ($50.00).
In 2009, Arkansas Code has been modified to include a provision that prohibits using electronic wagering machines unless both the machine and the player are physically present at one of the licensed Arkansas race tracks. Consequently, it is possible to argue that real online gambling is illegal within the borders of the state, but since no players have been prosecuted so far, many Arkansas residents still choose to play on offshore casino sites, such as Bovada or WinPalace.
The current regulations make it impossible for the registered Arkansas gambling businesses to offer online casino games, so Arkansas-based online casino enthusiasts are pretty much forced to play on offshore, US-facing casino sites. While all of those websites accept Arkansas players and offer exciting games and promotions, you should keep in mind that this doesn’t guarantee that you won’t be charged with illegal gambling if the authorities find out about your online casino activities.
Offshore Casino Sites That Accept Arkansas Players
Even though playing at offshore casinos is somewhat risky for Arkansas residents, there’s no denying the fact that those sites give you access to better jackpots and bonuses than their regulated, intrastate counterparts from Nevada or New Jersey. Most of the offshore casinos that accept Arkansas players run on Real Time Gaming software, allowing you to experience a wide range of classic table games, video poker variants and slots.
Playing at offshore sites usually involves funding your on-site account via a credit card payment. Visa and MasterCard are the most popular credit card brands, but American Express is also accepted by a number of popular casinos. Please note that your card has to be cleared for international transactions in order for the money to go through – and even then, it is still possible for your payment to be refused.
If you don’t have the time to try several credit cards, you might also deposit via Western Union or MoneyGram, but keep in mind that not every casino supports money order payments. Withdrawals on the other hand are almost always handled via a wire transfer or a check by courier, which guarantees 100% reliability.
Developing Legal Scenarios
Arkansas isn’t very likely to introduce any gambling-friendly regulations in the foreseeable future. The current lawmakers seem to be opposed to gambling and the Arkansas officials recently made the headlines by organizing raids on Internet cafes that offered sweepstakes, which were in violation of the current statutes.