Last updated: June 1, 2020
Status:A bill was introduced in February 2020 that would legalize sports betting.
ETA: If the bill is passed, sports betting could become a reality later in 2020.
Historically, Georgia has had a conservative reputation when it comes to gambling. Charitable gaming is permitted and there is a state lottery, but there are no casinos or any legal facilities for sports or horse race betting. There have been moves aimed at bringing casinos to the region but there is a long way to go before this becomes a reality.
The recent attempts to provide a framework for sports betting could actually help get casinos off the ground. House Resolution 380 was introduced in February and if passed would allow operators to apply for sports betting licenses in that state. However, any bill to amend the constitution would need to be put to a public vote.
As things stand, there is no mention of online or mobile betting in the wording. The resolution is more concerned with laying the groundwork for a future sports betting bill and setting out how tax revenues would be diverted. The boost to education mentioned in the paper could help swing the public vote. As things stand, the amendment only applies to sports betting, but if it is passed, it could pave the way for further gambling opportunities in the state.
With neighbouring states making positive moves towards legal sports betting, there is a feeling that Georgia must try to get in on the action or risk losing revenue to nearby states.
Georgia could not be described as a gambling-friendly state. Aside from the state lottery and limited charitable gaming for residents, there are no gambling activities permitted in the state. If you are in Georgia and want to play a casino game, your only option is to skip across the border or hop onto a cruise liner and sail into international waters.
Lottery tickets were banned in Georgia in 1878 after a trend for lotteries in neighboring Southern states crept across the border. It wasn’t until 1993 that a state lottery was established. And while the rest of the USA relaxed betting rules to allow wagering on horse and greyhound races, Georgia was one a few that bucked the trend by maintaining their ban.
There was a breakthrough of a kind in the late 1970s when games such as bingo and raffles were permitted for charitable purposes - albeit with strict guidelines. An attempt to navigate a loophole in the law and bring video poker machines to the state in 2002 was soon thwarted by the government who outlawed the machines.
At present, no. A bill to legalize sports betting was filed in February 2020. This bill will not require a constitutional amendment.
With no laws in place, there is no organisation in control of sports wagering in the state.
Sports betting in Georgia is currently illegal but the minimum age limit for lotteries and bingo is 18.
Currently, there are no legal locations to bet on sports in Georgia.
No sports betting licenses have ever been issued in Georgia.
There are no operators currently offering legal sports betting in Georgia.
Mobile sports betting is currently illegal in Georgia.
According to estimates, casino gaming and sports wagering could generate up to $12 million in state revenue per year.
No tax rate or license fees have been set for sports betting in the state.
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