Legal sports betting in Georgia has been a hot topic for a while now. With big sports teams such as Atlanta United, Hawks, Dawgs and Falcons playing in the state and outside, there is a huge opportunity for sports betting. Yet, there has been no laws allowing sports betting in the state. However, interested bettors have been wagering on sports by joining bookmakers outside Georgia’s jurisdiction.
It’s also important to note the state lacks law targeting bettors wagering on overseas sportsbooks. The only form of legal betting in Georgia is the lottery, of which the revenue has been used to fund the state’s education system. Other than that, domestic gambling, including horse racing and casinos, is also not legal. Daily Fantasy Sports betting is allowed but not because there is legislation about it. Instead, DFS is considered as a game of skill and not gambling, which is referred to as a process of luck.
Notably, things are about to change following the ongoing procedure to legalize sports betting in Georgia. Following the legalization of sports betting in Tennessee, Georgia is likely to do the same. The state is heavily discussing the issue with the bill similar to the one Tennessee already has before Senate.
If the bill SB403 passes in 2021, it will legalize online sports betting, which will allow various sportsbook operators to enter the state and offer services from within. The law will also allow the creation of an independent government regulatory body to deal with sports gambling in the state.
The good news is, all four Georgia sports professional teams, including Hawks, Dawgs, Falcon and Atlanta United, are on board with the bill. After the bill is passed by two-thirds of the Senate and signed by the governor, various sportsbooks will move in and start providing sports betting services.
Popular Betting Brands in Georgia
The legalization of SB 403 in 2021 will see several sportsbook brands enter the Georgia betting market. But, Georgians still bet on various international betting brands. These include:
Bovada is generally a popular sportsbook in the USA. That’s why it’s one of the go-to platforms for Georgians who want to bet on locally featured games and international sports. With a 50 percent welcome bonus, same day bitcoin payout plus multiple payment methods and extensive coverage of bet markets, Bovada is the real deal.
MyBookie is another online sportsbook, accessible from Georgia. With the bookie, you get access to all sports betting and even real money casino games. New players get a 100 percent welcome bonus, access to 24/7 customer service, live betting, among other incredible features. However, bonuses have a high rollover.
BetOnline is another famous brand among Georgian punters. The bookie covers sports played in the United States and around the globe. New bettors get a 50 percent welcome bonus and other promotions that are continually changing.
Some of the operators likely to join Georgia’s land-based and online betting market include:
Considering fantasy sports betting is allowed in GA, FanDuel comes in handy in providing FS betting markets. In fact, the fantasy sports trade association has put FanDuel as the best for daily and weekly fantasy sports leagues. Moreover, once the gambling bill is a law, FanDuel will be among the first to enter the Georgia betting market.
DraftKings is another leading fantasy sports betting service provider to Georgia residents. The brand is based in Boston, Massachusetts but is accessible to punters residing in Georgia. DraftKings is interested in entering the Georgia betting market once the bill becomes law.
BetMGM falls shortly under FanDuel and DraftKings in regards to market share in the USA. The brand already has its operations running in Nevada, New Jersey and other three states. This means the brand is ready to expand its services to Georgia and be a great fit for Atlanta. Moreover, considering the brand has incredible mobile betting services, their services in Georgia can quickly catch up.
William Hill was born in the UK and has expanded its services to the U.S. The brand is known for its superior provision of sports betting markets, both international and local events. Although the bookie doesn’t provide sports betting to Georgians, it has expressed interest in entering the market. The bookie, however, continues to cover even bet markets from Georgia. For example, if Atlanta Hawks is playing another team from a different state, the bookie covers the market.
Sports Betting in the USA
The elimination of PASPA by the Supreme Court on May 14, 2018, marks the greatest day in the USA’s history of sports betting. Six months after the relegation, seven states had rolled out their sports betting industry and established credible bet markets. These states include New Mexico, West Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, Mississippi, Rhode Island and Pennsylvania.
The first half of 2019 came with another wave of multiple sports legislation across various states. Over two dozen states started with passing bills into law, but only seven states went through to the legalization of sports betting. Today, 20 states allow sports betting and several others are just steps away from legalizing sports betting.
You will find some states allow online and in-person sports betting, some with only retail betting and others with no form of betting. Various states go ahead and put restrictions, limiting their residents from betting on unlawful platforms. However, things are steadily changing, whereby various jurisdictions are relieving stringent measures against illegal betting. Some states have even legalized sports betting after realizing what their neighboring friends are collecting in revenue.
Some jurisdictions have not been moved. For example, Utah will probably be the last federation to think or allow any form of online betting. The state has a strong cultural heritage they feel will be contaminated once wagering is permitted. The legislators have thus never attempted to initiate a bill that would allow wagering. However, there was an attempt to introduce horse racing wagers, but it didn’t go through.
Yet, various punters have always had a way to bet whether it is allowed or not. For example, punters join international sportsbooks to place bets on multiple sports disciplines. Some jurisdictions against sports betting also require various banks to stop transactions from moving to a gambling site. Thus, it is challenging to send or receive money because banks flag those transactions. However, punters still find a way by using other forms such as bitcoin and check as a payment form.
Overall, betting in the USA is possible and is rapidly improving as states are taking steps towards making it better for punters. Although it might take even a decade for some federations, we hope they will all permit sports betting, mainly because it will create another revenue source.
GA Mobile Betting
There is a bill to legalize mobile sports betting in the Senate awaiting approval in early 2021. The state of Georgia is one of the most conservative in the country. It refuses to legalize even horse racing, which is legal in most other countries. Residents can’t play casino games, sports betting or any form of gambling as it is illegal. Yet, punters have always found a way around the laws.
Bet types available GA betting sites
Below, find the popular bet markets among Georgian punters, cashout options available and more.
- Straight bets: These bets are where you predict which team will win outright. For example, if the Atlanta Hawks face another team in a different state, you can predict Atlanta to win. You don’t have to think about the points a team has to win for your wager to qualify.
- Moneyline: this bet is standard in baseball and hockey matches. Here, Georgians bet on which team to win without a point spread. Usually, there is a minimum a player places to bet on favorite, which is also a different amount when betting on an underdog team. For example, you can find a bookie accepting a minimum of $10 for a bet on favorite team and $5 for an underdog group.
- Teaser Bets: teaser bet is another popular bet among Georgians. Here, players combine odds for two different matches and bet on them under one ticket. Usually, both wagered teams have to win to get a reward.
GA sportsbook payment options
Mobile betting also involves depositing funds to a sportsbook account and withdrawing winnings. To that end, punters use various payment options. Payment options at GA sportsbooks include:
- Cryptocurrencies: bitcoin, litecoin, lithium are the three standard cryptocurrency payment methods Georgians can use. These payment modes don’t restrict gambling transactions, which makes them the favourite for any U.S resident.
- Credit and debit cards: some bookmakers accept credit and debit cards as a form of deposit methods. Players have to look for an alternative to withdraw their winnings. Some banks reverse the transaction after realizing it’s gambling-related.
- E-wallet: e-wallet methods include PayPal, Neteller, Skrill, and many others. These methods allow you to transfer funds from your bank account to the e-wallet. Usually, you must have an e-wallet account before you transact. Most bookies receive money via e-wallets and pay winning through the same channel.
Online Betting Laws in Georgia
No law in Georgia specifies anything regarding online sports betting. Instead, the state’s legislators leave the issue untouched, mainly because federal law didn’t give them the power to address the issue.
Before the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (federal law) was overruled by the U.S. Supreme Court, it prevented Georgia from taking sports betting issues on their hands. Since PASPA was overturned in May 2018, Georgia can now decide how to regulate in-state sportsbooks and online betting.
Yet, the Georgia state-based gambling laws don’t target bettors residing in the state. Instead, the existing laws discourage sportsbooks from accepting funds from Georgia residents. For example, Nevada sportsbook doesn’t accept wagers phoned or sent by Georgia residents over the internet. According to the Wire Act, which is another federal law, the law prevents wagering over any line of communication from one state/ Georgia to another state/ sportsbook in another jurisdiction.
The federal law has no authority over a sportsbook located in another jurisdiction and thus can’t take action against it. This also means Georgia’s residents can transfer funds to an overseas sportsbook and place a bet without violating U.S. laws.
Ideally, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) prevents financial institutions from knowingly processing money associated with internet gambling. But, just like the overturned PASPA, these laws applied and apply to sportsbooks and not bettors.
GA also lacks control over online sports betting, especially because the online sportsbooks are outside Georgia jurisdiction. So long as a Georgian bettor is using an online sportsbook located overseas, he/she is not violating any Georgia sports betting laws.
Generally, Georgia follows the federal laws to ban sports betting within the state. This means a person participating in illegal gambling can face misdemeanor charges while an operator of an unlawful sports betting facility could be charged with a felony.
Professional Sports Team in Georgia
When it comes to legal sports betting in Georgia, flexibility will come with it. Not only will punters bet on international markets but also local events. Players will have the option to bet on big and small actions on various events involving local professional teams. These professional teams in Georgia include:
Atlanta Braves (MLB)
Atlanta Braves is the Major League Baseball (MLB) team in the state. The group moved to the state in 1966 and won its first modern World Series in 1996. Atlanta Braves have had several seasons over the years, and their performance has been something locals look forward to. In addition to braves, other teams serve as an entry into professional games. These include Gwinnett Braves, Savannah, Rome Braves and Sand Gnats.
Atlanta Falcons (NFL)
Atlanta Falcons was created in 1966 and has been the primary National Football League team in the state. Although the group is yet to win a Super Bowl, they have several division and conference championships. There is also Georgia Force which is an affiliate and plays for American Indoor Football Association and the Arena Football League. Atlanta Xplosion is also another major team and a member of the Women’s Professional Football League.
Atlanta Hawks (NBA)
Atlanta Hawks, an American Basketball Association team, has been representing Georgia since 1968. The group is one of the four that have ever qualified to play in 10 consecutive seasons of NBA playoffs in the 21st century. Punters look forward to this team playing, especially when the group faces its all-time rivals, Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic.