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Is Online Bingo Legal?

Knowing the Laws of Bingo

Once you've decided to take your Bingo game play online the next question to yourself should be is what I am doing illegal? In many instances the answer will be a resounding yes, but there are several subtleties in the law that most people don't realize that will keep them from being in any trouble.

What's Illegal about Bingo?

For the most part just the act of playing Bingo in and of itself is not inherently illegal. Laws vary according to the geographic location and jurisdiction of the player but for the most part Bingo is seen as merely the fun game that it is. What does change is when you decide to add money to the mix and begin gambling on the outcome of Bingo games. This is where it becomes a virtual legal minefield and one that you will have to study the local laws of your particular jurisdiction to successfully navigate.

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Stateside Be Aware

The act of betting, on any game, is illegal for many reasons across the globe. Most notably the United States allows gambling in certain jurisdictions within its borders but still does not allow online betting. Many times online betting sites disallow players from the United States for this reason. If you are a player from the United States and you find a betting site that will accept your wager be aware that the onus is not just necessarily on the operator of the site but is also on you. What this means is that if you knowingly gamble in a jurisdiction where it is illegal you are responsible and you can face prosecution.

Ignorance of the law is never a viable legal defense.

Legal Bingo Play

If you are fortunate to live somewhere that allows online betting then you can play Bingo for money as much as you want. If you don't you should probably stick to non-money games and just enjoy the pure enjoyment that the game was originally intended for.

Another way to bet and essentially gamble on Bingo legally is to play at fundraisers. Bingo Fundraisers are somewhat like gambling in where you pay a certain amount of money for the opportunity to play. Prizes range from the very small to the very large. Sometimes fundraising organizers also allow cash prizes to be won all in the name of charity. There is a grey area here in the law that allows such "gambling" so this is certainly an avenue that you might want to pursue if you absolutely need to put some money on the line. Unfortunately there are not that many Bingo fundraisers going on at any one time and you have to strike when you can. There also aren't too many online Bingo fundraisers either.

Risking It

With all that being said the actual chance of any individual Bingo player, particularly in the United States, of actually being prosecuted for playing is very slim. Understand that the risk does exist but many people play all the time and prosecutions are very few and far between. But if you do decide to test the waters and get caught don't say you weren't warned.