Legality of Fantasy Sports Betting

Fantasy sports games have been popular for some time, but are in the midst of an explosion right now. Nothing is more popular than the daily fantasy games being offered by Draft Kings or Bet America, in which players play for money, and in some cases it can be a significant amount of money.

The question many people have is naturally, "Is it legal?" The answer is yes, it is certainly legal, which is why you have seen ads popping up over the Internet or heard ads on radio stations.

When the Unlawful Internet Gambling and Enforcement Act of 2006 was passed, it specifically allowed for fantasy games, even those played for money.

The actual text of the bill states that it does not include "participation in any fantasy or simulation sports game or educational game or contest in which (if the game or contest involves a team or teams) no fantasy or simulation sports team is based on the current membership of an actual team that is a member of an amateur or professional sports organization (as those terms are defined in section 3701 of title 28) and that meets the following conditions:
All prizes and awards offered to winning participants are established and made known to the participants in advance of the game or contest and their value is not determined by the number of participants or the amount of any fees paid by those participants.
All winning outcomes reflect the relative knowledge and skill of the participants and are determined predominantly by accumulated statistical results of the performance of individuals (athletes in the case of sports events) in multiple real-world sporting or other events."

To make it short, fantasy sports are considered to be skill-based. Yes, you can argue that it takes just as much skill to correctly pick an over/under as it does to predict who rushes for the most yards, but this is the U.S. government we're talking about here. Logic doesn't always apply.

So if you had any reservations about participating in one of the daily fantasy games you can relax. It's completely legal in the eyes of the law.

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