Nevada Legal Poker Sites

Nevada StateMany people are surprised how strict the gambling laws are in the State of Nevada. While people see the glitz and excesses of the Las Vegas Strip, the tightly controlled legal framework which allows poker and other gambling to take place is hidden behind the scenes. Las Vegas has more poker action than any player will need, and there are several more cities in Nevada with casinos too. This State are also one of the pioneers of regulated online poker – and in early 2014 they signed a deal with Delaware to share poker players across each state’s regulated rooms.

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This page gives you an overview of all the different ways you can enjoy poker in the State of Nevada. First of all casino poker rooms are covered, from the giants at the mega casinos through to the smaller regional poker rooms. After that social poker is the topic, with home games, bar leagues and charity events all discussed. Online poker is a big area in Nevada at the moment – and is covered next in this article. Towards the end of this page you’ll find some commentary on the wording from the Nevada Statutes which relate to poker, followed by a summing up at the end of the page.

Live Poker Games In Nevada

You are literally spoiled for choice in this State, with huge names like the Rio, Bellagio and Caesars Palace all competing for your custom. Besides the big names there are many smaller and mid-sized poker card rooms both on and off of the strip. Outside of Las Vegas you can play in many regional casinos too, including the truck-stop turned casino destination of Wendover – which caters almost exclusively to players making the journey from Salt Lake City in Utah.

In addition to cash game action up to very high levels, there are tournaments running every day throughout this State. These range from smaller buy-in games right through to the bigger tournaments in the world including the World Series of Poker and World Poker Tour.

Are Home Games Legal In Nevada?

Home poker games are legal in Nevada. The usual rule that nobody can profit from hosting these games does apply. This legislation is aimed at smaller stakes social games, with high stakes action much more likely to attract the attention of the authorities.

Bar poker leagues flourish for players who prefer the social side of poker without entry fees. You can also find charity poker nights running in this State, these games need to be licensed individually by the charitable gaming control board.

Online Poker Games In Nevada

Nevada is currently one of only 3 States who have legal online poker games within their State borders. The first sites went live in 2013 and are set up are partnerships between the big global poker brands and Nevada casino interests. With only 1.5 million residents, this State finds it difficult to raise the critical mass of players required for a flourishing online poker economy. This may be the driver behind signing a liquidity sharing deal with Delaware in early 2014.

Some offshore poker sites still offer games to Nevada residents, while others pulled out of offering games here after the regulated rooms went live.

I would anticipate that further liquidity sharing agreements are possible as more states regulate online poker in the future.

What Do The Nevada Gambling Statutes Say?

You’ll find a lot of detail in the law books concerning poker and gambling in Nevada, as well as some strict penalties for stepping out of line when it comes to the law. The central pillar of the NV law is a list of illegal gambling games. This is both specific in naming a lot of games (some of which sound pretty crazy all these years later) and general in saying that anything with cards or dice gets included. It is the reference to using cards which captures poker – this would make the skill game argument difficult to make stick should it ever get to court.

Here is the main definition of gambling game from the Statute books, this comes from chapter 463, part 01-52.

…any game played with cards, dice, equipment or any mechanical, electromechanical or electronic device or machine for money, property, checks, credit or any representative of value… (goes on to list a lot of games from here).

Nevada Poker – Summing It Up

There are more opportunities to enjoy legal poker games in Nevada than just about anywhere in the US, including the biggest and best poker rooms and world-class tournament events. Away from the Strip bar leagues are popular and home-games can be held with no legal issues as long as nobody is profiting by running the game.

It is online poker which makes Nevada stand out from the crowd, with fully legal regulated sites already operating within the State borders and in conjunction with Delaware. If further liquidity sharing deals are made, there is every reason to believe that Nevada would be at the center of a future US boom in internet poker games.