Oklahoma Legal Poker Sites

Oklahoma StateWith more than 110 tribal casinos, ranging from small affairs to some big and lavish complexes – there is plenty of poker action in Oklahoma. Despite the proliferation of live gambling options, home-games are not legal here – with no carve out from the general anti-gambling Statutes. Charity casino nights can include poker here, though bar poker leagues are not legal and have been the subject of recent police raids.

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Live Poker Games In Oklahoma

There are currently 17 live poker card rooms to choose from in this State, offering tournament and cash game action around the clock. These rooms are found on Native lands, and include big names like the Hard Rock Casino in Tulsa. Some bigger tours stop in Oklahoma, including the televised Heartland Poker tour.

With so many poker rooms to choose from, there is very little reason to cross State borders from OK. What you’ll find is that this happens in the other direction, with players from Arkansas and Texas often enjoying the games here.

Are Home Games Legal In Oklahoma?

There are no known recent busts of small stakes poker home games in Oklahoma. At the same time these are technically not legal, covered by the general broad based ban on any form of gambling not specifically carved out under the law.

Bar leagues would fall into the same category. With no buy-ins, many people argue that these games are legal. The law enforcement authorities here do not agree with this, and have sent undercover cops into the games before busts take place. Your charity casino night can include poker and can be held legally – though prior licensing is required.

Oklahoma Online Poker Games

Oklahoma is with the majority of States in having no mention of the internet or even computers in the gambling section of their Statute books (which pre-date these things). It is the opinion of the government here that the current laws are adequate to include internet gambling and poker games. No individual has been arrested here for playing poker online, whatever the official legal option might be.

Residents of Oklahoma are welcomed by the many offshore poker sites which still spread games for US players. These poker rooms run from jurisdictions in the Caribbean, where they can operate legally. The games are enjoyed by many thousands of Americans every week – though the legality and safety are down to the choice of the individual player.

As a general gambling-friendly State, there is no reason to think that OK would not join a regulated online poker market at some point in the future. In other States where native tribes control a lot of the gambling, negotiations will be required to share revenues and responsibilities before it will be possible to move forward with this.

What Do The Oklahoma Gambling Statutes Say?

While some States target their laws at the organizers and profiteers of gambling games, Oklahoma have laws which deliberately target individuals for simply playing in these games too. Here the ‘bet’ is the main focus of criminality in the Statute books. There are also provisions to outlaw a lot of gambling devices too, in case the ‘bet’ is not legally tight enough on its own.

These laws do leave the opportunity for poker fans to argue that this game should be exempted as a game of skill. Unfortunately it seems that this was already through of – with poker appearing on a separate list of games which are expressly illegal.

Here is the definition of a bet, this comes from Chapter 21, part 941 of the OK Statutes:

… a bargain in which the parties agree that, dependent upon chance, or in which one of the parties to the transaction has valid reason to believe that it is dependent upon chance, one stands to win or lose something of value…

Here is part of the definition of games of chance, which does include poker:

… either poker, roulette, craps or any banking or percentage, or any gambling game played with dice, cards or any device, for money, checks, credits, or any representatives of value…

Oklahoma Poker – Summing It Up

The historical resettlement of native tribes from the East has created a situation where this State has a huge number of tribal casinos. Many of these have poker rooms, meaning poker fans from Oklahoma can easily find live action around the clock. With bar leagues and home games not legal, only charity poker tournaments provide an alternate outlet.

Offshore poker sites welcome Oklahoma residents to their tables. It does not seem too likely that this State will rush to regulate online poker games either within their borders or in conjunction with other States. If legal online poker proves successful in many other States, there is no reason to think that OK would refuse to at least look at this subject at some point down the line.