States With Daily Fantasy Sports
The states with daily fantasy sports depend largely on the daily fantasy sports companies that are in the market. The current legal climate for DFS is quite a mixed bag, with some states attempting to regulate contests, other states remaining neutral, and a few that want to veto the contests completely. Daily fantasy sports allow fans to create their own teams and compete for cash prizes. Unlike sports betting, DFS are legal in the United States and do not fall any under federal restrictions. It is on the state-level that there is some confusion, but we can help to clear that up.
State-by-state, daily fantasy sports offerings will differ even though the contests are not considered sports betting. Each site has taken their own unique stance in deciding the states that they will accept players from. To learn more about legal daily fantasy sports states and where you can or cannot play, continue reading our useful DFS eligibility resource.
Where Can I Play DFS Legally?
While states have the ultimate power to decide where you can play DFS legally, it is important to remember that in the eyes of the federal law online fantasy betting is 100% legal! The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA) even includes a clause specifically detailing the legality of fantasy sports. As long as the amount of the prize pool is declared beforehand and bets are not based solely on the performance of one player or the outcome of a sporting event, fantasy sports are excluded fr om the UIGEA.
Not all states have their own laws on the books regarding DFS, and their governments may be slow to pass new legislation, but there are already several states with daily fantasy sports laws for legal play. In recent years, there have been increasing efforts to allow legal daily fantasy sports contests in all 50 states. While we are not there yet, an estimated 40% of states permit their residents to play paid-entry daily fantasy contests.
Current Daily Fantasy States
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
What States Have Banned DFS?
There are a few states that have banned DFS or have issued an official opinion that the contests are considered illegal. There are various reasons why certain states have banned DFS, whether it is because there are provisions in the law, conflicts with tribal gaming compacts, or conflicts with the state’s current fantasy sports offerings. You will find that major operators do not allow residents of these states to enter paid contests or even create accounts. Historically banned daily fantasy sports states are:
Do DFS Sites Accept Players From Every State?
DFS do not accept players from every state, though that is not necessarily a testament to legality. While most states allow legal daily fantasy sports contests, not all states have started to regulate the contests and some do not wish to. That is why DFS sites do not allow players from all states to play, because there may be prior laws or bills in the works that would not support DFS within the state. Two of the biggest names in daily fantasy sports are DraftKings and FanDuel, with Yahoo, StarsDraft, and FantasySports also being popular in the market. You can view a complete list of states that each site does not accept by browsing the sections below.
States That DraftKings Restricts
Even though there are several states that DraftKings restricts, the site remains one of the industry leaders in legal daily fantasy sports. There has long been controversy with certain state legislators regarding the legality of DFS. There are some governments that are working toward regulating the contests but others are strongly opposed. DraftKings has been a consistent force in the US market, but it is still better to avoid unnecessary battles. States restricted by DraftKings at this time include:
States That FanDuel Restricts
The states that FanDuel restricts are those that have huge gray area when it comes to the legality of DFS at the state level. It was one of the only sites that did not immediately back out of the US market when Nevada regulators first asserted that DFS operators would need gambling licenses. Instead, the FanDuel restricted states are limited to jurisdictions where the existing gambling laws are not conducive to daily fantasy sports. The list of restricted FanDuel states can be found below:
States That StarsDraft Restricts
Unlike the majority of legal daily fantasy sports sites, the list of states that StarsDraft restricts is quite extensive. The decision to stop offering DFS contests to the majority of US players came in 2015 after lawmakers began to focus their efforts on state regulation of daily fantasy sports.
StarsDraft is a subsidiary of Amaya, which had taken ownership of the controversial PokerStars brand only a year prior to the DFS boom. The company decided it was too risky to get involved in any potential controversy, and opted to limit play to residents in states with daily fantasy sports laws that were clear.
States That Yahoo Restricts
After years of offering season-long fantasy products, Yahoo decided to add daily fantasy sports to their portfolio with the introduction of Yahoo Daily Fantasy. As with any other site, the states that Yahoo restricts fluctuates with the current legal climate. Some of these are still states with daily fantasy sports, but Yahoo has decided not to offer any contests. If you are a legal resident of any of the following states, you will be ineligible to play:
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