New Jersey Gaming Regulator Advises Media to Avoid Advertising Unlicensed Sports Betting Websites

Posted on: November 29, 2019, 01:00h. 

Last updated on: November 28, 2019, 09:28h.

New Jersey’s chief gaming regulator is advising all news and media outlets covering sports betting to avoid referencing or accepting advertising from unlicensed networks.

gaming regulatory New Jersey sports betting
David Rebuck, the gaming regulator who oversees New Jersey’s casinos and sports betting, is paying close attention to offshore providers. (Image: NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement)

New Jersey led the charge against the federal government to repeal the ban on sports betting. The Supreme Court ruled in its favor in May 2018 and gave states the right to determine their own sports wagering laws. The Garden State then became one of the first to join Nevada in accepting legal bets on professional and collegiate sporting events.

The SCOTUS decision delivered a major blow to illicit offshore sportsbooks. But they continue to operate by accepting wagers from people in jurisdictions where they’re not licensed to do so.

Thirteen states have regulated sports betting operations: Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, Rhode Island, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Mississippi, Indiana, Iowa, Arkansas, New Mexico, and Oregon.

DGE Warning

David Rebuck, director of the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE), is asking relevant news media covering the gaming industry to take caution in dealing with such sports betting platforms.

Rebuck says the DGE “is charged with protecting New Jersey’s consumers from the dangers posed by these illicit sites, which, in addition to not being authorized to accept wagers from New Jersey-based customers, lack consumer protections, integrity protocols, and money laundering controls.”

It can sometimes be difficult for players at home to determine whether a site is licensed in the Garden State. In New Jersey, for instance, numerous websites are licensed through land-based partner Borgata. They include, PartyCasino, PalaBingoUSA, and ScoresCasino.

Rebuck advises that if an unauthorized sports betting site must be sourced – ex: no licensed sportsbook currently has odds on a particular event the news media is covering – to do so with a disclaimer informing those inside New Jersey that they are not legally permitted to access the platform.

The DGE adds that odds should first come from a licensed and regulated sportsbook before using an offshore book.

New Jersey Shakedown

New Jersey has quickly matched Nevada in terms of sports betting handle and win. The states have gone back and forth in recent months on being the top sports gambling state in America.

Mobile is critical, with Garden State oddsmakers taking 82.6 percent of all their bets this year via the internet. Legal internet bookmakers in New Jersey have facilitated more than $2.8 billion in online wagers January through October.

With online sportsbooks essential, the DGE wants to make sure unlicensed competition doesn’t cut into the success. After Rebuck and the DGE threatened legal action against offshore casinos and sportsbooks continuing to accept wagers from those inside New Jersey, leading platforms BetOnline and Bookmaker both abruptly withdrew their operations.

The companies refunded all pending wagers, and gave customers a month to withdrawal their accounts.