Gambling And Sports Betting In Florida

From Friday, October 15, 2021, Floridians were allowed to indulge in legal sports wagering—however, not entirely. There still exist pending lawsuits involving the Seminole Tribe that controls the way how sports betting is carried out in the state. And as of now, online betting is delayed in Florida. Nevertheless, Floridians can still play in-person in tribal-owned casinos.

When Will Florida Sports Betting Apps Launch?

The agreement between Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the Seminole Tribe was announced right before the end of the 2021 legislative session, stating the launch of mobile betting in the state by the end of the year.  However, sports betting in Florida is not a done deal.

On August 6, 2021, deemed approval letter was issued by the US Department of the Interior, which resulted in the launch of mobile betting on October 15, 2021. But as stated earlier, the pending lawsuit delayed the launch date again.

Magic City Casino and Bonita Springs Poker Room, two pari-mutuel companies, filed a lawsuit in the US District Court on August 17, in the District Columbia, arguing that the Secretary of Interior Deb Haaland exceeded her authority when she approved the compact. The case was filed in DC as it is home to the Department of Interior.

But this wasn’t the first case filed by Magic City. The first was against DeSantis and the state of Florida back in the summer. Another issue is that the voters might potentially have a say in 2022. All these efforts are underway at the moment and are supported by some larger sportsbooks in order to bring forth a ballot initiative permitting sports betting in the state, not on tribal lands.

In the upcoming session, we will take about everything you need to know about sports betting and gambling in Florida to prepare you when the industry finally launches.

Florida Sports Betting Revenue

Maybe the most vital aspect that might push Florida legislators and the public towards sports betting legalization would be revenue. As stated earlier, the Seminole Tribe ceased paying the state government, meaning a loss of $350 million in annual revenue in 2019 when they disputed that allowing racinos to offer different card games would break the 2010 Compact.  This even seriously affected the state government’s budget, along with COVID-19.

That being said, the Florida government had to face a $3 billion loss between 2020 and 2021. This seriously impacted the state’s operational abilities alongside the comfort of its people.

Sports betting is an activity that could potentially pave the way to additional revenue that the government won’t be able to pass up. But how much revenue can the Floridian government expect? Unfortunately, it is pretty hard to predict a specific figure.

However, if we look at the betting industries in other states, perhaps we could get some insight into the revenue the Florida state government can expect to tap into. For instance, legal sports betting and gambling in New Jersey created nearly $50 million in November 2020. What’s surprising is that it wasn’t the state’s most profitable month. In October, it bagged almost $59 million.

By reaching a sports betting licensing agreement of some kind will help the Floridian state government enjoy the revenue from the Seminole Tribe again. If the sports betting industry is established in Florida, the government will see hundreds of millions or something close to $1 billion in annual revenue per year.

Legal Sportsbooks in Florida

While there exist chances of more mobile sports betting apps popping up during the 2021-2022 NFL season, it is imperative that punters analyze the risk of wagering on illegal or offshore betting sites instead of waiting for Florida sportsbooks to launch.


There a various reasons why offshore or illegal betting sites are considered unsafe. Of all the reasons, the terrible digital security they feature makes them the least safe, which can put both your personal information and your winnings at risk. Furthermore, they also offer poor betting experiences as their betting lines and odds aren’t as player-friendly as legal or licensed sportsbooks.

To put it short, legal and fully licensed betting sites are far safer and more secure than the most attractive illegal sportsbooks. Though you have to pay taxes on your winnings, it is a small price for the peace of mind you will get knowing your personal information, deposits, and winnings are safe from hackers or sketchy organizations.

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