Thursday Poker Blog! Legal Update

Welcome back to the Thursday Poker Blog!  Today I want to give a update on the status of online poker in light of the indictments from April 15th reported in my last post.  The “big three” sites of Full Tilt Poker, Pokerstars and Absolute Poker remain unavailable for play to U.S. players.  Though the U.S. government apparently reached an accord with the sites to allow players to recoup money in their accounts, no updates have been provided on how or when that will occur.

Meanwhile, smaller sites have taken the risk of keeping their doors open to U.S. players, including Carbon Poker.  I have experimented with the site so far, but have this to say to fellow players:  1) Depositing money has been a pure nightmare; 2) we have deposited only $50 and are playing in only small events, as I a) have no feedback on the ability to cash out; and b) have no reason to believe the government won’t come knocking on Carbon’s door at any moment.  My word of advice is to assume any money you deposit is lost the moment you deposit it.  If you want to put a few bucks in, log some hours of competitive poker, and hope that withdrawing money works out, then that’s fine.  That’s the limit of my optimism on this, however. 

On the legal front, while some members of Congress continue to try and mobilize federal legislation to legalize and regulate internet poker, there are no indications of any type of imminent progress.  The more optimistic turf is at the state level, where New Jersey and my home State of Florida appear to be on the verge of turning to internet gambling to help solve their state budgetary crises.  Now, again, I scoff at the labeling of poker as “gambling,” but if I need to suck it up and let the bigwigs call it gambling to make it part of a state law legalizing it, well then I won’t let my pride get in the way 😉

Of course, even if it is legalized, what then?  You have State and Federal laws butting heads.  It seems like the state online casinos will have to utilize local banks to avoid affecting interstate commerce, but I will let nerdier lawyers than I tend to those concerns!! 

See you tomorrow folks!

Explore posts in the same categories: Poker Tips and Tales

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