Online casino legality is continually changing. The reason is that this is a pretty controversial topic, where on the one hand, stand those who want the freedom to make up their mind on whether or not to wager. And on the other hand, stand those who say that this type of entertainment can be addictive, and people can experience significant losses of money. Because both sides have a good point, the legality issue changes depending on the leaders of countries, that are also replaced often. Another aspect that attracts a lot of attention to the online casino industry is that it makes a lot of money. While back in the '90s, the yearly revenue was around $200 million. Today we are talking in the billions. For us players, what matters most is what could, potentially, cause us trouble with the law. So here is some explanation on what is allowed, and what is not. We will start by saying that there are many aspects to playing online. Some legal, some not, and some are somewhere in between.
The federal laws have no law against playing online. You can place wagers online - its legal. What isn't allowed - is placing wagers on a site based in the U.S. Having said that, a player will never be prosecuted for playing in an online casino - even one that is U.S. based. The reason is that no one can monitor this activity. Only one player has ever been recorded for being trouble for playing in an online casino, and he received a $500 fine for a $100,000 win. To sum this section up, if you want to play online and be 100% sure no one can take any actions against you - make sure it is located outside the U.S. Doesn't matter where. It can be Canada, Latin America etc.
As mentioned, gambling on a website located in the U.S is not legal. If you have any intentions to operate a casino site and wish to attract American players, work from outside the U.S. You can accept casino or poker wagers, and not sports betting wagers. Another illegal aspect is advertising online gambling. If you are a publisher, watch out. In 2007 Google, Microsoft and Yahoo have faced prosecution and were fined for accepting gambling ads. If you are a small publisher, most likely no one will prosecute you. But still, why take the risk. Another problematic business aspect in this industry is transferring casino-related funds. If you accept players from the U.S, it will be hard to find the company that will allow the transfer of funds. In 2006 it became illegal for banks to do it. You will eventually find a company that might accept it. However, they place themselves, and possibly you, in high risks.
Advertisers can promote certain forms of online gambling. Both in magazines and on billboards. There has never been any recorded case of anyone being prosecuted for buying these types of ads. If you find a publisher that accepts your ads, you are safe. It is they who take the risk.
Many online casinos are accepting American players. Many financial companies still accept and allow these transactions to take place. And although the laws might change, there is little chance that you, the player, will face any trouble for playing online. The companies transferring the funds might stop doing so, and that is why Cryptocurrencies exist. You can always find online casinos accepting Bitcoin, Ethereum etc. If you are a player wishing to play online casino games online from the U.S., make sure that the website is not based inside the U.S. And you are safe to gamble away.