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No. 1 Casino for players in Virginia - United States
9 / 10
Available in:Virginia - United States
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9.1 / 10
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Unlicensed operator
9 / 10
Available in:Virginia - United States
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9 / 10
Available in:Virginia - United States
  • A large variety of games
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9 / 10
Available in:Virginia - United States
  • Slots from top developers
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  • Licensed by the MGA

More information about Virginia – Online Casinos & Gambling Regulations

Table of Contents

Find the Best American Casino Online

Unlike West Virginia’s fully regulated online gambling market, Virginia is somewhat of a mixed bag. While recent changes legalized online sports betting in 2020, which was great news, online casinos have unfortunately not had the same treatment and remain in a gray-zone. As it is so far forbidden for local operators to establish themselves in Virginia, people instead flock to sites based overseas. These are still licensed to operate within their own jurisdictions and it is, therefore, the state government’s responsibility to block access to these sites. As this is something that is usually way out of the scope of most governments, players can freely access these sites but without being backed by defined industry standards or the possibility to take legal recourse.

  • Is the casino fully licensed?
  • What is the reputation of the licensing body?
  • Will you be able to use your preferred payment methods?
  • Will you be able to participate in loyalty programs?
  • Does the site feature sports betting?

Those wishing to go ahead and play anyway should first take the time to establish a site’s legitimacy and value. Asking yourself a few questions like the ones above is a good start and so is checking out some casino reviews like the ones found right here at GoodLuckMate.

Gambling Regulation – Lottery Board of Virginia 

You may be surprised to discover just how far Virginia’s relationship with gambling goes back. The 1612 “Great Virginia Lottery” was the first lottery to be held in what would later become the US. The lottery was first set up to fund the creation of the settlement of Jamestown, which is now home to over 15,000 people. The Virginia lottery we know today, run by the Lottery Board of Virginia, wasn’t established until 1987, however, this was still way before many other states implemented their own state-run lotteries. It is now this same board that will in charge of the legalized sports betting scene that has just sprung up as recently as 2020. The only exception is betting will not be allowed for college and university team matches. 

While this is certainly great news, it is still missing that extra step of giving the same treatment to online casinos. Many close by states, including West Virginia, have already made the leap and there is some hope that this new momentum will be a catalyst for further changes in the near future.

Localized Online Casinos

Despite the fact that there is very little incentive for online casinos to provide localized content to unregulated or restricted markets, Virginia is in the fortunate position of being a part of the US. Industry standards align well with US players, as English is the default language of the vast majority of sites, along with the fact that most are also US-centric when it comes to payments, but more on that below. Major US events, including the Superbowl and Oscars, also have big worldwide appeal and is, therefore, something that sites are happy to be a part of. It may however not be all that easy when looking for good promotions and deals though, as sites will generally only direct market themselves to their intended markets. While this may be less of an issue now that more and more states are loosening up their laws, it remains a factor for those who reside in unregulated states.

Gambling with US Dollars

In the same vein as English being the default language for the industry, so too are US dollars (alongside euros) the default currency. Online casinos cater to players from all over the world, but catering to the various local currencies and payment methods is simply too big an endeavor for the majority of operations. That is why defaults are provided, such as US dollars, which are widely available geographically while also being supported by virtually all payment providers around the world. It will therefore be extremely difficult to find an online casino that doesn’t support US dollar payments, as well as providing a choice of different payment methods to do so with. The only exception would be for the newly fashionable cryptocurrency casinos that deal exclusively in virtual currencies.

Casinos in Virginia

With a handful of other states having already lead the charge, Virginia sits in a very good position to learn from their examples. Virginia was considered rather restrictive when it came to gambling in the past, with the main contention being the complete ban on most types of operations, including tribally run casinos and riverboat casinos. The newly formed legislation authorizing sports betting both online and offline really gives the state a new image for gamblers around the world. The market remains in its infancy however and there is still a long road ahead to making it a successful and valuable addition to the state’s entertainment industry and tax revenues.

  • A gambling license is intended to protect players, and one of its main functions is to provide a mechanism for resolving disputes when they come up. If you have a dispute with a casino, and the casino is being unreasonable, the gambling authority will help you. For many licenses, this means you can contact the gambling authority to get help processing your withdrawals, claiming money the casino has debited from your account, or resolving other disputes that might arise. The likelihood that the gambling authority will help you in ways that are effective, however, depends on the procedures they have in place for this. This is yet another reason why choosing to play at a casino that has a safe license is important.

    Getting help directly from the gambling authority is not always necessary, or even an option. A lot of regulators have now enforced third-party dispute resolution. This means casinos must have an agreement with an arbitrator who will look into disputes on the behalf of players from a particular casino. This ensures your dispute will be reviewed by an objective third party. All trusted online casinos have information about arbitration on their websites if they use this option, or they’ll have the contact information for the gambling authority you should consult. However, you should always try to resolve your issues with the casino first, and a lot of casinos have separate email addresses specifically for handling complaints.

  • If you’re worried about the security of the transactions you’re making at a casino, you should look for a logo with the acronym PCI DSS. This stands for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, and this is something the payment industry has created. If you see this logo, it means the casino can be trusted for safe money transactions since they follow all of the rules set by the payment industry. Information about this can also be found in an FAQ section on the casino’s website.

    Another thing to look out for in terms of payments is where your money is kept while you play. Some gambling authorities, all of the best ones actually, regulate what the casino can do with your money while they are holding it. Your money shouldn’t go into a general bank account held by the casino; it should go into an account that is strictly for holding player funds. This means that as long as you have the money in your player account, it can’t be spent by the casino. Your deposit will be kept separate from the operating funds of the casino until your player account is empty, which will happen if you make a funds withdrawal or if you lose the money while playing.

  • The best known system tool for ensuring that a casino offers fair games is eCogra; however, there are other providers that also offer these kinds of systems. You want to make sure that the casino is using a certified third-party control system to ensure that the games of chance you’re playing are actually based on chance and not on other types of metrics. Rigged games are ones that have been set up to pay out less than they claim to or ones that give some players a greater chance of winning than others.

    The eCogra logo can often be found in the footer of the casino’s website, but not all casinos choose to display it. If you can’t see this logo, go to the FAQs and see if you can find information about random number generators. If there are no FAQs on the site, check out their terms and conditions or contact the casino’s support and ask how they ensure their games are safe.

  • An SSL-encrypted website should be mandatory for any casino, and very few casinos operate without this or similar safe encryption features. Always keep in mind that you are giving the casino quite a bit of sensitive information, including your payment details. When you’re uploading and sending documents to verify your identity, you want to make sure that no unauthorized third-party has access to them. Site security, therefore, doesn’t only include the website itself but also what the casino does on the backend. You should always look into a casino’s data security. You’ll normally find information about this in their terms and conditions and their privacy policy. If in doubt, contact their support and ask for more detailed information.

    Most trustworthy casinos have information about site security in the website footer, so simply scroll down and look for the logo of a well-known security system.

  • The gambling license a casino operates under will have a big impact on your security. Not all licenses are equally safe for players for the simple reason that they are issued by different gambling authorities that work in different ways and have different rules. The rules and regulations may be quite similar, but the way they are enforced is a different story entirely. For example, if a casino doesn’t comply with the regulations, some gambling authorities may just issue a fine while others may revoke the casino’s license outright. How often gambling authorities show up for an unscheduled inspection or control will also vary.

    The biggest differences between a safe, high quality gambling license and one that isn’t as good will usually show up in the areas of fair gaming, dispute resolution and the rules and systems for identifying and handling problem gamblers (responsible gambling). If your country of residence has its own gambling authority, playing at casinos that are licensed by them will be the safest option for you. Other international licenses that can be trusted are issued by the Malta Gambling Authority and the Gibraltar Regulatory Authority. Curacao eGaming is getting better at protecting players whereas licenses from Panama and Costa Rica, for instance, are considered less safe. The worst option is obviously a casino with no license whatsoever.