Indiana is now the 13th U.S. state and the 2nd in the Midwest, after Iowa, to offer legal online and in-person sports betting. Sports betting in Indiana became legal when Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a law passed by the legislature on May 8, 2019.
While gaming is a highly regulated industry, Holcomb believes that the legislation will spur positive economic growth, even create hundreds of permanent construction jobs for over 11,000 locals state-wide.
The first Indiana sportsbooks opened in 2019, with the first mobile sports betting app going live on Oct. 3, 2019.
Top online betting sites in Indiana
The executive director of the Indiana Gaming Commission, Sara Gonso Tait says the commission will be charged with approving all sports betting platforms including both sports betting apps and brick-and-mortar operations.
However, it will be up to the casinos, racinos and off-track betting facilities that are seeking licenses to submit the information for the commission to review.
Sports fans were hoping sports betting apps would be available before the start of the college and NFL football seasons. Unfortunately, that didn’t materialize. The first legal betting app did become available during week 5 of the season, though.
Launch dates for Indiana retail and online sportsbooks
Sportsbook providers in Indiana have partnered with land-based casinos to offer sports betting.
There are quite a handful of well-known operators actively trying to expand their business in the US market.
Here is a list of retail and online sportsbook partnerships and their launch dates.
|Sportsbook||Casino Partner||Launch Date|
|DraftKings Sportsbook||Ameristar||Sept. 2019|
|FanDuel Sportsbook||Blue Chip Casino|
|BetRivers Sportsbook||French Lick Resort Casino||Oct. 2019|
|BetMGM||Belterra Casino||Sept. 2019|
|Caesars Sports||Indiana Grand Casino||Sept. 2019|
|Kambi||Hollywood Casino||Sept. 2019|
|Caesars Sports||Winner’s Circle Clarksville||Sept. 2019|
|Caesars Sports||Horseshoe Hammond||Sept. 2019|
|Caesars Sports||Caesars Southern Indiana||Dec. 2019|
|William Hill||Tropicana Evansville||Sept. 2019|
|Caesars Sports||Hoosier Park||Sept. 2019|
|Caesars Sports||Winner’s Circle New Haven||Sept. 2019|
|BetAmerica||Rising Star Casino Resort||Nov, 2019|
|BetIndiana||Majestic Star I & II Casinos||TBA|
Launching online sports betting in Indiana
The Indiana Gaming Commission is focused on a successful retail sportsbook launch in the state before turning its focus towards launching online sports betting.
The IGC did not place restrictions on when mobile betting could begin. Instead, Indiana casinos needed to show the commission proper internal controls and illustrate that geolocation services are in place.
The IGC must ensure the following protocols are in order:
- The sportsbook licensing fee of $100,000 has been paid
- Geolocation technical requirements are operational
- Internal rules and regulations are in place
- Operators are certified by the Indiana Testing Lab
- Servers and data centers have been inspected
- Self-restriction and voluntary exclusion programs are in place for problem gamblers
BetRivers was the first online sportsbook to launch in Indiana and meet the IGC’s requirements. BetRivers mobile sports betting app went live on Oct. 3, 2019.
Indiana sports betting rules
Besides complying with the technical requirements established by the IGC, each Indiana sportsbook must follow state gambling laws that require sports bettors to be 21 years of age or older to bet online.
Placing wagers on high school, youth and e-sports events are illegal in Indiana. However, betting on college sports (including football) is legal in the state.
Indiana is definitely on the cusp of a substantial online sports betting opportunity.
It has the potential to be the state with the most online sportsbooks with the ability for casinos to offer three skins for online sports betting.
DFS in Indiana
Indiana was one of the first states to legalize daily fantasy sports, commonly known as DFS. It was then-Gov. Mike Pence that signed DFS into law in 2016. The law went beyond legalizing DFS, too. It actually defined DFS as a non-gaming activity in Indiana.
Legalizing DFS did not have the desired effect on Indiana, however. The $50,000 licensing fee was too steep for small operators, clearing the path for the two largest DFS platforms in the country, DraftKings and FanDuel.
Indiana online Lottery
Now that sports betting is legal and live in Indiana, the state is looking to potentially expand its gambling revenue by allowing Indiana lottery players to purchase tickets online.
The Indiana Business Journal (IBJ) reports that the Indiana Lottery operator, IGT Indiana, is planning to study the viability of launching online lottery games. If Indiana passes a gambling expansion act that legalizes online lottery tickets sales, it would only be the seventh state to do so. The other states include:
- New Hampshire
Don’t expect to buy those Powerball or Mega Millions tickets anytime soon, however. It will be 2020 before IGT Indiana even makes its presentation to the Hoosier Lottery Commission.
Indiana online casino gambling
Indiana sports betting may be legal, and online lottery ticket sales may be under consideration, but online casino gambling has a ways to go before it makes its way to the Hoosier State. A new law legalizing online casinos would need to pass both houses of the General Assembly and proceed to the governor for a signature.
Casino gambling includes:
- Online slots
- Table games
That means Indiana online poker players and online slot machine fans will have to wait to get their gambling fix in Indiana. It is likely the earliest Indiana will see online casino gaming will be in 2021.
Sports betting tax rates and licensing fees
Indiana sportsbooks are required to pay an initial licensing fee of $100,000, with renewal fees of $50,000 payable annually. Sports betting in Indiana is taxed at the rate of 9.5 percent on adjusted gross revenue. A portion of that tax is allocated to addressing problem gambling.