On Monday, Jan. 14, the US Department of Justice reversed a 2011 opinion that the Federal Wire Act applies only to sports betting. The opinion, which is a 23-page document, was dated Nov. 2, 2018. This reversal of opinion puts into question US igaming, such as those run by NJ online casinos.
What Does The Reversed Opinion Of The Federal Wire Act Mean For Online Casinos?
Following the 2011 DOJ opinion of the Wire Act, states such as New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware legalized online gaming. Since that time, Pennsylvania has also legalized online gaming, though the launch of online casinos, as well as PA sportsbooks, has yet to get off the ground.
But what does this reversal from the DOJ mean? Well, a lot could change. Simply put, the DOJ’s latest opinion may impact any form of gambling that crosses state lines; lottery, bingo, sports betting, poker, DFS, casino and more.
For example, the multi-state agreement between Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey for online poker could be in question with this new opinion of the Wire Act. It could also impact things like credit card processing; if processing occurs out-of-state, for any form of gambling, it could be called into question. A lot is left to interpretation here and it's yet to be seen if this will fall to Congress to draft a new bill, or go the way of the courts (if the DOJ decides to prosecute.)
NJ Online Casinos Reach $1 Billion In Revenue As DOJ Clouds iGaming’s Future
December was a strong month for NJ gaming operators, as the combined revenue from online poker and casino games was $28.97 million. This marks another record-breaking month for NJ online gaming revenue. For 2018, the yearly gross revenue total is now at $298.66 million. Since the NJ online gaming market has opened, the total revenue of NJ casinos has eclipsed the $1 billion mark, reaching $1.021 billion.
The market leader is still the Golden Nugget Casino Online, along with their group of operators, which includes Sugarhouse Casino Online and Betfair Casino. The group totaled a record-breaking $10.17 million in December.
In total, the licensed NJ online casinos generated $28.97 million in December of 2018, up $1.86 million from the previous month.