Is Online Sports Betting Legal in Indiana?
Not yet. A couple of bills to legalize sports betting were introduced to the legislative authorities in Indiana in 2018, but none have yet been voted on. However, steady progress has been made towards the end of the year.
So for now at least, online sports betting is not legal in Indiana.
In October 2018 a legislative study, commissioned to provide lawmakers with more information before they vote on a bill, recommended that Indiana join the seven US states that have already legalized sports betting.
In May 2018 the US Supreme Court overturned a long-standing federal ban on sports betting and gave each state the authority to create their own laws governing it.
The decision has opened up a multi-billion dollar opportunity in the US, and many states have wasted zero time jumping on board. More and more states are joining Nevada in offering fully legal and regulated sports betting all the time. Plenty more states have been debating the issue and preparing legalization bills. Indiana is currently in this latter stage of the process.
This page has everything you need to know about sports betting in Indiana. We look at the history of gambling in the state leading up to the Supreme Court decision in 2018. We’ll also explain the current situation in detail plus what we can expect for sports gambling legalization in the future.
Finally we’ll look into which sports are likely to attract the most gambling action when legalization does come to the Hoosier state for when betting is legalized, and we also answer the question of whether it’s legal to bet on fantasy sports and DFS in Indiana right now.
Consider this page your one-stop shop for everything related to sports betting in Indiana.
To find out more about other parts of the country, read our comprehensive US legal sports betting guides for each state.
The History of Online Sports Betting in Indiana
Although sports betting is not yet legal in the state, Indiana residents are no strangers to gambling. There are currently 13 casinos operating in the state, including several riverboat casinos.
Indiana casinos offer a combination of slots, table games and live poker. The locations of the casinos are subject to strict limitations, and they are generally grouped into two areas.
The first, in the north-east is not far from neighbouring Illinois, with casinos here commonly used by Chicago residents. The second is on the southern border with Kentucky.
Indiana is one of only a handful of states that explicitly outlaws online betting, which means that all of the legal gambling that takes place in the state is live. However, this law has been subject to much discussion in the movement towards legalized sports betting, and it is very possible it will be changed. Indiana also allows horse and dog racing, and has a state lottery.
Overall, Indiana residents and lawmakers have a permissive and positive attitude towards gambling.
Sports betting, however, has been prevented in the state since the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) was introduced in 1992. PASPA acted as a federal ban on all sports betting across the US, with only a few exceptions like Nevada. This was the case right up until the middle 2018, when the sports betting game in the US changed. More on that in the next section.
The Current Online Sports Betting Situation in Indiana
In May 2018 PASPA was repealed by the Supreme Court, removing the country-wide ban on sports betting and giving each state the authority to determine its own sports betting laws.
Since that date, Indiana has moved slowly but productively towards creating a regulated market.
Two bills have been put forward, but neither were voted on. Legislators determined they needed more information before voting on any bill, and commissioned an independent study into the issue. The results were positive.
The legislative study committee unanimously recommended that lawmakers pass a new sports betting bill when they reconvene in early 2019. This is an extremely positive sign for the future of legalized sports betting in the Hoosier state. What’s more, the study included positive suggestions regarding incorporating online technology into any future sports betting bill.
A key part of the study was the predicted tax revenue that will be generated for public services in the state, with the figure of $250 million mentioned. This is likely to prove extremely influential to legislators as they consider a new bill.
Right now, there is no firm plan on the table for legalizing sports betting in Indiana. However, momentum is growing and it seems highly likely that a bill will be on the table in early 2019 and it is likely to include online betting.
Which Online Sports Betting Sites Are Legal in Indiana?
Right now there are no online sports betting sites that are legal in Indiana. However, the study commissioned by legislators contained positive messages about the possibility of including online betting in any future bill. Hopefully, a bill will be introduced in early 2019.
In the meantime, betting on unregulated offshore sites is possible for residents in Indiana. However, these sites are not strictly legal and should be avoided. We advise waiting for US-licensed options which will arrive soon.
What Sports Can You Bet on Online in Indiana?
At the moment, it is not legal to be on any sports in Indiana. That said, momentum is growing behind the movement towards legalization. When that day arrives, the Hoosier State has plenty of betting options for sports fans.
In this section we’ll run down the biggest teams and sports in Indiana that are likely to attract the most wagering action.
The Indianapolis Colts represent the Hoosier State in the NFL. The Colts have won two Super Bowls in their time, in 1970 and 2006. Their most recent triumph was in a rich vein of form for the Colts, when they were led by star quarterback Peyton Manning.
The Colts form has been a little more patchy in recent years, but they are one of the most recognizable franchises in the NFL. College football is also popular in Indiana.
Indiana is represented in the NBA by the Indiana Pacers so we expect a lot of players in Indiana to be betting on the NBA. The Pacers moved from the ABA in 1976, where they won three Championships. They are yet to win an NBA Championship, but do have several Division titles to their name.
The Indiana Fever represents the state in the WNBA and the Fort Wayne Mad Ants play in the Minor Leagues. Indiana is also considered the home of high school basketball, meaning the state has strong basketball roots. In college basketball, the Indiana Hoosiers have won five NCAA National Championships.
Indiana is currently without any MLB teams, but many minor league baseball teams make their home in the state. The Indianapolis Indians, formed in 1902, are one of the oldest minor league teams in the US. The Indians currently play in the International League.
Indiana does not have a huge tradition of hockey teams, but does have a number teams competing in the lower leagues. The state does not have any teams in the NHL.
Auto racing is probably the sport Indiana is most associated with. Every year over 250,000 people attend the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on Memorial Day weekend, making it one of the most popular racing events in the world.
Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where the race is held, is one of the most loved tracks in the country. It previously played host to the United States Grand Prix. Drag racing is also popular in the state, which hosts the NHRA US Nationals, probably the most illustrious drag race in the world.
Is Betting on Fantasy Sports Legal in Indiana?
It is a little complicated but the short answer is yes. All the major DFS sites including FanDuel and DraftKings accept players from Indiana and for all intents and purposes it is legal.
While there is no law that explicitly states DFS is legal, at the end of October 2018 the Indiana Supreme Court found in favor of fantasy sports providers in a case against former college football players. The result was seen as a major boost for fantasy sports in the state.
As the legal sports betting movement grows in Indiana, expect more clarity on this issue.
Is There No Deposit Sports Betting in Indiana?
There is no legal online sports betting in Indiana at the moment. While it may be the case that some offshore sites offer no deposit sports betting to people in Indiana, they are not regulated and not technically legal, so it’s best to avoid them.
When legal sports betting arrives in the state, we can expect the same bonuses and deals we’re used to seeing in other markets, including no-deposit bonuses and free bet offers.
What Is the Future of Online Sports Betting in Indiana?
The future looks extremely positive for sports betting in Indiana. The study commissioned by legislators was a sign that they are receptive to legalization of sports betting. The study recommended moving ahead with legalization, and including online betting in the bill. The noises being made by legislators are positive too.
Rep. Alan Morrison stressed the importance of having all the data available, before suggesting that progress will be made in the next legislative session in early 2019.
Sports betting appears to be around the corner for Indiana. While signs are positive, there is legislative red tape to be sorted out before legalization occurs.
Will Online Sports Betting Ever Be Legal in Indiana?
While nothing is set in stone yet, experts believe legalized sports betting will arrive in Indiana as early as 2019.
With a casino infrastructure already in place, a large population of sports fans and a generally positive attitude towards gambling, Indiana is one of the best candidates in the country for a successful legal sports betting market.
Indiana Cruising Towards Legalization
All the signs coming from Indiana since PASPA was repealed have been positive. The recommendations of the study commissioned by legislators can be regarded as a major step towards legalization. The fact that the study included positive suggestions about online betting is a further boost.
Legal sports betting in the US has become an extremely valuable opportunity. Plenty of states have already moved to take advantage of it, and from the activity of 2018 it looks like Indiana won't be too far behind.
Make sure to check back on this page for important developments as they happen. We’ll keep this guide updated as Indiana moves closer to passing a sports betting bill in 2019.