What’s In and Out For Gambling and Gaming Law? Recent Trends, Updates and Developments
Over the years, the gambling and gaming industry has become an enormous source of taxes for individual states. However, with the new Wire Act opinion letter from the Department of Justice (DOJ), this could possibly change. In January 2019, the DOJ backpedaled on its nine-year opinion declaring that Wire Act, a federal law that bans interstate money transactions, is only applicable to sports gambling. With the legislation’s recent extension to all forms of gambling, certain industry sectors are expected to be affected. Gaming attorneys and other professionals should keep an eye on this change as well as on other regulatory updates in this field of law to ensure the compliance of their clients.
The gaming industry is epitomized by its ostentatious, lucrative casinos, but with great prosperity comes a price – regulatory control. States traditionally have been vested with the authority to regulate gaming activity within their borders. Enforcement of this regulatory structure typically is led by a gaming commission, which has the power to issue gaming licenses, generally after a review of suitability, and to closely monitor compliance with state law leading up to and during operation. When gaming operators overstep their bounds, they are at risk for strict penalties, including limitations on the operation, significant monetary fines, or even loss of license.
Join a panel of key thought leaders and professionals assembled by The Knowledge Group as they provide the audience with an in-depth analysis of the implications of the DOJ’s revised Wire Act interpretation. The panel will also provide a thorough discussion of the best compliance practices in light of the change in the Wire Act, current regulatory challenges, and other recent developments.
Some of the major topics that will be covered in this course are:
- The DOJ’s Wire Act Interpretation – Then and Now
- Regulation of Sports Wagering
- Notable Court Rulings
- Other Recent Developments
- Potential Regulatory Challenges
- Best Compliance Practices
- What Lies Ahead
Joanna Sykes-Saavedra, Attorney
DLA Piper LLP (US)
- Sports Betting is proliferating across the country at a pace never before seen in the gaming industry. While the quick legalization and regulation in existing markets has been expected, states are authorizing sports betting at an unprecedented pace.
- Joanna will provide an overview of gambling law in the US, with a deeper dive into two jurisdictions that currently offer regulated sports betting.
- As part of the review of sports betting in NJ and PA, Joanna will provide some detail regarding the growth of the market in these jurisdictions, as well as an overview of licensure tiers and disclosure requirements.
Elizabeth Kelley Cierzniak, Partner
Faegre Baker Daniels LLP
- The Wire Act was enacted in 1961 as part of a Kennedy-era push against illegal bookmaking via telephone and telegraph. At the time, no states operated lotteries, only one state permitted casino gambling, and public use of the internet was still two decades in the future.
- For the first 50 years after the Wire Act’s passage, the Department of Justice took the position that its prohibitions apply to all forms of interstate gaming. Efforts to update the Wire Act to reflect both the growth of the gaming industry and the explosion of technology repeatedly failed to gain passage. However, when the DOJ determined in 2011 that the Wire Act was limited to sports betting, states finally had the green light to move forward with online gaming and provide lottery games over the internet.
- But then earlier this year, the DOJ stunned the gaming industry by releasing a new opinion that reversed its long-standing view that the Wire Act is limited to sports betting. Although a New Hampshire district court subsequently struck down the new opinion, the issues surrounding both the Wire Act and the Unlawful Interstate Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA) remain unsettled and the continuing uncertainty has cast a cloud over the future of online gaming, interstate lotteries and sports betting.
Elizabeth G. McCurrach, Attorney
- The Supreme Court’s May 2018 decision in Murphy v. NCAA fundamentally changed the sports gambling landscape. With the overturn of PASPA, states now have the right to legislate for legalized sports gambling in their state. As states rush to market, myriad legal issues have arisen.
- One of the main reasons states are citing to legalize gambling is an increase in state revenue which is being accomplished in two ways: taxation and licensing fees. States vary on their tax structure, though certain patterns are beginning to emerge with higher taxes on mobile betting amongst them. Concerning licensing fees, states vary wildly, anywhere from $2,000 to $10 million, with complex reasons motivating this divergence.
- In July 2018, the NBA announced a partnership with MGM Resorts concerning the use of official league data. Other leagues followed suit, and sportsbooks’ required use of official league data is now codified into the laws of Tennessee and Illinois. However, one practice that could harm the leagues’ official data is courtsiding. Courtsiding involves transmitting information from the live event to beat the delay from television or other feeds. It has been used as a workaround by gambling institutions who do not want to pay for the data. A closer look at tennis provides a useful resource for learning more about best practices.
- Illinois: A case study. In June 2019, Illinois took final steps towards legalizing sports gambling in the state. Their law is a patchwork of the many competing interests amongst the casino lobby, leagues, teams and legislators.
Who Should Attend:
- Criminal and Legal Lawyers
- Gaming Attorneys
- Online Gambling Operators and Regulators
- Attorneys General
- Counsel and Advisors
- Criminal and Civil Litigators
- Casino Owners
- Other interested/related Professionals
Joanna Sykes-Saavedra focuses her practice on the intellectual property and technology sector, with an emphasis on outsourcing and procurement as well as licensing and technology transactions. Joanna has represented financial services companies and other large corporations in connection with complex professional services agreements and license agreements relating to finance and accounting, information technology and other business process services.
Joanna also has counseled clients on gaming-related matters. She has represented an overseas wagering technology company in its transaction with a governmental agency and has advised clients on evolving regulatory requirements for internet gaming licensure in New Jersey. Joanna has represented clients seeking to launch Internet gaming offerings in the United States and has worked with state governments to procure and engage lottery private management services.
Joanna Sykes-Saavedra focuses her practice on the intellectual property and technology sector, with an emphasis on outsourcing and procurement as …
Faegre Baker Daniels Partner Libby Cierzniak represents corporations, trade associations and public sector clients in regulatory and government relations matters before the Indiana General Assembly and state agencies. She plays an active role in drafting and advocating for passage of legislation addressing education finance, taxation, gaming, professional regulation, health insurance and other issues. She has particular expertise in gaming law, counseling casino licensees and other gaming entities on a broad range of gaming regulatory matters including corporate financings, licensure, transfer of ownership and bankruptcy/restructuring. Libby recently authored the chapter on Indiana gaming law for The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Gambling 2019. Prior to joining FaegreBD, Libby spent 14 years in the political arena, serving as Communications Director for the Indiana Republican Party and as Publications Director for the Indiana Senate Republican Caucus.
Faegre Baker Daniels Partner Libby Cierzniak represents corporations, trade associations and public sector clients in regulatory and government relations matters …
Elizabeth McCurrach is an attorney in BakerHostetler’s New York office and a member of the Sports and Entertainment Industry team. In addition to her litigation practice, a significant portion of Elizabeth’s time is devoted to counseling clients in the sports industry on a wide range of issues, including the implications of legalized sports betting and developing strategies to proactively prepare for a widespread increase in sports betting. Elizabeth has extensive domestic and cross-border investigations experience. She represents financial institutions, governmental entities and high-net-worth individuals in motion practice, discovery, trial preparation and appellate litigation for complex contractual disputes and bankruptcy proceedings. Elizabeth works with clients to address and minimize compliance risk in connection with environmental laws, FTC rules, FCPA and import/export regulations. Elizabeth's commentary has been featured in Sports Litigation Alert, Law360, Law360UK and Financial Disputes, and she has been named a New York Metro Super Lawyers “Rising Star.”
Elizabeth McCurrach is an attorney in BakerHostetler’s New York office and a member of the Sports and Entertainment Industry team. …
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Method Of Presentation:
Basic knowledge of gambling laws
NY Category of CLE Credit:
Law Practice Management
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About DLA Piper LLP (US)
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