For many years, one of the most sought-after markets in the world, the US market, was closed to operators of online gaming, betting and sports betting. Same rule applied to all ancillary services providers, such as media affiliates. The US market was inaccessible due to the 2011 Federal Government announcement that online domestic sites offering gaming were functioning illegally under applicable legislation. Following that announcement, Federal authorities ordered the shut-down of the largest internet poker websites in the U.S.
Only a handful of states, such as Nevada and New Jersey, made a firm decision to defy the Federal position by enacting intra state online gaming laws. The federal government countered these efforts continuously and vigorously.
The shifting point came in 2018, when the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Murphy v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, et al., found that the Professional and Amateur Sports ProtectionAct (PASPA) of 1992 was unconstitutional and that states could decide for themselveswhether to legalize or prohibit sports betting.
The Supreme Court’s ruling was exactly what the US states have been waiting for, with many of them seizing the momentum and enacting laws aimed at legalizing online gaming, betting and sports betting. Among the states which have already enacted such laws you may find Indiana, Pennsylvania, Washington DC, New Jersey, Illinois, Nevada, Delaware, West Virginia, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Oregon, North Carolina, New York, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Montana, Mississippi, Iowa, Arkansas and Colorado.
Even online advertising giants such as Google have demonstrated the growing acceptance of online gaming in the US by allowing ads promoting Sports betting in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Montana, New Jersey, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia. Later on, Google announced that it will allow state-licensed entities to promote online casinos in Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
Nowadays, with the COVID-19 pandemic hitting the entire globe, all pending legislative and regulatory initiatives have been paused. However, it is expected that once states’ governments resume their activities, we will see yet another surge of legislation aimed at either finalizing pending legislative proposals, or the drafting and submission to public comments of new legislation by states which have not done so till this point.
With regards to media affiliate marketing, some of the above mentioned states, such as Indiana, Pennsylvania, Washington DC, New Jersey and Illinois have introduced specific licensing regimes for media affiliates. On the other hand, some of the states which have legalized this industry do not require an affiliate to register or obtain a local license but will typically require an affiliate to show that he has established a contractual relationship with a local operator by submitting a letter of intent form the said operator to the local state regulator. Rodhe Island is an example for such practice.
As to the licensing requirements and procedures, these vary from one state to another. Indiana is an example of a simple and fast track licensing regime, as you can earn your license within a month from submission. Pennsylvania can be seen as having an intermediate licensing regime in place, while the licensing regime of Washington DC, New Jersey and Illinois are amongst the more complex, consisting of highly detailed and demanding application packages.
The core basic requirements which will apply in most jurisdictions includes setting up a company in the US (it can be in any state in the US, not necessarily the state where you are applying for a license), forms and declarations to be signed in front of a US consular officer, set of fingerprints to be provided by each shareholder and officer of the company applying for a license. Some states will require the affiliate media applicant to provide a letter of intent from a local operator. Others, require applicants to obtain a local business registration license as an eligibility condition even apply with the local gaming / betting / sports betting regulatory agency.
Application fees vary a lot between states, starting with Indiana’s lowest fare at $500, through intermediate fees of $2,000-2,500 in Pennsylvania and New Jersey up to the highest mark of $10,000 in Washington DC and Illinois.
Needless to say that the potential lying in the US market is enormous and therefore highly attractive, as more and more states value the benefits of legalizing online gambling, betting and sports betting in their territories and the economic boost that such industry may bring to them at any times. For that reason, we expect that those states who have not acted so far in legalizing these industries in their territories, will proceed and do so once their government resume normal function.
If you want to claim your share of the US market, now is a great time. Get started by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org.