Americans and Canadians may share a passion for online gambling, but the way the US and Canada address it is completely different. What do the two countries have in common when it comes to online gambling, and how do they differ?
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The legality of online gambling
In the US, federal law regards online gambling as legal but leaves the details to the individual states. In the state of Pennsylvania, citizens can legally gamble at a US online casino for real money. Michigan and New Jersey also have well-developed online gambling sectors. However, in some states like Utah, online gambling is still prohibited.
In Canada, online gambling is not prohibited, but the services have to be licensed or the provincial government should be the direct owner. In the US, citizens are not permitted to place wagers on online casinos or sportsbooks that are based outside of its borders.
Canada does not tax any winnings from online gambling, whereas in the US gambling market, there is a flat 25% tax on winnings. No matter how small the winnings are, the tax still applies. Those who gamble for a living can apply for a reduction.
If Canadian players only do offshore gambling, they are not tied to Canadian laws and can use any game provider. In the US, only certain game providers are licensed – Betsoft, Real-Time Gaming (RTG) and Scientific Games. Some states recently introduced other international game developers, and others are likely to follow suit in the future.
The US and Canada offer the same deposit and withdrawal methods. Players can use Visa, MasterCard, Skrill, Neteller and any other method they prefer. The crypto market is decentralized and uncontrolled by a single institution, which means cryptocurrencies are becoming increasingly popular, but they are still to be accepted by the regulated US online casinos as a payment method. An advantage the US has in terms of currency is the extensive use of the US dollar both internally and in offshore casinos.
Canadians probably have the opportunity to get bigger bonuses than Americans because of huge market competition domestically. The market is more limited in the US, but gamblers can still get some large bonuses.
What is likely to happen in the future?
As the interest in online gambling grows, the Canadian casinos are riding high on the opportunities it offers. Whether the US will start allowing international gambling casinos is yet to be seen.
When online gambling is not regulated, there is no recourse for players who are subjected to fraud or face other problems when gambling. Gamers in Canada used to find it difficult to identify safe online casinos due to the lack of regulation but with the opening of market, that’s not a roadblock anymore.