Is Sports Betting Legal in Virginia?
Yes, but you cannot bet in Virginia quite yet.See All States
- Can you bet online? No
- Can you bet in person? Pending
Virginia became the 22nd state to legalize sports betting after the legislature passed a bill in April that met Gov. Ralph Northam's specifications. A few details on the legislation: It allows for mobile and in-person betting. The state's lottery is in charge of approving licenses for online-only operators. We could see up to 18 online sportsbooks, which is similar to the set up we've seen have success in New Jersey. And you will not be allowed to bet on Virginia college sports team under the bill. Betting regulations must be completed by Sept. 15 at the latest. While there's still a lot to be hammered out, don't be shocked if Virginia is up and running before the end of the year.
Sports betting is coming to Virginia.
SB 384 won’t officially be law until July 1, but we’re hopeful sports betting will be live in Virginia by the end of 2020 at the latest.
Virginia’s bill includes full online betting, and more than a dozen operators will likely be present, creating a favorable environment for bettors.
VA Sports Betting Table of Contents
Click the links to jump to each section.
Expected Virginia Sports Betting Sites & Apps
Virginia could have a maximum of 18 sports betting licenses available — 12 online operators, up to five in-person casinos, and one for a relocating sports franchise.
It will also have somewhat reasonable fees for operators to enter the market ($250,000 for three years) and a favorable tax rate (15%). So you can expect national players like FanDuel and DraftKings to be present, plus plenty of others.
The Virginia Lottery is required to “issue a number of permits that will maximize tax revenue collected pursuant to the bill,” so there will be no shortage of big-time operators there.
Here’s a list of who we expect to have a sports betting site and app in Virginia.
We’ll continue to add more as operators announce their intentions in Virginia.
Virginia Sports Betting FAQ
Have questions about Virginia sports betting? We’ve got some answers, though not everything has been decided yet. We’ll continue to update as we learn more.
When Will Sports Betting Be Live in Virginia?
We don’t have a firm date on when sports betting will start in Virginia, but the bill will go into law on July 1. The Virginia Lottery has until Sept. 15 to set forth guidelines for operators.
We’re hopeful online betting in Virginia is live by the end of 2020 at the latest.
Can I Bet on Sports Online in Virginia?
Not yet, but Virginia’s bill includes online and in-person sports betting. It’s a favorable bill for bettors in the state.
What About In-Person Sportsbooks?
Virginia is one of nine states in the U.S. without commercial or tribal casinos, so sports betting operators don’t need to be tied to a brick-and-mortar casino to operate.
Virginia’s bill did specific that five cities — Richmond, Norfolk, Danville, Portsmouth and Bristol — can build casinos and sportsbooks, though each city will vote on that this fall.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam wanted NASCAR tracks Martinsville and Richmond Raceway included in the sports betting landscape, so he pushed to allow them to launch their own sportsbooks or partner with an existing operator.
The bill also allows a sports franchise that relocates to the state to have sports betting in its stadium (the Redskins might be headed to Virginia when their lease at FedEx Field in Andover, Md., expires in 2027).
All in all, don’t expect in-person sports betting in Virginia for a while.
Can I Use FanDuel Sportsbook in Virginia?
Not yet, but expect FanDuel to have a major presence in the state, hopefully by late 2020 at the earliest.
What Sports Can I Bet on in Virginia?
Virginia will have all the major sports available, with a few notable exceptions:
- No betting on Virginia-based college teams. New Jersey is the other state with this carveout, and it hasn’t hurt the state much from a revenue perspective. But it is a bummer for anyone who’s a fan of one of the four FBS football teams or 14 Division I men’s basketball teams in the state.
- No live betting on any college sports.
- No betting on college player props.
Who Runs Virginia Sports Betting?
The Virginia Lottery is in charge of issuing sports betting licenses to operators.
Where Else Can I Bet on Sports in the United States?
Wonder when sports betting is coming to your state? Check out our updated legal state tracker here.
Virginia borders West Virginia, which has full-scale online sports betting, if you’re looking to make some bets before Virginia goes live.
How to Bet on Sports in Virginia
1. New to sports betting? Check out our 11 tips to get started — everything from “what is a point spread” to how to shop for the best line.
2. Here are nine mistakes to avoid if you’re just getting into sports betting.
3. Placing in-person sports bets can be intimidating, whether you’re in Las Vegas or Virginia (some day).
4. Confused by sports betting terms? Check out our glossary.
Virginia Sports Betting Timeline
Pre-Legalization: Virginia has no casinos, and lawmakers have been pushing for years to get them to the state, but to no avail.
November 2018: Virginia Delegate Mark Sickles put forth a bill in Nov. of 2018 that included a lot of what ended up in the final bill — $250,000 operator fee, 15% tax rate for operators. But that bill only allowed for five operators.
March 2019: Gov. Ralph Northam signed a bill in March of 2019, but didn’t clear the Virginia legislature.
Early April 2020: The bill needed nearly a dozen revisions before arriving in its current form, HB 896. It made it back to Northam, who sent some revisions that asked for the inclusion of NASCAR tracks and operators to pay $50,000 to cover background check costs for each principal employee of the company.
Late April 2020: The legislature approved Northam’s changes and Northam signed the bill into law on April 29, 2020. It will go into effect on July 1.
What States Have Legalized Sports Gambling?
Sports betting is becoming legal across the country, though not every state has the full-scale online environment that’s coming to Virginia.
- Nevada (Live)
- Delaware (Live)
- New Jersey (Live)
- Mississippi (Live)
- West Virginia (Live)
- Pennsylvania (Live)
- Rhode Island (Live)
- Arkansas (Live)
- New York (Live)
- New Mexico (Live, limited)
- Illinois (Live)
- Indiana (Live)
- Iowa (Live)
- Colorado (Live)
- Montana (Passed)
- New Hampshire (Passed)
- Tennessee (Passed)
- North Carolina (Passed)
- Washington (Passed)