Offshore Betting 2021
For many years, offshore betting has been a popular way for American players to get in on the action that was legally not allowed within the US. While the US government has clearly banned all offshore sites from operating in the country, many sites have continued to offer their services to American players, often under false pretences and posing as American sites.
While many American players have continued to play at offshore betting sites, this page goes into detail in describing all the reasons why US players should avoid all offshore online casinos. We also look at alternatives and all the ways American players can still get their gambling action without supporting illegitimate international sites.
Why is Offshore Betting Legal?
Ever since online gambling became popular, US authorities have always had an issue with international sites that were servicing Americans but were not paying taxes in the US. However, due to a complex legal situation, it was not possible for such sites to operate in the USA either, which made for a situation that many offshore betting companies made advantage of for a number of years. During this period, such companies were not prosecuted by the US authorities at all.
In 2006, Congress passed the UIGEA, which made it no longer legal for gambling companies to operate or hold offices in the USA. This led many major sites to leave the American market, while other offshore betting operators decided to ignore the new laws and simply continue their operations from remote countries such as Costa Rica.
Ever since, playing with offshore operators has become a major danger for all American players. While such sites still often advertise as US friendly, they are in fact completely unregulated entities with operations that are not monitored by any government body. This is exactly the reason that such operators were often found in violation of the basic principles of online gambling fairness.
Players who are thinking of playing with an offshore betting site should remember that by placing their private information and their money in the hands of such companies, they are basically putting their trust with people who are blatantly breaking the laws and regulations worldwide. There is no guarantee of fairness in any offshore betting site and many such sites have in fact proved to be fraudulent in many ways.
If you are wondering of the exact issues you may encounter by playing with offshore betting websites, these include the operator refusing to pay winnings, claiming you broke bonus or promotion rules, blocking your account or simply confiscating your funds.
In addition to all of these potential dangers, players should also be warned that by playing with offshore sites they are supporting tax evasion and money laundering and potentially getting involved in such activities themselves. The short answer to the common question; Is offshore betting legal in the US - No it is not! So stay with the following legal operators:
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Is Offshore Betting a Scam: Operator Check
We have looked at the offshore betting legal situation and we can say without any doubt that American players are best of simply avoiding all operators who are not licensed within the USA. However, we also wanted to check what kind of services players can receive at such sites, which is why we conducted detailed reviews of the “best offshore betting sites” and rated them in six major categories.
Betting Offer: A Limited Selection
When we talk of a sports betting site, the selection of different sports and competitions that players can enter is probably the single most important factor to look at. For offshore betting sites, we looked at this criteria before all others and we realized that such sites usually offer a much thinner and less versatile selection of sports and contests, mainly limited only to the most popular sports.
Betting Odds: Sub-Par Betting Lines
Another key factor in determining the quality of any betting site is the quality of the betting odds offered. After checking the offshore betting lines in much detail, we realized that they no longer beat the legal sites in this category either, even though in the past offshore sites used to often offer better odds in order to attract players to their businesses.
Bonuses: Questionable and with Limitations
Bonuses are often used as a main advertising tool of many gambling sites, but when it comes to offshore betting sites, all such advertisements are to be taken with a grain of salt. Since there is no regulation that applies to such sites, they often use false advertisement and only reveal the part of the truth about their bonus offers. The truth is that offshore betting bonuses often come with unrealistic wagering terms, maximum win limits and other limiting stipulations. The worst thing of all is the fact that players can’t really know if they will be paid once they do finally manage to win.
Payment Methods: Limited to Shady Methods
Since offshore betting sites are not legal in the USA, American banks are not legally allowed to transfer payments to such operators. For this reason, players cannot make deposits into offshore betting sites using their credit cards or bank accounts and must seek third party payment processors willing to complete such transfers. In the past, there were e-wallets and even banks that were willing to process, but nowadays Bitcoin and other crypto currencies are the main payment methods at offshore betting sites, making all such deposits extremely dangerous and shady.
Usability: Out-Dated Betting Sites
To make things even worse, offshore betting sites often use out-dated betting platforms that are slow, hard to navigate and not on par with what the modern and licensed operators are offering. Players often run into issues with their offshore betting accounts and can lose plenty of value simply due to non-functional platforms. The offshore betting apps often suffer the same issues, being slow and hard to access on a wide variety of mobile devices.
Customer Service: Often the Strongest Point
Offshore betting sites are trying to leave the impression that they are operating legally and within the law. For this reason, they often employ plenty of customer support agents and offer players multiple customer service lines in order to make players believe they are in good hands. Of all the departments, we have been left with a feeling that offshore betting sites invest the most in their customer service, a department meant to make players feel safe and relaxed while playing at non-licensed gambling sites.
Future of Offshore Betting: Making Offshore Betting Legit
To this day, players often ask; are offshore betting sites legal?! Because of the strange legal situation in which players are not legally forbidden to play at offshore sites, there is often an impression that such operators are acting legally. However, this is far from the truth, as all such sites are simply avoiding American authorities by hiding away in distant locations in countries with loose gambling laws.
The fact of the matter is that offshore betting sites are as illegal as possible without the owners being arrested and sites shut down. For this reason, it is extremely unlikely that any of the currently operating offshore betting sites will ever get licensed in the USA and become a legit gambling sites.
The future of all offshore betting looks pretty bleak at this point, as a growing number of online casinos are applying for licenses in all the states that have legalized online gambling, which means that with time there will be plenty of legal US sites for players to use, leaving the offshore betting sites high and dry.
FAQ: Why is Offshore Betting Legal?