The legal status of online poker in Illinois

If you're an Illinois dweller and into your poker games, you might be confused about your options in the state. Although at the moment online gambling and poker are not legal here, potential legislation changes are on the horizon. Currently US poker fans in the state continue to enjoy gaming at their own risk, but if you are interested in finding out what your legal poker options are then we can help. Our experts have also checked out some top quality poker sites to prepare the shortlist on this page.

Read on to discover:

  • The law on Illinois online poker
  • All about bill 1739
  • If you can play online poker in Illinois
  • Playing Illinois-based poker websites
  • Accessing international sites from Illinois
  • If people in Illinois want legal online poker
  • What the future holds
  • The FAQs of Illinois poker fans
Top Legal Poker Rooms

What’s the legal situation with online poker in Illinois?

Three states in America have already passed laws to make online poker legal, being Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware. Illinois is yet to join them, but those covering developments put Illinois in the category of “second wave” states, suggesting it’s a question of when and not if.

Bill 1739 and a mood of hope in Illinois

An Illinois gambling expansion bill was passed to the senate in 2013, but it was decided at the final hour to remove provisions for online gambling. The reasoning behind this appears to be that a standalone bill, focused purely on online gambling, is expected any time now.

What it means for Illinois residents who want to play poker

The legal situation with regard to online poker in Illinois is a complicated one in 2015. We can find no record of an Illinois resident being charged or prosecuted in relation to playing online poker, which appears to suggest there is little to no risk of repercussions. That said, we would always advise potential players to consult with legal expert before playing.

What about poker sites based in Illinois?

It’s currently illegal for an online poker site to operate out of Illinois. Should the state legalize online poker at some point, as expected, licenses will be awarded to qualifying websites.

Can I play international online poker websites in Illinois?

There are many international sites that will allow residents of Illinois to register and play real money legal poker. Again, we advise you speak to a qualified legal professional should you seek full clarification on the possible implications.

What are people saying about online poker in Illinois?

 “It’s something that’s going to be here,” said Illinois senate president John Cullerton of online gambling, in March this year. “There are three states that have it.

“I think, though, that we cannot take that issue up until we resolve whether or not we’re going to have new casinos in Illinois and that again is very difficult to predict.”

What’s the future of online poker in Illinois?

The state of Illinois, and in particular Chicago, has a reputation for leading the way when it comes to the legal system in America. Residents of Illinois should expect online poker to be legal inside the next couple of years, and when Chicago does make online poker legal, Illinois may well become a hub when it comes to the best sites in America.

The hold-up, for now, is simply the passing of other legislation relating to the casino business in Illinois. Once that’s settled, everything should happen quickly.


Is online poker legal in Illinois?

Not yet, though most close to the subject in Illinois believe a state law is coming very soon.

What age do you have to be to gamble in Illinois?

Individuals can play the state lottery and take part in pari-mutuel betting from the age of 18 in Illinois. Only those 21 and above are allowed in the casinos however.

Are there live casinos in Illinois?

Yes, there are a few casinos in Illinois. There are also gambling riverboats, which offer a wide array of poker games.

Can I make deposits in Illinois?

Depending on the legal real money poker site you play at, different deposit options will be available. It’s not always easy to find one that suits your needs, but there’s usually a way of putting money in your pot.