Sports betting has been a favorite pastime of many Americans, but until recently, most of that activity had to take place in an unregulated environment. Thankfully, in 2018 the Supreme Court struck down an archaic law that prevented states outside Nevada from accepting sports bets legally, meaning each state government was able to pass laws for their individual state. Indiana was one of the states that passed legislation early on in this process, and today there are many locations for residents and visitors to the Hoosier State to place a bet on their favorite sport. Let’s have a look at the Indiana sports betting laws and how to choose from the available legal sportsbook options in the state.
Sports Betting Law in Indiana
It was evident that lawmakers in Indiana wanted to move quickly on introducing sports betting legislation when they were given the opportunity after the repeal of PASPA in May 2018. Unlike states like New Jersey or Delaware, there were not any bills pre-approved before the repeal, and the legislative session ended shortly after the repeal of the federal law, so that pushed any chance of sportsbooks opening the in the state until at least 2019.
It didn’t take long into the 2019 legislative session for sports betting to be approved in the state, and the launch date for land-based sports betting was set for September 1, 2019, with online betting being available a month later.
Here is a breakdown of some of the main features of the Indiana Sports Betting law:
- To protect high school athletes and minors, there is no wagering allowed on amateur sports featuring anyone under the age of 18, nor on esports competitions.
- All the land-based properties in the state are allowed to apply for a license, each of which comes with one online skin for digital wagering.
- To create an account or wager anonymously, you must be at least 21 years old.
- You can create an online account directly on the site or app of choice.
- Operators pay a 9.5% tax on gaming revenues, which is one of the lower rates across the regulated states.
These laws are very player-friendly, especially the fact that you can create an account and bet from any physical location within the state borders.
Sportsbooks that are open in Indiana
As mentioned above, all the gaming establishments in Indiana were able to open sportsbooks, and they all have. Here is a list of all the locations of retail sportsbooks in the state.
Ameristar Casino Resort
Belterra Casino Resort
Blue Chip Casino
French Lick Resort Casino
Harrah’s Hoosier Park
Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg
Horseshoe Hammond Casino
Horseshoe Southern Indiana Hotel & Casino
Indiana Grand Racing & Casino
Majestic Star Casino
Rising Star Casino Resort
Tropicana Evansville Casino
Winner’s Circle Clarksville
Winner’s Circle Indianapolis
Winner’s Circle New Haven
Many of the above properties are owned by the same parent group, so we expect to see at minimum eight online sportsbook brands to be available to Indiana residents. As of January 2020, there are only three that are open:
We expect more to open in 2020, and when they do, we will update this list along with a review of each site.
The Most Common Forms of Sports Bets
Now that sports betting is legal, you may be looking to make your first bet. If that is the case, we want to make sure you aren’t intimidated by what you will find at a retail or online sportsbook. There are literally hundreds of betting options per game, so making sure you can read and understand the bet types is a critical component to your experience. Here is a quick review of the most popular bet types you will find.
Point Spread – a bet where you make a selection on one outcome which is handicapped to even the odds.
Money Line – a bet on the outright winner of a single event
Parlay – a wager on the combined outcome of 2 or more events, paying only if you are correct in all your selections
Props – bets on individual parts of an event such as how many points a player will score or who will score first, etc. There can be dozens of props per game depending on the sports
Futures – bets made on the outcome of a season or championship
Totals -bets made on the overall score of a single event.
There are some more exotic bets, but we’ll leave that for the advanced strategy session!
Choosing the best sportsbook
By the time all the sites have launched, there will be a lot of competitors in the regulated sports betting space vying for your attention. Choosing a book that fits your gambling needs is the first step on having an enjoyable experience. Here is what our team of professional bettors look for when checking out a book for the first time.
- Does the site offer all the sports that you want to bet – the game selection is pretty important to know before you create an account and make a deposit. All the sites will offer the major American sports, but if you are a fan of something more regional or international, you should check the odds boards first. You can do this online without having to make an account.
- What type of bonuses are there? The sites will all be trying to get you to make a deposit by offering you bonuses and free bets. Always check the fine print to see what it takes to actually turn these offers into cash.
- Customer support – all of the sites should offer 24/7 support but you would be surprised how many won’t or will limit it to email. Find the sites that offer you support at the time you need it in the format you desire.
Our reviews of each site will go into detail on those topics, and more so you don’t have to do all the work yourself.
Indiana Sports Betting FAQ
Can I make a deposit in cash so that I don’t have to use my credit card?
Good news for those of you that want to keep your betting habits close to your chest. You can indeed go to a casino that is partnered with the site you are playing with and make your deposit in cash right at the cage. As for withdrawals, every site has its own policy, so you will need to refer to the site directly.
Can my friends visiting me in Indiana create their own accounts?
Yes, they can. Indiana law allows anyone within the state border to make both retail and mobile bets. Their apps will not work outside the state line, so any activity including withdrawal requests, will have to happen inside the state. The casinos on the border of Illinois are taking advantage of the delayed launch of sports betting and have many Illinois residents crossing the border to make their wagers.
What is Live Betting?
Live Betting is a way for you to bet on the outcome of a game after the game has started. IN the past, once a game began, the betting on the winner came to an end. Now, sportsbooks get enough real-time data from their feeds that they can, if they want to, change the lines as the game progresses. This is a great way to double down on your team when they are down or to load up on a team if you are late to the book.
Can I still play at my offshore sportsbook now that betting is legal in Indiana?
The new Indiana law does not prevent you from playing at an offshore sportsbook. In fact, because these books are outside the legal jurisdiction and are not subject to taxation, they are being more aggressive than ever in trying to attract players. However, with the lack of regulation comes the lack of protection should something happen to your account. Between that and the tough time getting deposits and withdrawals approved, we don’t understand why anyone would choose an offshore sportsbook over a safe, regulated option.
Speaking of safety, who oversees the Indiana sports betting industry?
All gaming in Indiana, including the new retail and digital sportsbooks, falls under the watchful eyes of the Indiana Gaming Commission. They are the body you will reach out to if you have a dispute with a site that cannot be resolved directly.