South Carolina Sports Betting Laws
Sports wagering is not explicitly prohibited in South Carolina, though operating any sort of sportsbook or bookmaking enterprise is expressly forbidden by law pursuant to §16-19-130. All things considered, this is a positive boon for bettors, as it allows them to use offshore sports betting sites with relative impunity. Nearly all other forms of gambling are matter-of-factly forbidden in South Carolina. There is an operational state lottery, but there are no commercial or tribal casinos in the state, and the conservative government rarely broaches the subject of expanded gambling of any kind.
All that said, it appears that the state legislature is eager to change the SC gambling laws, as it hopes to capitalize off of sports wagering revenues and other gambling opportunities. To do this, the state must legalize sports wagering and do its best to attract the offshore action – or as much of it as possible – back into its local purview, where it can be regulated and taxed. To this end, there are currently three sports betting bills being considered in the South Carolina Congress.
HB 3409 and SB 57 are joint resolutions (i.e. the House and Senate versions of the same bill) that seek to legalize horse racing betting, casino gaming, and electronic slots and table game machines. Passage of these initiatives would constitute a fundamental change in SC’s political and social cultures, though it is unclear how likely these bills are to gain traction. SB 71 is a bill to create a “Gambling Study Committee” to explore any expanded gaming proposals in the state. The potential for the passage of this bill is similarly unclear.
The Legality Of Sports Betting In South Carolina
Land-based sports betting – from a bookmaking or operator standpoint – is expressly forbidden by SC law. Thus, there are no legal retail or domestic online sportsbooks in operation in the state. That said, it is important to remember that the law does not criminalize the individual for placing sports bets via any channels whatsoever, whether in person on online. The law focuses explicitly on bookies, not bettors.
In practical terms, even if the bills currently being considered to study and legalize sports wagering in SC fail to get any traction, you’ll still be able to legally, safely, and securely place bets at offshore sportsbooks. These legal betting sites (like Bovada and BetOnline, to name a few) have long offered odds to Gamecocks fans. Even if you’re not a South Carolina fan, though, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to wager on all kinds of professional and collegiate US teams, as well premier sports clubs from all over the world.
Where To Legally Bet On Sports In South Carolina
Unfortunately, if and when South Carolina legalizes sports betting within its borders, it isn’t immediately obvious where exactly the pastime would be offered. Right now, the only form of gambling that exists in a customer-facing capacity in SC is the state lottery. There are no commercial or tribal casinos, there are no pari-mutuel ticket counters at area racetracks, and there are no OTB simulcast venues.
It’s possible that sports wagering will bring other forms of legalized gambling with it, which would then lead to actual brick-and-mortar construction of appropriate betting lounges and the like. Barring that, however, sports wagering in the state could be limited to physical locales where lottery tickets are already sold and/or to virtual sportsbooks over the Internet. Regardless, it’s important to remember that you don’t actually have to wait to see how all this pans out – you can wager lawfully over the Internet right now, just as long as you stick with reputable offshore books.
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Legal Age To Bet On Sports In South Carolina
The legal age to wager on sports in South Carolina is currently 18 years old. As the state has no active casinos and no other age restrictions related to gambling (except for the lottery, which only requires players to be 18), you can safely use the age set by your offshore sportsbook of choice. All the top books set this age at 18.
That said, it is critical to note that you should never under any circumstances wager on sports at these sites under the age of 18. When it’s time to collect your payouts, you will have to prove your identity, which invariably includes your age information. If you’re discovered to have violated the site’s TOS by wagering underage, your account will be permanently banned and your entire bankroll – including winnings you’re actually owed – will be forfeited. Underage gambling is a losing proposition, guaranteed!
South Carolina Sports Betting FAQ's
Are Offshore Sportsbook Sites Safe To Use For SC Residents?
Indeed, they are! If you live in South Carolina and wish to safely, lawfully wager on pretty much any US or international sporting event, you can do so via any reputable offshore sports betting site. Signing up is free, and you can even join several different books in order to shop around for the best possible lines on any given matchup. While there are many options online there are only a few however that have remained honest to their members and have served them for over two decades. Those sites include Bovada, BetOnline, SportsBetting, and 5Dimes. All of them accept SC residents and all of them post odds for the Clemson Tigers and South Carolina Gamecocks.
Has Anyone Ever Been Arrested For Betting On Sports In South Carolina?
Nobody has ever gotten in trouble with the law for wagering on sports over the Internet in South Carolina. Given that several top-rated, popular online sportsbooks have been serving SC customers for the last three decades, you can be confident that participating is 100% legal, safe, and secure.
What Should I Do If My Bank Did Didn’t Process My Credit Or Debit Card Deposit?
If your card is rejected when you try to deposit into your online sportsbook account, don’t worry. Your card hasn’t been deactivated, and you aren’t in trouble. Thanks to the federal UIGEA law, banking institutions will sometimes automatically prevent sportsbook deposits. Should this happen, simply use a different card or try an alternate payment method, like cashier’s check, money order, or bank wire. Better yet, you can bypass banks altogether by using a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, which is accepted at all the major sportsbook operators.
Can I Wager On My iPhone Or Android In South Carolina?
Mobile betting is definitely possible in South Carolina, regardless of whether you’re an iPhone or Android user. As long as you have a modern mobile device (smartphone or tablet), you can enjoy a full, app-like, on-the-go betting experience simply by visiting your site of choice from your mobile browser. These small-screen-optimized mobile betting portals are great for quick odds browsing, and you can manage all aspects of your account quickly and easily. One of the best things about mobile betting at a top offshore book is that it isn’t geofenced, meaning that you can literally wager from absolutely anywhere you have a cellular or Wi-Fi Internet connection.
Do Legal South Carolina Online Sportsbooks Have Live In-Game Betting?
Absolutely. In fact, given the huge interest in live betting, no sportsbook worth its salt would ever omit such a sought-after feature. All of the top offshore books offer live betting across hundreds of daily games, and you can access these dynamic, real-time lines from your mobile device as easily as you can from your desktop computer. You can wager from your bedroom, living room, favorite sports bar, and even from the stands at The Cock Pit itself!
Can I Have More Than One Online Sportsbook Account In South Carolina?
Yes, you can sign up at as many different sports betting sites as you wish. In fact, this is considered by many professional bettors to be the single best thing you can do to increase your long-term bankroll. Having multiple accounts across different books lets you shop lines for the best odds on any given matchup, guaranteeing that you maximize your potential payouts. Each legal sports betting site in South Carolina you visit may have different odds posted for the same matchup so you will want to choose the ones with the lowest vig. That said, please be careful and make sure to only create one account per sportsbook. Duplicate accounts at the same book is a violation of these sites’ TOS and will result in your permanent banning and total funds confiscation.
Betting On Horse Racing In South Carolina
Horse racing of all types (steeplechase, harness, flat) and other equestrian disciplines have an extremely rich history in South Carolina. Unfortunately, there has not been commercially-available pari-mutuel horse racing betting in the state for many decades. The rules and regulations that govern horse racings – and that bar horse racing betting – are available in the South Carolina Code of Laws at §52-5-10 et seq.
Even though horse racing betting is not available at any in-state SC venues, you can still wager on all the pony action you can handle. That’s because, in addition to offering fully-fledged sportsbooks, the top offshore betting sites all have international racebooks featuring horse racing from around the country (and places like the UK and Australia) every day of the year.
The Status Of Daily Fantasy Sports In South Carolina
Despite the almost total lack of gambling opportunities in South Carolina, daily fantasy sports operators currently offer their full suites of paid-entry contests to SC residents. In 2016, SB 1093 was proposed, which would have formally legalized DFS contests and taxed them accordingly, but this legislation. However, because participating in paid DFS contests doesn’t exactly meet the typical definition of gambling, the pastime is still freely available in the state. Thus, DFS sites operate unregulated in SC. Both FanDuel and DraftKings – the major US DFS operators – accept residents from South Carolina.
Currently, there is no activity in the SC House or Senate to put forward any new DFS legislation. Further, the proposed sport wagering laws currently being considered by the state have no DFS-inclusive language to speak of. Nevertheless, the activity could conceivably be covered by such a general sports wagering law, should one pass. Perhaps DFS could be the entryway for South Carolina and other states for other types of legal betting sites.