A Look At The Bitcoin Gambling Rules When Using Cryptocurrencies Country By Country

Can You Gamble Using Cryptocurrency In The US?

Gambling is a global hobby for many people and a career path for a few individuals who go on to become professional gamblers. It’s one of the most popular industries thanks to its big money enthusiasts and participants.

Winnings are usually taxed by the government because it’s categorized as personal income. This is one of the reasons many punters are beginning to wonder if they can wager with cryptocurrencies instead of traditional cash.

This is coming in the wake of cryptocurrency’s increased global acceptance and gambling services becoming increasingly accessible –thanks to the internet. Now that more people are buying into the crypto idea and are investing, they are becoming more inquisitive about the legitimacy of gambling with cryptos.

The good news is more states in the country are beginning to legalize online gambling. This is not surprising considering the significant tax revenues that gambling companies generate for states and the country as a whole. Based on this alone, it is very possible that online sports betting and casinos will be legalized in all states in the country.

Online Gambling Industry, Cryptocurrency, And Blockchain

Even as states are working on legislation for online sports betting and casinos, there’s another issue about the possibility of gambling with cryptocurrency. Many gamblers are seeking this option because cryptos afford them the benefit of anonymity and privacy.

So, instead of funding using regular means and going through the KYC process, gamblers like the idea of funding their online gambling accounts anonymously and withdrawing their winnings the same way.

This is all possible, thanks to blockchain, the technology powering cryptocurrencies. Blockchain is both immutable transparent and decentralized. At the moment, countries are still trying to decide where cryptocurrency fits in.

Many are devising regulations for cryptos, while others are just trying to figure it out. In all though, everyone recognizes its potential, even if they’re not sure about how to proceed with it.

It’s not just the countries though. Gambling outfits are worried about their usage and potential implications. However, this hasn’t stopped them from adding cryptocurrencies –bitcoin in particular- to their list of acceptable currencies.

There’s currently no provision for other cryptocurrencies. So, anyone looking to trade with bitcoin would have to first find gambling sites that accept bitcoin and use that for their bets.

Crypto And Gambling Legislation In Major Countries

Gambling legislation tends to differ across several countries. Which means their approval of cryptos for gambling purposes would vary according to their laws. In the UK, gambling laws are made and executed by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).

All resident gambling operations must have their licenses approved by the commission first before they can operate within the country’s shores. Once that’s done though, gambling companies are free to accept or refuse cryptos as a means of funding or withdrawal.

Unlike the UK where the laws and regulations are relaxed, even if within the purview of the UKGC, the laws in the US are very different. Legislation regarding online gambling is currently being drafted and formulated.

This means that there’s no general consensus on online sports betting activities. Currently, only four states have legalized online gambling in the US. In fact, online gambling activities are currently in their infancy within the country. As a result, those offering the service aren’t currently offering cryptos as a funding or withdrawal option.

In fact, current legislation in the form of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) clearly states that funding gambling accounts through electronic means is not allowed. This means, therefore, that while cryptos are allowed in the US, it’s just not an acceptable option for gambling at the moment.

In Australia and New Zealand, racing and sports gambling operators can open up shop –with approved licenses of course- while online casinos can’t. Courtesy of the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001 (IGA), it means that Australian residents can punt with service providers within or outside the borders.

The country also accommodates the use of cryptocurrencies for gambling purposes… to an extent. The only exception being the Northern Territory Racing Commission (NTRC) which has placed a ban on cryptocurrency related activities for residents within its region.

New Zealand’s gambling legislation is governed by the Gambling Act of 2003, which allows residents to use offshore gambling services. The use of cryptos by these services are at their discretion, but the country itself wouldn’t frown at any crypto related gambling activities.

Back to North America, Canada’s gambling laws are similar to that of Australia and New Zealand’s. Canadian residents and citizens can participate in online gambling activities using regular cash or cryptos. They can also use onshore and offshore gambling services.


Gambling operators are currently left to decide if the availability of cryptocurrency options for their users. As seen in the US, the legislation is still lacking and it might take a long time to get that going.

So, if you intend to use cryptos, make sure to seek out offshore services that allow cryptos and withdraw to your wallets. As a punter, you must make sure you’re familiar with gambling laws within your country of residence, before moving forward with anything. This way, you can stay on the good side of the law and avoid breaking the rules.


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