New York has had a very long and tenuous relationship with online poker. While on one hand the online poker landscape was changed forever when the district attorney of Southern New York Preet Bharara brought charges against PokerStars, Full Tilt and Absolute Poker/Ultimate Bet in what is now known as “Black Friday.” On the other hand, it was one of the same two states that asked the federal government to clarify what exactly constituted as illegal gambling in late 2001 and for further clarification as to the definition of the Wire Act.
These vacillations on both side of the issue have caused some sites to not want to offer games to those in New York, but some offshore gambling sites have decided that the situation is still good enough to offer games to those in the state of New York. Below is some quick information on the sites that still offer games to those in New York and the perks you can get for playing on those networks.
Chico Poker Network, headlined by BetOnline, has seen a fairly meteoric rise in its traffic over the past couple of months. This has made the network an intriguing possibility for many players as they offer good games, a Sit n’ Go leaderboard and many other promotions. While they don’t offer rakeback, players can take advantage of deposit and reload bonuses fairly regularly. This room is a good option for sit-n-go players and full ring cash game players as both are a fairly popular variant on the site. According to PokerScout.com the 7-day average is 850 players.
Chico Network also has a very good and active sportsbook, as well as an online casino option for players. Chico Network also offers great promotions for both the sportsbook and casino that allow players to easily supplement their win rates and take advantage of the quick withdrawals and payment processing available!
Grand Poker Network may be a new poker room, but their parent company has been around for a very long time. 5Dimes Group is one of the most trusted names in sports betting, and as such, their new poker room should be trusted without the fear that may come with newer, unproven sites. While the room is still growing, 50%+ rakeback and soft games are the hallmark of the room and it is a great opportunity for players to take advantage of.
On top of having access to everything that Winning Poker Network offers through its partnership with Grand Poker Network New York residents will also have access to the world-renowned sports book on 5Dimes. 5Dimes makes it exceptionally easy to move money from your poker account to sportsbook or casino depending on what you want most and where you feel your greatest edge is. You will still have access to the bitcoin deposits and withdrawals offered through Grand Poker network, so this means some of the quickest and easiest funding of accounts can be yours exceptionally easily, as outlined in our awesome guide on how to setup these deposits and withdrawals. Grand Poker Network offers one of the premiere sportsbooks and casinos available to US-based players.
To become a member at 5Dimes and get access to their casino, sportbook and poker clients, follow the link provided here.
Winning Poker Network, which consists of America’s Cardroom, Black Chip Poker, PokerHost, and True Poker is the largest network available to players from New York . Winning Poker Network has a full host of games running around the clock and features numerous innovative offerings that aren’t available on other US-friendly networks, such as huge rake races, Jackpot Poker and a clone of the award winning PokerStars VIP program. Winning Poker Network offers elite benefits which allows players to enjoy up to 65% effective rakeback, or a flat rakeback structure, with more casual players in mind, as well as many value-added promotions for cash games, tournament and sit-n-go players. Winning Poker Network is also a bitcoin friendly room, so players will be able to deposit and withdraw safely, quickly and effectively.. According to PokerScout.com the 7-day average is 1000 players, making it the second largest site available to US players and largest to New York based players.
If you would like to read a more in-depth explanation of all the great games you can find on Winning Poker Network which is made up of America's Cardroom, Black Chip Poker, PokerHost, True Poker and Ya Poker you should take a look at our reviews!
Players can expect no real difference in the payout times from New York than the rest of the states chronicled in our report. Winning Poker Network, Grand Poker Network and Chico Poker Network all have bitcoin withdrawal options that make payouts exceptionally fast. Other methods are also rather fast, but do take longer than the bitcoin option, hence are rather strong recommendation that you utilize crypto-currency. However they may be easier for some players as there is less middle-man work to deal with those options. No matter your choice these sites provide easy and safe options for payouts.
New York has some fairly favorable laws where players are concerned, which is good if you are playing online or in a live game. While illegal gambling is defined basically like every other state in that it covers pretty much every conceivable bet that could be placed. It is important to note that the law specifically says that skill doesn’t matter in assessing if something is illegal gambling or not. The fact it has this provision is a bit odd, because most states don’t bother writing this into the law, or at least not nearly as explicitly.
I did say that the laws were more favorable though, and to this point I have not demonstrated how that could possibly be true. That is where the second part comes into importance. There are no penalties for those who are involved in illegal gambling from a player’s perspective. This means that even if a player where to be caught playing online poker in New York, there is no penalties from doing it. This likely is why no one has ever been brought up on charges of playing poker online in New York, there is just no point in doing so, from a legal perspective. This should allow player to continue to play with little to no worry if they are from the state of New York.
New York has a rather odd relationship with illegal gambling in terms of operators. We are all familiar with the stories of the poker clubs in New York City, and there are still new stories about these clubs circulating on the internet. While it appears that these poker rooms are of dubious legality, it greatly depends on what exactly is happening inside the walls of these establishments. If poker is the primary game then there isn’t many laws against it. This was further solidified when Black Friday happened, as the Southern District Attorney of New York didn’t go after these sites using local or state laws, but instead federal laws that have since been reclassified and redefined. As such, the state for operators seems to be significantly friendlier than it was even 2 years ago.
These rules change a decent amount once you start introducing other types of gambling into the mix though. Bookmaking is treated much more harshly with limits of $5,000 being the bright line from the charge being minor or serious in nature. This is nothing compared to games of chance or lotteries though as any operator taking over $500 a day in wagers that fall under this definition facing very serious charges for their establishment. These limits are pretty harsh, but it also shouldn’t be that big of a surprise as there is a lot of legalized gambling in New York that these small operators would detract from. We will cover the different types of legalized gambling within the state of New York in a later section of this guide.
Once again another complicated answer to a seemingly easy question. New York has a certain fear attached to with regards to how online sites view it, because of Black Friday. The attorney that spearheaded the cases against the online sites that were indicted then was from the Southern District of New York. With that being said, as the Department of Justice has changed its definition of the Wire Act, some of these fears have subsided and operating within the state’s borders isn’t as much of a problem as it used to be. Some sites still decide to not to deal with the potential issue though and do not offer services. Luckily, there are a lot of great choices for players from New York still available and players will have no trouble finding any kind of games they are looking for.
This is a tricky state to predict, because there are not traditional casino powers at play in the state, but the tribal casinos do have a rather powerful lobbying force within the state government and the state itself tends to lean a bit more to the left. With that being said, there hasn’t been a lot of movement on the legalization of poker in the state of New York front and it likely will be a few more years before any significant progress is made as any prior bills submitted to the legislature have gone mostly without debate and were therefore symbolic in nature. New York is one of the states though that could very easily support a player pool as they have a fairly affluent population with a fairly large number of people living within their borders. So if something does begin to move, they would become a major player in the market and could change how things have been done up to this point.
Things are a little bit tricky when trying to answer this section accurately, because while 4 types of gambling are expressly legal in New York, the fifth type is much cloudier. Expressly legal in New York are tribal casinos, state lotteries, pari-mutual betting and racetracks. The cloudy area is with traditional casinos and if they actually exist in New York. One might say no, they don’t, but that is ignoring the actual racetracks then. The racetracks in New York, which are rather popular, have electronic gaming machines in them. This would appear to bridge the gap between just racetracks and traditional casinos. The thing is, these racetracks are not looked at in the same light as traditional casinos and they do like a lot of the live casinos games that players are used to when thinking of traditional casinos. In reality, these are small definitions that don’t actually have a major effect on the overall outlook of land based gaming in New York, but it is important for understanding the nature of gambling in the state.
If you are lucky enough to have another address in a nearby state, be it your business address, summer home, second apartment, family home, etc, you may have other online poker options available to you. Here are a list of the states that border Maryland and Professional Rakeback's review on each of them: Pennsylvania, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Ohio, New Jersey, Maryland, and Delaware.
Many New Yorkers are jet setters and travel all over the country, and the world. Thus, it would not surprise us if you, as a New Yorker, happen to have a secondary residence outside of the handful of states we just mentioned. But fear not, we have more information for you to gobble up. Take a look at our Online Poker Guide for US players which has data regarding real money play on all 50 states. From there you can easily find a poker site to play at, or zoom in and check out the options in any other state of the union.
Unfortunately many players across our country don't realize that they have options to play poker online. If you've found this information helpful, please take a moment to share it with your friends and family and thus help to grow the game that we all love so much.