Maine is one of the most recent states to legalize retail and online sports betting. Gov. Janet Mills signed LD 585 into law on May 2, 2022, officially legalizing statewide sports betting.
Although sports betting has been legalized in Maine, bettors will have to wait a little while longer to begin placing bets as regulators work to establish a framework for online and retail sports betting.
Here’s everything you need to know about online sports betting in Maine, including when it might launch, who will be able to bet, and more.
Recent News and Details About Sports Betting in Maine
- Maine passed legislation in May 2022 to legalize sports betting. Although it has yet to launch, residents and visitors will soon be able to bet at retail sportsbooks or by using online sports betting apps.
- LD 585, the bill that legalized sports betting, went into effect on Aug. 8, 2022 but it will likely take until 2023 for the associated rules to be sorted out and for sports betting to formally launch.
- Online sports betting is limited to the state’s four federally recognized Native American tribes — each of which is able to partner with one online sportsbook operator.
- While sports betting has only recently been legalized, daily fantasy sports (DFS) apps have been legal since 2017, when the state passed legislation to legalize and regulate these contests.
- Residents and visitors can also bet on horse races in Maine using online platforms such as TVG and TwinSpires.
Online Sports Betting in Maine: A Timeline
Legislators in Maine have made several attempts over the past few years to legalize online sports betting, and they were finally successful in 2022. Here’s a closer look at the timeline leading to the legalization of online sports betting in Maine:
- May 2, 2022: Gov. Janet Mills signs LD 585 into law, officially legalizing sports betting in Maine. This comes two years after Mills vetoed a bill legalizing sports betting over concerns that it would lead to betting on certain types of events.
- April 19, 2022: The amended version of LD 585 passes through the Senate. With the House agreeing to the changes, the bill will be sent to Gov. Mills for signing.
- April 14, 2022: The House advances a bill that gives Maine’s tribes exclusive rights to operate mobile sports betting.
- July 20, 2021: Both versions of LD 1352 stall out on the appropriations table as the Maine 2021 legislative session comes to an end.
- July 2, 2021: While LD 1352 was expected to be sent to Gov. Mills’ desk, it must now proceed through the appropriations table and be approved as fiscally sound before it can be sent to the governor for signing.
- June 23, 2021: The House approves LD 1352, which would legalize sports betting in Maine. The House will now prepare to send the bill to the governor for signing.
- June 1, 2021: The Maine Senate passes LD 1352 after debating the bill for a month. The bill will now move to the House of Representatives for approval. Sen. Louis Luchini refuses to vote in favor of this version of the bill because of concerns over tethering.
- April 9, 2021: Sen. Luchini proposes LD 1352 after the failure of LD 553. Luchini’s version of the bill does not require mobile sportsbooks to be tethered to in-state casinos.
- Feb. 11, 2020: The House of Representatives does not vote to override Mill’s veto, ending hopes to legalize sports betting in Maine in 2020.
- Feb. 6, 2020: The Senate votes to override the governor’s veto, and the House of Representatives now needs to vote to override the veto as well.
- Jan. 10, 2020: Gov. Mills vetoes LD 553, which would have legalized both retail and mobile sports betting.
How Do Maine Residents Feel About Sports Betting?
Given that Maine sports betting legalization was not put to a public vote, there is not much data about residents’ opinion on sports betting. However, as lawmakers have been working to legalize sports betting for several years and many states throughout the U.S. continue to legalize it, it’s likely that residents would support sports betting legalization and the additional revenue it would generate for the state.
Are Daily Fantasy Sports Apps Legal in Maine?
Daily fantasy sports apps let players build fantasy teams and compete against other users for cash and other prizes in daily and weekly contests. Because some states view these contests as games of skill and others consider them games of chance, DFS apps often operate in a legal gray area.
In Maine, daily fantasy sports apps have been legal for several years. Maine passed legislation in 2017 to legalize and regulate these contests, and the state’s Gambling Control Unit is responsible for regulating DFS apps. The minimum age to participate in these contests is 18, and users can get started by registering with a DFS platform such as DraftKings or FanDuel.
Maine Sports Betting FAQs
|Is online sports betting legal?||Yes|
|Is mobile sports betting legal?||Yes|
|Is betting legal at retail locations?||Yes|
|Minimum legal gambling age||21|
Editor’s Note: Information accurate as of July 2022.
When will sports betting launch in Maine?
Sports betting was legalized in Maine in May 2022, and the law goes into effect on Aug. 8, 2022. However, it may take up to a year or longer for regulators to establish rules and regulations for sports betting.
Will there be online sportsbooks in Maine?
Yes, both retail and online sports betting were included in the bill that was passed on May 2, 2022. Each of the state’s four federally recognized Native American tribes will be able to partner with one mobile sportsbook provider.
How old do I have to be to bet online in Maine?
You will have to be 21 or older to bet online in Maine. This also applies to betting at retail sportsbooks in Maine.
Will you need to be a resident of Maine to place bets online?
No, you won’t need to be a resident of Maine to place bets online. However, like other states with online sports betting, you will need to be located within state lines to place bets.
Who regulates the online sportsbooks in Maine?
The Gambling Control Unit within the Department of Public Safety will regulate online sportsbooks and sports betting in Maine.
Is it safe to use online sportsbook apps in Maine?
No, it is not safe to use online sportsbook apps in Maine, as there are not currently any licensed sports betting apps available in the state. However, this will change once Maine officially launches online sports betting.
Neighboring States That Legalized Sports Betting
Maine only shares a border with New Hampshire, which legalized sports betting in July 2019. New Hampshire launched mobile sports betting in 2020 through the DraftKings Sportsbook app, and there will be a selection of sports betting games available through the New Hampshire Lottery.