Illinois begins sports betting licensing process

The US state of Illinois has begun its sports betting licensing process, after introducing emergency rules. This follows on from the vertical becoming legal in July 2019.

As a result of these interim rules, various licences can now be applied for. Along with sports wagering, there are also management service provider, supplier, official league supplier, and occupational ones.

More permanent laws coming into place soon

The emergency rules have been introduced to kick off the licensing process, but more permanent laws are being drafted. These will allow sports betting to become fully operational and are expected to come into force early next year.

Online licences are set to be capped at $20 million when full laws come into place. However, this isn’t mentioned for the emergency period.

Marcus Fruchter, Illinois Gaming Board Administrator, said: “Today’s release of applications and phase one rules is a significant step in the process the General Assembly and Governor Pritzker began earlier this year – the ethical and transparent implementation of sports wagering in Illinois.”

In addition to sports betting, six new casino licences will be made available. Four racetracks will also be able to obtain permits, while more betting terminals will be available statewide.

When speaking about implementing new laws in Illinois, Fruchter mentioned that they had observed other states where the vertical is legal. He added:

“Illinois Gaming Board staff used responses from the comment period to inform the rules and also derived best practices from states where sports wagering is already being conducted.

“This was to develop a regulatory framework and implementation process that are right for Illinois, and will protect public interests.”

iGaming coming to more US states in 2020 

Illinois will be joined by neighbouring Michigan in offering legal sports wagering next year, after the state signed its betting and gaming bills into law. Along with making a 2020 launch possible, legal frameworks for fantasy sports can now be drafted too.

Other states to recently legalise sports betting include Colorado and Oregon. It has been suggested that the US market will be worth over $190 billion by 2023 in this vertical.

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