Sports betting in Florida has been a roller coaster ride in recent years, with legal challenges and setbacks halting progress on multiple occasions. However, there is finally some good news for Florida sports bettors, as the U.S. Supreme Court recently unblocked a lower court decision in favor of online sports betting in the state.
This means that the Seminole Tribe of Florida could soon be able to launch its Hard Rock Sportsbook app, which would allow Floridians to place online sports bets from anywhere in the state. However, there are still a few hurdles that need to be cleared before that can happen.
Soon, Florida Panthers fans will be able to bet on their favorite team from their home state.
What’s the latest on Florida sports betting?
On June 30, 2023, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled that a gambling compact between the Seminole Tribe of Florida and the state of Florida is legal. This compact allows the tribe to offer sports betting at its casinos and online throughout the state.
However, a group of pari-mutuel companies challenged the compact in court, and in November 2021, a federal judge ruled in their favor. This ruling blocked the launch of Hard Rock Sportsbook, which was originally scheduled for November 2021.
The Seminole Tribe appealed the ruling, and on October 25, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court lifted a temporary hold on the case. This means that the case will now go back to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, which will likely uphold its original ruling.
Once the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals rules, the Seminole Tribe will need to negotiate a new compact with the state of Florida that addresses the concerns of the pari-mutuel companies. Once a new compact is in place, Governor Ron DeSantis will need to approve it, and then the Hard Rock Sportsbook app can be launched.
In the meantime, for Panthers fans up North who haven’t made their seasonal move to Florida yet, here is how to start playing online in Ontario.
What to expect from Florida sports betting
If and when Florida sports betting does launch, it is expected to be one of the largest and most lucrative sports betting markets in the United States. Florida is home to over 21 million people, and it is a major tourist destination. This means that there is a large potential pool of customers for sportsbooks.
In addition, Florida has a number of professional sports teams, including the Florida Panthers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Miami Dolphins, Miami Heat, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Tampa Bay Rays. This will give Florida sports bettors a wide range of betting options.
When will Florida sports betting launch?
It is difficult to say for sure when Florida sports betting will launch. However, it is possible that it could happen as early as December 2023. This is because the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals is expected to rule on the Seminole Tribe’s appeal by the end of November 2023.
Once the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals rules, the Seminole Tribe will need to negotiate a new compact with the state of Florida. This process could take a few weeks or even a few months. However, once a new compact is in place and Governor DeSantis approves it, the Hard Rock Sportsbook app can be launched immediately.
Tips for Florida sports bettors
If you are a Florida resident who is interested in sports betting, there are a few things you should keep in mind:
- When Florida sports betting does launch, the only place to bet legally online will be through the Hard Rock Sportsbook app.
- You will need to be at least 21 years old and physically located in Florida to place a bet.
- There will be a minimum bet amount and a maximum bet amount for each event.
- You will be able to bet on a wide range of sports, including football, basketball, baseball, hockey, soccer, and more.
- You will also be able to bet on a variety of different bet types, including moneyline, spread, and totals bets.
The latest news on Florida sports betting is encouraging, and it is possible that Floridians will be able to place online sports bets as early as December 2023. When that happens, it will be a major milestone for the state and for sports bettors in Florida.