Oregon Sports Betting

When the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to repeal the Professional Amateur SportsProtection Act (PASPA) on May 14, it opened the door for every state to offer legal sports betting is they so choose. However, this decision may not have the same impact in Oregon as it would in other states.

Oregon was one of four states exempt from PASPA when the law passed in 1992. The state already was partially grandfathered in because it already allowed sports betting in ’92, but despite the possibility, state legislators have taken no action to regulate the industry.

The Oregon Lottery ran an NFL parlay game titled Sports Action for 18 years before desisting the service in 2007 because the NCAA refuses to host championship basketball games in state’s that allow any form of sports gambling.

Oregon sports betting status

The Oregon Lottery remains one of the main proponents for reintroducing sports gambling. The lottery is developing a plan to introduce betting on virtual sports – a numbers game similar to Keno or Video Poker – beginning in 2019, with the hopes of introducing single-game betting by 2020.

The NCAA will take instances of sports betting on a case-by-case basis. Although the association supports federal regulation on the industry, on May 17, it suspended the policy prohibiting championship games in states that allow sports gambling, paving the way for Oregon to re-introduce its sports betting services.

There are currently 11 casinos in Oregon run by the state’s nine federally recognized tribes. Those casinos that run games such as slot machines, blackjack and other table games have the infrastructure necessary to run sports books and several tribes are on record stating that they would like to include those sports betting services. There are some tribes that still oppose the idea for business reasons.

However, there are hurdles to overcome for either the Lottery or tribal casinos to effectively lobby for sports gambling in Oregon. Namely, the status quo has been established since Oregon could have legalized sports gambling over the past couple of decades and declined to do so. The precedent established by the SCOTUS decision may influence state legislators, but legislators are taking a “wait-and-see” approach for now.

Sports Betting FAQ

When will sports betting be legal in Oregon?

There could be years of discussion amongst legislators and officials regarding whether the state wants to legalize and regulate sports gambling.

The Oregon Lottery plans for sports betting to be legalized by 2020, but there is no set date or legislation currently available to be voted upon.

Where can I place sports bets in Oregon?

Betting on single-game sporting events is not legal anywhere in Oregon yet.

How old do I have to be to bet in Oregon?

Oregon residents must be 18 to purchase lottery tickets or place bets at the state’s racetracks. They must be 21 to enter casinos and gamble. The 21-year-old limit will likely apply to sports betting.

Can I bet on my mobile device?

Betting from mobile devices will more than likely be available once sports betting is legal.

Which sports teams in Oregon can I bet on?

There are currently no restrictions regarding which Oregon-based teams patrons could bet on should it become legal in the state. The Portland Trailblazers are the only pro sports franchise among the four major leagues in Oregon. Bets will also likely be accepted on football and basketball contests at the University of Oregon and Oregon State University.

Who would oversee Oregon sports betting?

There is no overarching body created at the moment to oversee all sports betting in Oregon. That would leave the Oregon Lottery, Oregon Racing Commission and the individual tribes to respectively regulate the industry.

Can I get into trouble for placing bets with unregulated online sportsbooks before it’s legal in Oregon?

Yes, Oregon’s Penal Code makes illegal gambling a Class C Felony, punishable by up to five years in prison or a fine up to $125,000. However, there is no mention in the code of betting online, which is why no residents have been prosecuted for using offshore betting sites.