The Legalities of Online Poker
To play online poker legally, you must be at least 18 years old, or the legal age for playing in your jurisdiction. Some poker sites will verify your age before you can start playing. You can also play for free or with a low stakes limit. However, you should be aware of the various legalities involved.
Free or low stakes games
If you’re a beginner and want to learn how to play poker, the best way to do so is to play low stakes online games for free. These games are designed for players who don’t intend to make big money. While these games are great for learning how to play the game, they don’t provide players with the kind of experience they need to win big. Instead, micro stakes games are the best option for people who want to play poker for real money.
Whether you prefer free or low stakes poker, you can play it at any time, wherever you like. This type of poker is becoming increasingly popular online, and is ideal for people who aren’t sure how much money they’re willing to invest in a game. Moreover, low stakes poker allows players to play a great volume of games and therefore increases the chances of winning money.
Legality of online poker in the U.S.
While the states of Nevada, Pennsylvania and West Virginia all have passed bills to legalize online poker, these laws have yet to go into effect. Connecticut, on the other hand, has passed legislation allowing online poker, but no virtual hands have yet been dealt. Regardless, legalizing online poker is a significant step forward for online poker supporters.
The UIGEA, or Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, passed by Congress in 2006, made online poker illegal in the U.S. Fortunately, some poker sites left the country when the law was passed, but most of them have been shut down in the United States. In 2011, the Department of Justice seized a few major poker sites, accusing them of money laundering and bank fraud. After the poker sites shut down, however, the legality of online poker in the U.S. was upheld by a federal judge. While the UIGEA’s provisions are vague, poker is considered a game of skill, not luck.
A recent Department of Justice document reverses this decision and states that “any gambling activity that crosses state lines is illegal.” While this decision does not apply to online poker, it is still an important step forward for online poker players.
Sign-up bonuses on online poker sites
Poker sites offer a number of incentives to new players. These incentives are usually free money that can be applied to your first deposit. The more you deposit, the larger your bonus will be. The best bonuses, though, are the first-time deposit welcome bonuses, which can reach $1,000. The only catch is that you can only withdraw your winnings after the bonus has been cleared.
To claim a sign-up bonus, sign up at the poker site of your choice and enter the promotional code. Many of these codes are made up of letters and numbers that must be entered in a certain field on the site when signing up. It’s important to enter the code correctly to receive the bonus. Another way is to use a download link that offers registration rewards at specific poker sites.
When playing poker, you should always remember to read the terms and conditions. Many sites attach a time limit to these bonuses. Failure to meet this limit forfeits your bonus.