Is Sports Betting Legal in Texas? – Latest News and Updates

Many TX sports bettors want to know, is sports betting legal in Texas? The Lone Star State has not legalized sports gambling and doesn’t feature regulated sportsbooks. However, you can still find Texas sports betting through offshore sites.

Our Techopedia team will cover the legalities of sports betting in Texas below. We’ll go through recent TX sports gambling updates and legislative efforts. Before reading about these legalities and other info, you might consider the following TX sportsbook because it’s our top pick.

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Texas Sports Betting Updates

State lawmakers have tried legalizing Texas sports betting within the past few years. The following timeline shows notable events involving sports betting in Texas.

  • Nov. 7, 2023: Billionaire Mark Cuban announces his support for TX casino resorts.
  • May 25, 2023: The 2023 legislative session wraps up, marking yet another year without legal sports betting in Texas.
  • May 13, 2023: Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announces that sports gambling legislation will not receive a Senate vote due to lacking support among senators.
  • May 11, 2023: The state House approves HB 1942 by an 82-51 margin.
  • May 10, 2023: The state House passes HJR 102 by a vote of 97-44.
  • April 13, 2023: Texas’ 11 professional sports franchises announce their support for land-based and online sports betting in Texas.
  • Feb. 6, 2023: Rep. Jeff Leach introduces HJR 102 and HB 1942 to the TX legislature. HJR 102 would amend the state constitution to permit online sports betting in Texas, while HB 1942 would legalize online TX sportsbooks.
  • Jan. 15, 2023: Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones voices his support for legal Texas sports betting.
  • Nov. 17, 2022: State Sen. Carol Alvarado files casino and sports betting legislation called SRJ 17.
  • May 31, 2021: The legislative session ends with no commitment to legalizing sports gambling.
  • Feb. 2021: Betting sites, Texas pro sports teams, and lobbyists form the Sports Betting Alliance, pledging to fight for legal TX sportsbooks.

Latest Texas Sports Betting Info

  • Legal age for sports betting: N/A
  • Legalized: No
  • Retail sports betting: No
  • Online sports betting: No (Offshore sportsbooks only)
  • Daily fantasy sports: No
  • Horse racing: Legal since 1987
  • Lottery: Legal since 1991

Is Online Sports Betting Legal in Texas?

No. The state legislature has not passed any sports gambling bills to date. Most Texas sports betting legislation that’s introduced never makes it out of committee hearings.

However, HB 1942 and HJR 102 garnered serious attention from lawmakers. These bills even passed the House before fizzling out due to Lt. Gov. Patrick’s opposition. The state legislature meets every two years, meaning politicians can revisit the topic of is sports betting legal in Texas in 2025.

Until then, unregulated Texas online sports betting is the only option for local bettors. The best Texas online sportsbooks hold licensing in one or more other jurisdictions and boast solid reputations.

Options for Texas Sports Betting Apps

Are sports betting apps legal in Texas? No, sportsbook apps are not legal in the Lone Star State. The Google Play Store and App Store will not host unregulated apps either. That said, you will not find the best sports betting app in Texas.

Lawmakers have included mobile wagering in proposed bills. If Texas sports betting online did become legal, you could enjoy certain benefits from using mobile sportsbooks. Sports betting apps in Texas would provide security, fast payouts, traditional banking options (e.g., PayPal), and reputability.

Latest Texas Gambling Laws and Bills

If you’re wondering is sports betting legal in Texas, no associated legislation has passed to legalize it yet. But as shown below, lawmakers have been very active on the Texas gambling bill front. Here is recent legislation involving TX sportsbooks:

  • HB 1942 (2023) – This bill would have regulated land-based and online sports betting in Texas, creating the framework for fees, taxes, and available licenses. It passed the state House but got blocked by Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick before reaching the Senate.
  • HJR 102 (2023) – Legislation that would have amended the Texas Constitution to allow for sports gambling. It met the same fate as HB 1942.
  • SRJ (2022) – An all-encompassing Texas gambling bill that called for casino gaming and sports wagering.
  • HJR 97 (2021) – A constitutional amendment proposal to lift the Texas sports betting ban and give the legislature power to legalize it. This legislation never made it out of the House Committee on State Affairs.
  • HB 1121 (2021) – Much like HB 1942, this bill would’ve provided the framework for sports betting in Texas, including licensing parameters, fees, and taxes. HB 1121 did not advance beyond the House Committee on State Affairs.
  • SB 736 (2021) – Similar to the legislation above, except that it came from the Senate. SB 736 never made it out of the Senate Committee on Business & Commerce.
  • HB 1275 (1275) – A bill that sought to create a regulated Texas sports betting market, including fees, taxes, and licensing procedures. HB 1275 failed to advance past the House Committee on Licensing & Administrative Procedures.

Who Can Partake in Texas Sports Betting?

If you have been asking is sports betting legal in Texas, you might also wonder who can place wagers in this state. Again, TX lawmakers have not legalized sports wagering. If they do, though, the following qualifications would likely apply when considering other states with regulated sportsbooks.

21+ Minimum Age for Texas Sports Betting

Most states require you to be at least 21 years old to place sports bets. A few outliers that permit bettors aged 18+ exist, including Montana, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. However, the Lone Star State’s minimum age would probably be 21+ for regulated sportsbooks, or any online gambling site in Texas.

Verification Requirements

Regulated Texas sports betting sites would verify your identity before letting you deposit and place wagers. You complete verification by entering your full name, address, email, date of birth, and last four SSN digits during registration. Depending upon the state and sportsbook, you may need to upload a photo ID before withdrawing funds.

Bet within State Borders

The Texas online sports betting market would ring-fence its market just like any other state. Therefore, regulated TX betting sites would need to ensure that bettors are within state boundaries before accepting wagers. You might have to download GeoComply in this case, allowing Texas sports betting sites to verify your location.

Tax on Texas Sports Betting Winnings

There is no tax on Texas gambling winnings—only the standard 24% federal tax rate. That said, you would not have to pay state taxes on sports betting winnings. The only way this could change is if lawmakers made different rules for Texas sports betting versus other types of gambling.

Sports to Bet On

We have covered the topic of is sports betting legal in Texas, ultimately explaining that it is not currently legal. If TX sports gambling does gain legality, though, you will likely be able to bet on the following sports.

NFL

Texas is one of the most football-obsessed states in the US. Not surprisingly, the NFL is very popular here and would be a huge draw at Texas online sports betting sites. The Dallas Cowboys are one of the most-storied franchises in NFL history, winning two Super Bowls (1971, 1977) while becoming an iconic national brand. The Houston Texans have also enjoyed some successful campaigns since joining the league in 2002.

NBA

The NBA is the second most-popular pro sports league in Texas. This state features the San Antonio Spurs, Dallas Mavericks, and Houston Rockets. San Antonio has enjoyed the most success among this group, winning five NBA championships (1999, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2014). However, all three teams are relatively popular and would draw serious action in a Texas sports betting market.

MLB

Baseball has become more notable in this state due to recent successes by the Houston Astros and Texas Rangers. The Astros won World Series titles in 2017 and 2022, while the Rangers captured their first World Series victory in 2023.

NHL

Texas seems like an unlikely hockey destination due to its average annual temperature of 65 degrees. Nevertheless, the Dallas Stars have enjoyed plenty of fanfare here after moving to this state in 1993. They won the Stanley Cup in 1999 and own several division wins and conference championships.

UFC

The UFC does pretty well in most states, with Texas being no exception. The Lone Star State has produced some top-level UFC fighters, including Derrick Lewis, Lauren Murphy, and Alex Morono. Mixed martial arts would certainly fare well in Texas online sports betting.

College Sports

Assuming Texas permitted college sports betting as part of its market, it would be a hotbed for this type of wagering. It’s home to 25 Division 1 universities, ranking second only to California (26). Notable D-1 schools in this state include Baylor, Houston, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M, and Texas Tech.

Other Sports

Soccer could potentially thrive in the “other” category at Texas sports betting sites. After all, the Lone Star State is home to Austin FC, Houston Dynamo, FC Dallas, and Houston Dash. Cricket might even draw attention here thanks to the Texas Super Kings pro cricket team. Other notable sports for betting purposes could include boxing, golf, NASCAR, and tennis.

Other Types of Gambling in Texas

While Texas sports betting may not be legal, other types of gambling are. You can find out what is and isn’t available below, as we cover land-based casinos, retail sportsbooks, poker, the lottery, fantasy sports, esports, and online casino gambling in Texas.

Types of Gambling Regulated Legalized
Land-based casinos and sportsbooks Yes (tribal only) 1995 (tribal compacts)
Online casino sites and apps No N/A
Online poker No N/A
Lottery Yes 1991
Politics No N/A
Fantasy sports No N/A
Esports No N/A
Card rooms No N/A

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Jeremy Olson

Jeremy has been writing about gambling since 2004, when he began covering poker and casino games. He has since written and ghostwritten thousands of pieces involving casino games, poker, and sports betting. While he's covered strategy and news in the past, his key areas of focus today include how-to pieces, promotions, and reviews. Jeremy has also written for BasketballInsiders, Gambling.com, OnlineUnitedStatesCasinos, and Props.com.