Underground Poker Rooms – Why Are They Illegal?
All around the world, illegal gambling is forbidden because it is unregulated and you don’t pay any taxes over your winnings. This is why people prefer to play, and they seek for such places and tables. If you take under consideration also the fact that poker is a game with either high or low stakes, it makes it perfect for making money.
There are many people hooked up with poker, and there are many great poker sites that offer the same services but digital. Most of the modern players, do prefer online casinos but the true high-stakes are usually in privately organised games with a handed pick wealthy gentlemen. Privacy means everything for famous and widely-known people. Here are the countries and continents where underground poker is available:
The laws about all private games are super controversial all around the world, even the United States of America has different rules about them in different states. For your convenience today we will tell you more about the underground poker rooms around the world and their legal state.
Underground Poker Games in Asia
In China, Macau and Hong-Kongs they strictly restrict the casual and informal underground poker clubs and tournaments. You can offer such services because poker is viral in China, especially Tractor Poker and Omaha, but only with the needed licences and taxes. In Japan poker games are also very popular, don’t forget that one of the World Poker champions is exactly from Japan.
Don’t leave with the impression that poker or gambling are legal because they are not. If you find a poker room that means that it is an illegal underground poker room run by Yakuza. In Singapore, gambling is strictly regulated, and when we speak about underground and private poker games, you are allowed to play such, if they are not outside and in front of the public. Of course, organising illegal poker rooms will get you arrested.
Underground Poker Games in Europe
Europe is a vast continent with many countries, and we won’t be able to go through all of them, but we will summerise the overall rules in different countries. We can divide them roughly in 3 sections because, in some European countries like Spain or Italy, poker is regulated. Meanwhile, in others like Bulgaria, Albania or Czech Republic it is either not regulated or in process or legislation. Most of the countries in the European Union are with either controlled or in the progress of poker regulations.
In many states, there is no diversification between casinos and poker rooms because poker is not that popular in some parts of the continent to have separated poker rooms. In other countries like Finland do apply taxes to all poker winning if they are generated in online platforms outside the EU. From an overall perspective in Europe, the countries allow you to organise private poker games since they are not in public places.
Underground Poker Games in Australia
In Australia, all gambling operations are regulated from land-based to online ones, including poker. There are plenty of land-based casinos and official poker rooms across the country that you can enter and play. Now regarding the poker underground, of course, private gaming is allowed but under several circumstances.
No gambling is allowed on public places. You can organise such games only in private properties. Meanwhile all motels, hotels and such are not falling in the legal zone. Also, collecting fees on private games is illegal and such games cannot be conducted for commercial purposes.
Are There underground Poker Clubs in the UK?
The UK is not falling behind at all, as we all know the United Kingdom has well-structured rules about everything and gambling especially since the UK Gambling Commission is one of the most respected casino authorities in the world. Gambling is heavily regulated in the UK, and since poker is part of it, the definite rules apply too.
It is a truth that nowadays most of the people prefer to do it in online casinos just because its way more accessible. Despite that fact, if you ask around in the large cities, you will probably find some private and secretive underground poker rooms but be careful because they could and probably will be illegal. Generally, you can meet at your house and play with your friends without doing anything illegal, but the line between private and an underground poker room is thin.
Underground Poker Rooms in the USA
Because the United States of America don’t have a common and identical vision of this matter, we will split the states into different groups based on the way they treat poker underground games and private poker games.
States With Legal Home Poker
We want to stress on one significant fact and that in some states it is legal to organise private poker games, but under specific circumstances like the lack of fees, the place must be a private one and all players must have equal chances of winning. We will always recommend you double-check the specific laws before you set up a poker session. Here is the list of states with legal home poker:
- North Dakota
There are several more state that you can still organise private games, but the social guidelines and rules are a bit ridiculous. In the below-mentioned states, you need to either prove that you have a relationship with some of the other players or to prove that you know each other outside the game. On the other side, in some states, poker is missing in general from the written laws or it is not considered as a game of skill.
States With Strictly Illegal Private Poker Games
In some of the states below are under stringent circumstances, you might be allowed to set up a private poker game, but from an overall perspective, it is illegal. But which cases could be excluded? Well, in some states, senior citizens housing facilities are allowed to play but with a maximum win of $5 per hand. In other states horse and hounds racing are legal but poker is not. In the third cases, you may need the permission of the local authorities if you want to organise poker games.
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
Molly`s Game – The Largest Illegal Poker Room
Illegal poker rooms still exist in many countries and places all around the world, but we cannot know much about them because the whole point of theirs is to be secretive and tax-free. Of course, we learn about them after they blow-up. This is the case with Molly Bloom and its remarkable life story that will take your breath. For a reason, they made a movie based on the storybook that she published. We already dedicated a whole article to Molly`s life and her rise and fall. But after all, this is the largest and most famous illegal poker room that became a public secret and then blew up.
Go Molly Go – Freestyle Ski Athlete
Molly grew up in a very competitive home with two brothers which made her a very strong or as she says “hard to kill” person. She started skiing as a kid, and she was more than determined to grow and raise as a professional. Then she was diagnosed with Rapid Onset Scoliosis, and she went trough 7h surgery where bones and other tissues were taken and replaced and fixed on her spine with a metal frame. Even though the doctors said that is no good for Molly to keep skiing, she never stopped.
There is nothing more potent than the determination and the power of will. She was 20 years old when she finally got into the US team on the Olympic games. Her hyper strong ambition to be one of the best led her to the moment she dreamed about. She knew the track well, and she knew that she got significant chances of top performance. Luck was not on her side that day, because, after a perfect first jump, she fell hard and never competed again. Bad luck of a small pine stick that unlocked the boot from the ski made her fly about 15-20 feet above the ground and fall on her back.
Molly Bloom AKA The Poker Princess
We forgot to mention that she graduated in Political Science at the University of Colorado with enough points to apply in law school like Harvard. After the fall she decided to postpone the law school and go to Los Angeles California and start a new life. It was hard until she made her mind and found out how to organise underground poker Games. At first, she was a shot dealer in a night club where she was met her second job as office assistant of a Hollywood staple that pretends to be rich. Not long after she started, he let her take care of his own private poker games each week or with other worlds, call the guys, set up the place, the drinks and let them in. This is where it all started.
Not long after she started to get acquainted with some of the most powerful, rich and famous people in the valley, from movie stars to multi-billionaires, they were all calling her and begging for a chair on their table. Her boss was falling in depts, and he decided to release her from her duties without realising that she holds the games on her behalf already. And that was exactly what happened, she overtook the game and became rich and powerful. Even the mafia tried to break her spirit by beating her and robbing her all saving in her own apartment.
Despite all the struggles in her life, Molly Bloom is an example of how determination and dedication can make you do anything, win anything and be the person you want. Her story is also an example of how no matter how bad your screw up, there is always room to fix it up.’
Here are the most frequently asked questions related to underground poker and illegal poker rooms that you can find on the web. For some of them, we might have a quick and easy answer, but if you want to elaborate in any subject, you should hit the inner link button, and you shall have it right away.