That fantasy football league you joined may be illegal

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HOUSTON, TX – September is here and undoubtedly your water cooler chatter has transitioned from summer vacation plans to football. With the NFL opening its season this weekend, that means millions of American’s will be glued to the TV watching their players and tallying points for their fantasy league.

Well, while you’re placing a few friendly bets with your buddy’s at work think about this, some states say fantasy football is technically illegal.

The laws differ from state to state, but Florida for example has basically banned it and participants who bet money could face misdemeanor charges. Maryland on the other hand passed a law in 2012 that legalizes all fantasy sports.

Federally, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 protects the fantasy leagues; they just want you to report your winnings to the IRS. What’s really helping the case for fantasy leagues in some states where gambling is illegal, is that the winner of a fantasy game is determined through skill, not chance, so it’s not technically gambling.

We’ll see how this plays out over the next couple years. Who knows, maybe fantasy football will become its own taxed industry!

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