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Is Sports Betting Legal in North Carolina? Register at Betting Apps Mar. 1

Mitchell South

by Mitchell South in Sports Betting News

Updated Feb 23, 2024 · 10:40 AM PST

North Carolina Tar Heels college basketball player RJ Davis pointing blue jersey
Feb 13, 2024; Syracuse, New York, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels guard RJ Davis (4) reacts to a play against the Syracuse Orange during the first half at the JMA Wireless Dome. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
  • Sports betting is legal in North Carolina, but sportsbook apps have yet to launch.
  • Retail sportsbooks authorized in 2019 for in-person wagering, sports betting apps legalized in 2023.
  • Register with North Carolina sports betting apps starting Mar. 1 ahead of the Mar. 11 online launch date.

Since the repeal of PASPA in 2018, sports betting legalization has taken a checkered path through the US.

While in-person sports betting has been available across the Tar Heel State since 2021, North Carolina sports betting apps weren’t legalized until March 2023. One year later, online sportsbooks will launch on Mar. 11, and registration for betting apps can begin Mar. 1.

With the launch of North Carolina sportsbook apps just around the corner, get the latest info on how to register early along with additional details on how we got here.

Is Sports Betting Legal in North Carolina?

Yes, North Carolina sports betting is legal at retail sportsbooks after initially being legalized when Gov. Roy Cooper signed S 154 into law on July 26, 2019. In-person betting on Tribal Lands of  the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and the Catawba Indian Nation has been the only way to place a legal bet in the Tar Heel State since the first legal wager was placed in 2021.

Sports betting apps were legalized when Rep. Jason Saine’s bill HB 347 was passed on March 29, 2023. That crucial bill was signed into law by Gov. Cooper on June 14, 2023, paving the way for a launch of NC sportsbook apps.

While North Carolina sports betting apps have been legalized, they won’t officially become available until March 11, 2024 at noon ET. As per the sports betting bill, North Carolina had 12 months to launch sports betting apps, and the North Carolina Lottery Commission (NCLC) used most of that year-long window.

Thankfully, North Carolina sports betting apps will be legal and available to all 21+ customers in time for March Madness.

North Carolina Sports Betting App Laws

The sports betting catalog approved by the NCLC includes major leagues like NFL, MLB, NBA, and NHL, and even niche markets like table tennis or darts. College basketball and football will also be available to North Carolina sports bettors, unlike other states where special restrictions or even outright bans are placed on NCAA wagering.

Here are some key highlights for legal North Carolina sports betting apps when they launch in the coming weeks:

  • Up to 12 online sports betting licenses.
  • Up to eight additional retail sportsbook locations.
  • Legal sports betting age is 21+.
  • Online sports betting licenses cost $1 million for a five-year period, with an 18% sports betting tax rate.
  • Will go live on Monday, March 11, 2024 at noon ET.
  • Pari-mutuel wagering on horse racing included.
  • $2 million annually for gambling addiction and treatment services.
  • $1 million annually awarded to Division of Parks and Recreation for youth sports equipment.
  • $300,000 annually to athletic departments at seven state universities.
  • $1 million annually to Outdoor Heritage Advisory Council.

There are, however, some restrictions on marketing legal sports betting apps in North Carolina. No advertising, marketing, or branding can be distributed in media outlets, including social media. The laws also state “No operator shall contract for or purchase the right to name a Sports Facility or racetrack, or any physical locations within the sports facility or racetrack.”

North Carolina Sports Betting Partnerships

As per the North Carolina sports betting bill, applicants must have a partnership with a professional sports team, sports facility, NASCAR track, or PGA Tour golf course to be considered for licensing.

Here are some of the North Carolina sports betting apps going through the licensing process, along with the agreements they’ve signed.

North Carolina Sports Betting Apps Market Access Partnership
Bet365 North Carolina Charlotte Hornets
DraftKings North Carolina NASCAR
BetMGM North Carolina Charlotte Motor Speedway
FanDuel North Carolina PGA Tour
ESPN BET North Carolina Quail Hollow Club
Fanatics Sportsbook Carolina Hurricanes
Caesars Sportsbook North Carolina Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians
Underdog Sports McConnell Golf

The North Carolina sports betting apps listed in the table above are all expected to be ready to launch on day one.

The NCLC is currently going through the process of licensing these sportsbooks, with Sterl Carpenter (Deputy Executive Director of Gaming Compliance and Sports Betting) saying the applicants are progressing well towards licensure. A ninth applicant, Catawba Two Kings Casino, is not expected to be ready for the March 11 launch date.

Online Registration Can Start Mar. 1, Apps Launch Mar. 11

With North Carolina sports betting apps set to officially go live Monday, March 11, 2024 at 12pm ET, it appears as if NC sports bettors will get the opportunity to register early.

The NCLC has already stated “Licensed interactive sports wagering operators who hold certificates of compliance can begin registering players, creating accounts, and accepting deposits.” as of Friday, March 1.

Early registration windows typically come with limited-time bonuses offered at each authorized operator. While sportsbooks haven’t commented on any early signup opportunities, we’re watching closely to see if they start dishing out promos ahead of the March 11 launch date.

Keep it locked in here for any potential early registration bonus offers at North Carolina sports betting apps. With sportsbooks set to launch March 11 ahead of the start of March Madness on the 19th, you’ll want to be ready for all the action with as many promos as possible.

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