Real-money internet casinos aren’t legal in the Golden State. Instead, only social and sweepstakes casinos are available in California.

The most popular options include:

  • Chumba Casino (sweepstakes)
  • Luckyland Slots (sweepstakes)
  • Big Fish Casino (social)
  • DoubleDown (social)
  • Slotomania (social)

Sweepstakes gaming sees you gamble coins in hopes of winning sweepstakes entries. These entries can lead to cash and other prizes.

Social casinos also involve risking coins through online casino games. Rather than playing for monetary prizes, though, you chase accolades and achievements (e.g., leveling up).

When will California Legalize Online Casinos?

CA politicians were once fixated on legalizing online poker. They introduced one or more bills every year from 2008 to 2015.

Lawmakers are currently interested in regulating California internet sports betting. State Sen. Bill Dodd unsuccessfully introduced online betting legislation in 2020.

Strangely enough, the Golden State isn’t intrigued by online casinos. Politicians have made no serious efforts to legalize internet gaming to date.

Online sports betting is taking precedent now. Internet casinos are likely on the backburner until the betting matter is settled.

Lawmakers need the following before they can get online betting and casinos approved:

  • Voters must amend the state constitution to allow for internet sports betting.
  • Tribal support (due to a gambling compact between California and state tribes).
  • Two-thirds majority support in the State Assembly and House.

Voters can only change the constitution during election years. Therefore, online sports gambling can’t become legal until 2022 at the earliest.

Again, we don’t envision anything happening with online casinos until internet betting is in place. Even online sports betting could be a long way off, though.

Most tribes want a monopoly over sports betting. They aren’t keen on allowing either online casinos or betting if racetracks and card rooms are involved.

The tribes carry major sway in the discussion. They collectively pay around $100 million to the state each year from casino winnings.

All things considered, we don’t envision California legalizing online casinos earlier than 2025. The state may not even regulate online gaming until 2030 or beyond.

Which Internet Casinos would Serve California?

If the Golden State does approve online casinos, it will draw no shortage of applicants. California features the largest population (over 39.5 million) and economy ($3.2 trillion) in the US.

Of course, the state is far from regulating internet casinos. When it does, the following gaming brands will likely be interested:

  • Betfair
  • BetMGM
  • Caesars Entertainment
  • DraftKings
  • FanDuel
  • Golden Nugget
  • Unibet
  • Virgin Casino

Potential CA Online Casino Games

With such a large potential market, California would boast a wide range of online casino games. Slots, blackjack, video poker, and more would be on the table.

California Online Slots

Slot machines are highly popular throughout California’s tribal casinos. They’d assuredly be the most attractive option at gaming sites, too.

Using other states for reference, each CA online casino would offer hundreds of online slots. Some might even be popular enough to feature over 1,000 internet slot machines.

Popular slots providers in other markets include Bally, High 5, IGT, NetEnt, and Williams Interactive (WMS). These developers—and others—would most likely provide internet slots to California.


Blackjack is by far the most popular table game in online markets. It’s available in multiple variations at many gaming sites.

Classic blackjack remains the most popular version among online players. It offers favorable rules (e.g., 3-to-2 natural blackjack payouts) that push the house edge to 0.5% or lower.

Unique variations include Blazing 7s, micro limit, and Zappit. The micro limit game is especially popular because it only requires $0.10 bets.

Other Table Games

Besides blackjack, other online table games that would probably be available in California include:

  • American roulette
  • Baccarat
  • Caribbean stud
  • Casino hold’em
  • Craps
  • European roulette
  • Let It Ride
  • Mississippi stud
  • Texas Hold’em Bonus Poker
  • Three-card poker

Video Poker

Game King is the majority video game supplier in every online market so far. It provides the following video poker games:

  • Bonus Poker
  • Double Bonus Poker
  • Double Double Bonus Poker
  • Five Play Draw Poker
  • Jacks or Better
  • Triple Play Draw Poker

Jacks or Better is the most favorable of these games in terms of RTP. It delivers 99.54% RTP when you use perfect strategy.

Live Dealer Casino Games

Live-dealer gaming doesn’t launch immediately in newly-regulated markets. However, it should eventually become available if California legalizes online gaming.

Most markets feature a bare minimum of live baccarat, blackjack, roulette, and three-card poker. Other states provide additional live-dealer games, such as Casino Hold’em, Dream Catcher, Ultimate Texas Hold’em, and Unlimited Blackjack.

How to Deposit at California Online Casinos

The CA gaming market would probably offer all—if not more—of the banking options available in other states. Likely online casino deposit methods featured at California gaming sites would include:

  • ACH: Send an e-check to a California gambling site.
  • Cash at the cage: Deposit in person at a CA land-based gaming establishment.
  • Credit card: Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover are available in many markets.
  • E-wallet: Use Neteller, PayPal, or Skrill to fund an account.
  • PayNearMe: Visit a local 7-Eleven or Family Dollar and deposit in person.
  • Play+ card: Online casinos can issue branded prepaid cards.

In most cases, you must use the same banking option for deposits and withdrawals. If you deposit with Skrill, for example, you need to cash out with Skrill, too.

Further, California online casinos would assuredly require you to verify your identity on the first withdrawal. This process would involve submitting a copy of your photo ID and, possibly, a recent utility bill.

Using California Online Casino Apps

Smartphones dominate the internet gaming world. CA online casinos would undoubtedly provide apps.

Looking at other markets, most gaming sites offer Android and iOS apps. The method for obtaining each app varies.

Here are the basics of downloading an Android casino app:

  • Google Play doesn’t allow real-money casino apps.
  • Therefore, you must visit a casino’s website directly and look for the Android icon.
  • After selecting the Android button, you simply follow the download instructions.

Here are the details behind downloading an iOS casino app:

  • The App Store allows real-money casino apps.
  • You can visit the App Store directly and search for the desired casino.
  • Download the app from the store.

What if There’s No App?

Some online casinos don’t offer apps for Android and/or iOS devices. In this case, they typically provide instant play.

The latter refers to online casino games offered through your browser rather than an app. Instant play offers a similar gaming experience to apps—only without the download involved.

Signing up at CA Online Casinos

California gaming sites would likely feature the same registration process as seen in other states. Other markets require casinos to ask for the following information:

  • Name
  • Email
  • Mailing address
  • Phone number
  • Date of birth
  • Bonus code (if applicable)
  • Username
  • Password

After completing the registration form, you’d need to agree to the casino’s terms and conditions and submit the application. Provided you’re of age, you’d receive instant approval.

California Online Casino Bonuses

Legal CA online casinos would surely deliver several different types of bonuses. You could look forward to the following deals in California:

  • Cashback: The casino gives you back a percentage of your losses over a specified period (e.g., one week).
  • Free spins: You receive free slots spins that you can turn into winnings.
  • Loyalty rewards: A gaming site offers you rewards based on your betting activity.
  • Match deposit bonus: The casino matches a percentage (usually 100%) of your deposit amount.
  • No-deposit bonus: You collect a bonus just for signing up at an online casino.

Of course, CA gaming sites wouldn’t just hand over the money right away. They’d make you earn bonus funds by satisfying terms and conditions.

Nevertheless, these bonuses would certainly be worthwhile. You can earn hundreds of dollars through some casino deals.

History of California Online Casinos

The Golden State is largely unreceptive to internet casinos. Many local tribes, which operate land-based casinos through a compact with the state, aren’t interested in iGaming.

Even tribes that are interested in the matter can’t launch online gaming without the government’s approval.

The Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel Tribe once opened an online bingo site called Desert Rose Bingo. It later added internet poker to Desert Rose as well.

The Santa Ysabel Tribe argued that it could legally operate online gaming on its sovereign lands. However, the state sued the tribe in 2018 and won in the Ninth District Court of Appeals.

The judge noted that the tribe made a valid argument about offering online gaming on sovereign land. However, it believed that the tribe violated state and national laws by offering bets outside of its lands.

No local tribes have challenged the online gaming status quo since then. CA internet casinos probably won’t be available until state politicians, tribes, racetracks, and card rooms can work out legislation.

FAQ on California Online Casino

Why hasn’t California legalized online casinos?

The Golden State features too many competing interests that aren’t on the same page. Some lawmakers are interested in regulating online betting, casinos, and/or poker.

However, CA card rooms, horse tracks, and tribes are at odds over who belongs in an internet gambling market.

The Golden State features too many competing interests that aren’t on the same page. Some lawmakers are interested in regulating online betting, casinos, and/or poker.

Would I need to live in California to play at online casinos?

No. California would only require you to be within state lines to gamble.

What’s the minimum online gambling age in California?

You must be 18 to gamble at land-based CA casinos, card rooms, and racetracks. This minimum age would probably apply to regulated internet gambling, too.

Would CA online casinos be safe?

Yes. The California Gambling Control Commission would likely preside over the state’s online gaming market.

Does California tax casino winnings?

The Golden State taxes casino winnings as income. Its state-income taxes range from 1% to 13.3% (the highest in the US) based on your annual income.

The same rule would likely apply to online casino winnings. You’d need to pay federal taxes (24%) on profits as well.