A Blog About Online Gaming and Entertainment Regulations
Full Tilt Poker, PokerStars, and the U.S. Department of Justice announced today that PokerStars will acquire Full Tilt Poker’s assets in a transaction that ends the DOJ’s civil forfeiture case against Full Tilt. Both Full Tilt and PokerStars ran online poker sites in the U.S., and in 2011 the DOJ charged both of them with violating U.S. anti-gambling laws.
Jeff Ifrah, founding partner of Ifrah Law, was instrumental in negotiating this unusual three-way transaction. The following is a set of questions and answers with Mr. Ifrah about the path-breaking deal:
Question: Would you describe this as a unique case?
Answer: As attorney for Full Tilt, I found this to be the case of a lifetime. I don't know if John Grisham could have thought this one up. The problem was very complicated and required an understanding of the industry, the players and the U.S. government to help Full Tilt realize the best possible outcome under the circumstances. My firm and Full Tilt had... Read more
Delaware is now poised to become the second state to legalize online gaming. On Wednesday, that state’s Senate passed a bill that would legalize web table games, including poker, video lottery games, and traditional lottery games to be offered online. Democratic Governor Jack Markell supports the bill and is expected to sign it into law… Read More
It appeared for some time last year as if New Jersey was about to become the first state to legalize and regulate online gaming in the form of poker. But Republican Gov. Chris Christie vetoed state legislation to that effect, citing legal and constitutional concerns. Now, however, Christie has laid down the gauntlet to the… Read More
On February 7, 2012, the D.C. Council voted 10-2 to repeal the city’s iGaming program, which would have made the District of Columbia the first U.S. jurisdiction to permit the playing of online poker for money. In April 2011, the District had become the first U.S. jurisdiction to enact a law that permitted online poker… Read More
Mah Jong, the ancient Chinese tile-based table game, can now count itself as a winner in the old debate of games of skill vs. games of chance, according to a New York state judge, who recently ruled that the game demands more than luck. On January 4, 2012, Criminal Court Judge John H. Wilson declared… Read More
Arguably the most popular social media platform in the world, Facebook appears poised to expand its ever-growing empire into the online gaming industry. Rumors circulated in early December 2011 that Facebook was developing a platform for its United Kingdom users to gamble online for real money, perhaps even as soon as in the first quarter… Read More
On December 23, 2011, the U.S. Department of Justice revealed that it has reversed a long-held position by stating that the Wire Act applies only to sports betting. This marks a major change in policy for DOJ, which has long contended that the Wire Act prohibits all forms of Internet gambling, including poker. Late that… Read More
On Dec. 22, 2011, the Nevada Gaming Commission unanimously approved regulations drafted by the Nevada Gaming Control Board that could make Nevada the first state to provide online gambling within its borders. Earlier this year the Nevada state legislature passed legislation allowing for intrastate online gaming. In June, Governor Brian Sandoval, a former Nevada Gaming… Read More
On Nov. 18, 2011, the House Energy and Commerce Committee Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade held its second hearing on the legalization of online gaming. The subcommittee had held an initial hearing on the subject last month. The hearing began with an opening statement from subcommittee chair Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), who noted that… Read More
On Oct. 25, 2011, the possibility of legal online poker in the United States was aired before the House Energy and Commerce Committee subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade at a hearing entitled “Internet Gaming: Is There a Safe Bet?” The hearing was convened to discuss the “Internet Gambling, Prohibition, Poker Consumer Protection, and Strengthening… Read More