The revised opinion by the United States Department of Justice regarding the Wire Act has many gaming stakeholders up in arms. So much so, that legal challenges have begun against the decision. The latest group to challenge the opinion is the iDEA Growth trade association. This group is in support of expanding regulated online gaming the nation.
Last year, a request was submitted by the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice to see the 2011 ruling of the Wire Act reconsidered. The 2011 ruling was what paved the way for online gambling in the United States. Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada have been offering iGaming since 2013 because of the 2011 ruling.
Last month, the revised opinion was released to the public, issued by the Assistant Attorney General for Office of Legal Counsel, Stephen Engel. The new opinion prohibits all forms of interstate gambling, not just sports betting. This decision will affect online lottery gaming as well as online poker in Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey.
Because of this change, several lawsuits have been filed against the DOJ. The first was in New Hampshire. The iDEA Growth group filed their lawsuit this week in New Hampshire’s District Court.
According to iGamingbusiness.com…
Ifrah Law will be representing iDEA Growth. Lead attorney on the case, Jeff Ifrah, commented: “We trust that the New Hampshire Court will give appropriate weight to judicial precedent over political factors in making its decision, a decision sure to have a major impact on a fast-growing industry poised to offer significant economic benefits to states across the country.”
“The January 14, 2019, opinion glosses over case law precedent and largely ignores the legislative history that accompanied the Wire Act, which supports the original 2011 Memo.”
Make the Changes:
When the Wire Act revised opinion was announced, the DOJ then set a 90 day time frame for online gambling firms to make the appropriate changes. The time frame was set to give operators time to alter policies and practices to be in compliance with their latest stance regarding the Wire Act.