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New Hampshire Legislation Would Decriminalize Real-Money Online Poker

Proposal Calls For Removing I-Poker From Illegal Gambling Laws

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The state of New Hampshire has a new bill on the table that would allow online casino gambling, including poker.

House Bill No. 562 is a short three-page proposal, and in its current form doesn’t suggest the state is looking at licensing and regulating online gaming firms. The legislation would simply allow the activity for those within New Hampshire’s borders.

“This bill exempts gambling done over the internet from gambling offenses under RSA 647,” the legislation reads. “The Department of Justice to date has neither investigated nor prosecuted online gaming offenses and therefore does not expect this bill to have any impact on expenditures.”

In other words, the bill would remove the possibility of being arrested for playing poker over the internet. Washington State is grappling with a similar issue, though in that state a law was actually passed to explicitly criminalize online gaming.

The New Hampshire measure acknowledges potential effects to the state lottery.

“To the extent this bill legalizes a form of gambling, it may have an indeterminable impact on lottery and charitable gaming revenue,” the bill said.

Other states in the mix to legalize online poker this year include Michigan, Hawaii, New York, California, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.