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Florida Online Sports Betting Is Live!
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Florida Online Sports Betting Is Live!

by Allyson ParkNovember 2, 2021

With no prior announcement or press release or anything whatsoever, the mobile Florida online sports betting industry has finally been launched in the state of Florida. 

Florida Online Sports Betting Live

On Monday, the Seminole Tribe and Hard Rock Sportsbook officially launched online sports betting statewide. Despite a lot of legal complications and other challenges, sports bettors who live in Florida are now allowed to legally can create and fund sports betting accounts and place sports bets with the Hard Rock Sportsbook app.

According to the Hard Rock Casino website, their news sports betting app is available for download on iPhones and Android phones, and Hard Rock Sportsbook is offering one $100 risk-free bet for new signups. The Seminole Tribe owns and operates seven casinos under the Hard Rock brand.

A couple of weeks ago, when October 15, the tentative launch date for Florida sports betting, came and went, nobody knew when the launch was going to happen, even though officials insisted that they were still on track for a “late fall” launch.

There are a couple of legal obstacles that previously stood and still do stand in the way of the Florida mobile sports betting launch.

There are a series of lawsuits that were filed around the Florida gambling compact. According to the Florida Phoenix, the suit was filed by West Flagler Associates, on behalf of Florida pari-mutuels, against Deb Haaland, Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior. It will determine the legality of online sports betting in the approved Florida gaming compact.

A second suit was filed in late September, also by West Flagler Associates. It is the second motion in the state for summary judgment and preliminary injunction to block the proposed November 15 launch of Florida online sports betting. The Florida lawsuit raises an IGRA challenge, but also raises violations of the Wire Act and the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006. 

The federal hearing for both of these lawsuits is scheduled for this Friday, November 5, and it was previously thought that the launch date for the sports betting industry would most likely be delayed until the results of the hearing. 

According to CBS Sports, the Seminole Tribe’s decision to launch online sports betting prior to the federal hearing may prove to be an unwise and costly decision. 

Daniel Wallach, principal at Wallach Legal, said,

“Jumping the gun in advance of a federal court hearing (directed to that very issue) will likely not go over well with the federal district court judge, particularly after it was represented in court papers that the launch would not be before November 15. That may prove to be another unforced error. We’ll see on Friday.”

Nobody really thought that Florida online sports betting would launch anytime soon, and especially not before the federal lawsuit hearing. However, the Seminole Tribe and Hard Rock Sportsbook surprised sports fans everywhere when they did just that. It might prove to be a painful mistake, but at least Florida bettors can now cast bets through the Hard Rock app.

Stay with USA Wager for more betting news from the industry!


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About The Author
Allyson Park
Allyson Park is a sports writer and media content creator at Knup Solutions. She covers a variety of sports, including football, soccer, basketball, and baseball. She is currently a student at Virginia Tech majoring in multimedia journalism and minoring in creative writing. Her favorite sports to watch are NFL football and women's soccer. After graduating, she hopes to enter the sports journalism industry and provide a unique angle and perspective on sports as a woman of color.