Playing Online poker as an American in 2017

Following Black Friday in 2011, PokerStars, Full Tilt and Absolute poker were prosecuted under US law. They were forced to shut their US operations down.

Currently, US players have far fewer options than most of the world when it comes to online poker. Despite this situation, several solid choices remained open for American players.

Regulated Sites Vs Unregulated sites

Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey

Beginning 2013, Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey have legalized and have regulated online poker with each having sites exclusively for in-state play. Because of this, the biggest names of the industry have re-entered the market (888poker / PokerStars) but major issues have arisen especially in terms of player liquidity. Since these sites have the limitation of being in-state, the player pool has been greatly diminished, the low numbers of which fail to attract more people resulting in low profits for players as well as low revenues for the online platform.

Rest of the US

Several sites decided to keep operating in the US after Black Friday despite stringent legislations on online gambling. The appetite of Americans for online poker did not abate even after Black Friday. Full Tilt and PokerStars enthusiast migrated to less known networks which enjoyed an impressive growth these past 5 years.

Thousands of US players play on these sites daily currently making them the flagship platforms for the US. Formerly less known, they now rank among the world’s largest online poker clients.

The 3 larger US poker sites are currently:

Betonline (Chico Network)

Ignition Casino (Formerly Bovada)

Americas Cards Room (Winning poker Network)

Several smaller sites are also offering poker to US players (Vietbet…)

Is it legal to play online poker as an American?

Federally speaking, American citizens playing online poker in the USA is NOT illegal, except in two states – Washington and Louisiana where it is explicitly illegal to be caught playing online (though there has been no known incident where individuals were indicted or prosecuted in any US jurisdiction). However, if you’re an American looking to play online poker in the USA, you should understand that online gaming lies in a legal gray area in many states.

Are Non regulated US Online poker sites safe?

US laws about online poker create a less than hospitable environment for both players and operators. Poker enthusiasts who play on US sites cannot claim any consumer protection from the US government. This doesn’t mean that these sites are operating without any regulation. All of these platforms are licensed outside of the US and these licenses grant players several guarantees in terms of game integrity and smooth payment processing. Nonetheless, players need to remain selective of which poker room to patronize and they should favor the largest and most trustworthy rooms.

What are the best US poker sites?

Players are looking for different experiences. Some will favor great software over softer games. Cash Games players and tournaments players also have different needs.

Moreover, in order to be able to maximize all promotions offered by the different sites, players must be willing to open an account on several clients.

For all of these reasons recommending only one site would be a mistake. We prefer to list the pros and cons of each option currently available to US players in this article.


MUST HAVE


betonline

Betonline

BetOnline Poker is one of the flagship poker rooms on the Chico Poker Network. The site is licensed in Curacao, Netherlands Antilles.

Pros:

  • Freerolls every hours
  • MTT Leaderboard Challenge or SNG challenge
  • Soft games
  • Bad beat jackpot: $100,000 (and growing) jackpot
  • BIG MTT overlays
  • Bitcoin deposits and withdrawals
  • New software
  • Mac poker client
  • Reliable Cashouts
  • Mac poker client available

Cons:

  • No withdrawals possible while a bonus is active
  • No Poker Tracker or Holdem Manager support without a hand converter. (Contact us if you need support regarding this issue)
  • No P2P transfers

First Deposit Welcome Package

  • $5,000 New Player Freeroll
  • 100% First Deposit Bonus up to $2,500

Exclusive deal with Somuchpoker Rewards Club

  • Exclusive points chase: Up to 25% monthly bonus

* In order participate in this promotion you need to be tagged under us and send us your username after creating your account
* Make sure to get in touch with us before making your first deposit.
* For more information, or to discuss your personal BetOnline deal please contact us here.

Join BetOnline via  Somuchpoker Rewards Club


americas-cardroom-logo

Pros:

  • Excellent software
  • Deposit $25 or more, and receive 20 cards each worth between $2 and $6 Tourney Bucks to be used in any of our Jackpot Poker Games
  • Multiple withdrawal options (checks, ewallets, debit card, bitcoin, cash transfers)
  • Bitcoin deposits and withdrawals available (typically less than 24 hour withdrawals up to 25k USD)
  • “The Beast” weekly cash game rake race
  • “Sit n Crush” weekly SNG leaderboard
  • The Cage: A multi-table time-based cash game with a $1,000+50 buy-in (satellites are available).
  • P2P transfers available
  • $540 Buy-In – $1,000,000 GTD “Winning Millions” ($200,000 GTD to first place finisher) tournaments run monthly.
  • The largest tournament guarantees available to American Poker players
  • Mac poker client available
  • 24/7 Phone, Live Chat, and Email support available
  • Compatible with Holdem Manager and PokerTracker

Cons:

  • Arguably one of the tougher US-friendly networks

First Deposit Welcome Package

  • $250 New Depositor Freeroll
  • Deposit $25 or more, and receive 20 cards each worth between $2 and $6 Tourney
  • 100% first deposit bonus up to $1,000 (60 days)

Exclusive deal with Somuchpoker Rewards Club

  • 27% Rakeback deal

* In order participate in this promotion you need to be tagged under us and send us your username after creating your account

* For more information, or to discuss your personal Americas Cardroom deal please contact us here

Join Americas Cardsroom  with a 27% Rakeback deal via  Somuchpoker Rewards Club


goodcasinos-ignition-logo

On August 9, 2016, Ignition Casino has acquired full ownership and proprietary rights of the Bovada poker business.

Pros:

  • First network to adopt Very likle the softest US facing site
  • Fast payouts (< 2 weeks for checks, <5 days for bitcoin)
  • Highest player Traffic of US facing sites: 1,250 cash player and 4,000 cash players at peak hours
  • Texas Hold’em and Pot-Limit Omaha  Cash Games from low stakes to the high stakes
  • Great action in Limit Hold’em and Omaha Hi-Lo
  • Fast Fold “Zoom” poker games from Microstakes to NL100
  • 100k Sunday Major typically hits 150k prize pool
  • Mad Monday: 10 tournaments with guaranteed prize pools between $10,000 and $100,000 are taking place every monday.
  • Mac friendly poker client
  • Great SNG offer with a large variety of format on offer: Double Stack, Turbo, Satellite, Double Up, Triple Up
  • Royal Flush and Bad Beat Bonus
  • Now accepting bitcoin deposits and withdraws.
  • No New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada.

Cons:

  • A maximum of 4 tables may be played simultaneously; this applies to both cash games and sit and goes
  • No P2P transfers
  • Anonymous tables. Users are labeled by numbers in tournaments and Cash games
  • Notes taken erase once player leaves table
  • Hand Histories only available for download for 7 days
  • Poker Tracker and Holdem Manager are not allowed and are not compatible
  • Only “legal” HUD available is Hold’em Indicator which is offering stats per session only

First Deposit Welcome Package

  • 100% First Deposit Bonus up to $1,000

Join Ignition Casino


ADDITIONAL OPTIONS


 The following networks are accepting American players and can be considered as safe but are only offering a limited action (Small Traffic):

  • Intertops Poker
Network: Horizon (formerly Revolution)
Skin: Intertops Poker
Website: intertops.eu/poker
License: Curacao, Netherland Antilles & Cyprus.
Deposit Bonus: 200% up to $1000
Rakeback: Contact us to discuss your private deal
  • Vietbet:
Network: Grand Poker Network
Skin: Vietbet
Website: vietbet.eu
License: Costa Rica
Rakeback: Contact us to discuss your private deal

MUST AVOID


The following websites have closed while still owning large amount of money to players:

  • Lock Poker
  • FullFlush Poker (Equity Network)

Carbon poker (Merge Gaming Network) is currently experiencing a decrease in traffic, and cashout issues. We recommend you to avoid this poker site.

 


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