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Can I bet on sports in Montana?

Montana has a long history with gambling and sports betting. In recent years, there have been significant changes to gambling laws in the state that impact sports betting. This article will provide an overview of the current legal status of sports betting in Montana and what options residents have for betting on sports legally.

Is sports betting legal in Montana?

Yes, sports betting is legal in Montana. In May 2020, Governor Steve Bullock signed a bill to officially legalize sports betting in the state. Prior to this bill being signed into law, sports betting was taking place in a legal gray area.

The new law provides for both retail and mobile sports betting options. Retail sportsbooks can be operated at licensed gambling facilities across the state. Mobile betting apps can also be offered by licensed operators.

While sports betting is now clearly legal, there are regulations in place. All sports betting in Montana must be conducted through the Montana State Lottery. This means the lottery oversees all regulatory aspects of sports wagering. Any entity that wishes to offer sports betting must be licensed by the state lottery.

Who can offer sports betting in Montana?

As mentioned, the Montana State Lottery regulates sports betting. Operators must be licensed by the lottery in order to take sports wagers legally. There are a few types of licenses available:

  • Lottery operators – Montana offers both multi-state and single-state lottery products. Licensed lottery operators can offer sports betting.
  • Licensed gambling businesses – This includes casinos, bars, restaurants, convenience stores, etc. that offer regulated gambling. These businesses can apply for a separate sports wagering operator license.
  • Mobile operators – Mobile sportsbooks require a separate license from the Montana Lottery. Applicants must partner with a licensed land-based gambling business.

In summary, the entities that are permitted to offer legal sports betting include:

  • Montana lottery retailers
  • Bars, restaurants and other businesses with gambling licenses
  • Casinos throughout the state
  • Mobile sportsbook operators approved by the lottery

Where can I place sports bets in Montana?

You have a few options for placing legal sports bets in Montana. Let’s look at the retail and mobile sports betting choices available.

Retail Sportsbooks

Licensed gambling businesses can apply to operate retail sportsbooks. These allow you to place bets in person. Retail sportsbooks will likely be found at:

  • Casinos
  • Bars
  • Convenience stores
  • Lottery retailers such as gas stations
  • Other licensed gambling establishments

Most casinos in Montana are expected to open retail sportsbooks. Major casinos that may offer sports betting include Northern Winz Casino, Gray Wolf Peak Casino, and Lucky Lil’s Casino. Many bars, restaurants, and lottery outlets will likely open sportsbooks over time as well.

Online Sportsbooks

In addition to retail sports betting, mobile and online sportsbooks will be available. Approved mobile operators can launch betting apps and sites in Montana.

Some potential mobile sportsbook operators include:

  • DraftKings Sportsbook
  • FanDuel Sportsbook
  • BetMGM
  • PointsBet
  • Caesars Sportsbook

Montana mobile betting apps should be available for both iOS and Android devices. You can place wagers anywhere within state lines. Mobile registration takes place online through the sportsbook site.

What sports can I bet on in Montana?

Montana gaming laws allow betting on professional, collegiate and international sporting events. This includes betting on:

  • Professional sports leagues such as the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS, PGA, NASCAR
  • College sports such as football, basketball, baseball, etc.
  • International competitions and events
  • Esports and competitive video gaming
  • Olympics and other sporting tournaments

While Montana laws do not prohibit wagering on college sports, some sportsbooks may choose to not offer these odds. Operators will set their own policies on college sports betting.

The Montana State Lottery will have oversight of approved betting events. But in general, most professional and collegiate sports and leagues will be allowed for wagering.

Common Sports Bets in Montana

Montana sportsbooks typically offer a variety of bet types. Some of the most common sports bets include:

  • Moneyline – Betting on which team will win straight up
  • Point spread – Betting on teams against a spread or handicap
  • Totals – Betting whether teams will go over or under a points total
  • Props – Betting on outcomes other than the final score
  • Futures – Betting on future events like championship winner
  • Parlays – Combining multiple picks into a single bet
  • Live betting – Wagering on in-game events in real-time

These traditional and exotic bet types will be available at licensed Montana sportsbooks. Each operator may offer some variety in the odds and lines they provide.

Are there any betting limits in Montana?

Montana sports betting laws do not define any specific betting limits that must be imposed. Retail and mobile operators are free to set their own minimum and maximum wager sizes.

Limits may vary between the different sportsbooks. Standard limits may look something like:

  • Minimum bet: $1-$5
  • Maximum bet: $500-$2,500

Lower minimums and higher maximums are likely for more prominent events like the Super Bowl or March Madness. Operators also typically have higher limits for in-person bets placed at retail sportsbooks.

Bettors can expect to see lower minimum bets and maximums that accommodate most recreational bettors. But betting limits are always subject to change at the operators’ discretion.

What are the tax rates on MT sports betting?

Gambling revenue in Montana is taxed at 15% in accordance with laws passed in 1987. The same 15% tax rate applies to sports betting revenue. This tax will be collected by the Montana Lottery.

Of the 15% tax collected, one third goes to the state general fund. The remaining two thirds are allocated to the Montana Acquisition and Management Trust Funds. This supports public land access projects.

For operators, taxes are imposed on their gross revenue or net sports betting proceeds. Allowable deductions that can be taken from gross revenue include customer winnings payouts and federal excise taxes.

Montana’s 15% tax rate is competitive with other states that allow legal sports betting. Nevada, New Jersey, and Rhode Island also tax regulated sports betting at similar rates.

Is mobile registration required in Montana?

Yes, mobile registration is required to bet via online sportsbooks in Montana. There is no option to register in person at a casino or retail location.

To use a Montana betting site or app, you must complete registration online. This involves providing:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Date of birth
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Last 4 digits of SSN

You will also need to create a username/password and enter a deposit method to fund your account. Approval is usually immediate after submitting registration details.

Mobile registration allows you to place bets online from anywhere in Montana. You don’t need to visit a retail sportsbook location for any part of the registration process.

Do I have to be a Montana resident?

No, you do not need to be a permanent Montana resident to bet sports in the state. Both residents and non-residents can legally use MT sportsbooks as long as you are physically located within state lines when betting.

When you register for a mobile sportsbook, you simply need to provide a US address. This allows geolocation services to confirm you are within the state anytime you access the betting app or site.

Tourists visiting Montana cities like Billings, Missoula, or Bozeman have access to the same online and retail sports betting options as state residents. You just need to register an account during your trip.

Can I bet using a sportsbook app?

Yes, you can bet via mobile apps from licensed operators in Montana. The state gaming laws provide for both online and mobile sports betting.

Download a Montana sportsbook app directly from the operator website. Major app stores like the App Store and Google Play do not host real money gambling apps. Once downloaded, the app allows mobile wagering from anywhere in Montana.

Betting apps use geolocation to confirm your location. As long as you are within state lines, you can use the app to:

  • Register for an account
  • Deposit funds
  • Place bets on sporting events
  • Watch live game streams
  • Withdraw winnings

Mobile betting brings convenience to MT sports gamblers. Sportsbook apps provide a great betting experience right from your phone or tablet.

Do I have to visit a casino to register?

No, there are no in-person registration requirements in Montana. You can register completely online for both retail and mobile sportsbooks.

Online registration makes the process quick and convenient. To register for a Montana sportsbook online, you simply need to:

  1. Visit the sportsbook website
  2. Enter your personal info
  3. Deposit funds if required
  4. Verify your email

Once registered, you can place bets directly from the website. If using a mobile app, you can download right from the site and login using your new account details.

No trip to your local casino or racetrack is necessary. The entire registration process is handled online in just minutes.

What types of promotions are offered?

Sportsbooks typically offer new players signup promotions in Montana. Popular examples include:

  • Risk-free bet – Get refunded if your first wager loses
  • Deposit match – Receive a matched deposit bonus up to a certain amount
  • Free bets – Awarded site credit to use on bets

Operators also provide ongoing sports betting promotions, such as:

  • Odds boosts – Get enhanced payouts on certain bets
  • Profit boosts – Increase potential winnings by a given percentage
  • Parlay insurance – Refund if your parlay loses by 1 leg
  • Referral bonuses – Get site credit for referring friends

Check each Montana sportsbook for full details on available promotions. Terms and conditions will apply.

Are fantasy sports legal in Montana?

Yes, fantasy sports contests are legal and regulated in Montana. Legislation to authorize fantasy sports was passed in May 2019.

Contests now offered include popular formats like:

  • Daily fantasy sports
  • Season-long fantasy leagues
  • Survivor pools
  • Best lineup contests

To offer paid fantasy sports, operators must be licensed by the state. Approved operators can provide online and mobile platforms to players in Montana.

If playing for money, participants must be at least 18 years old. No age verification is required for free fantasy contests.

Fantasy sports are legal under both state and federal laws. Brands like DraftKings, FanDuel, Yahoo and ESPN operate in Montana currently.

What pari-mutuel horse race betting is allowed?

Pari-mutuel wagering on horse races is overseen by the Montana Board of Horse Racing. There are five licensed horse racing tracks in Montana that host live racing and simulcast wagering.

You can place legal pari-mutuel bets on horse races at:

  • Montana ExpoPark (Great Falls)
  • MetraPark (Billings)
  • Miles City Community Center (Miles City)
  • MIS (Montana State Fair – Great Falls)
  • Hamilton Fairgrounds (Hamilton)

These locations all offer simulcast betting from major horse tracks around the US and globally. You can bet on races at places like Churchill Downs, Santa Anita Park and Royal Ascot.

Montana does not permit advance deposit wagering. There are currently no legal online or mobile horse race betting apps in the state.

Are there resources for responsible gambling?

Yes, there are resources available for Montana residents who need assistance with problem gambling issues:

  • The Montana Council on Problem Gambling operates a 24/7 confidential helpline at 1-800-322-7066.
  • State-supported outpatient treatment is provided for problem gamblers. Contact the Montana Chemical Dependency Center for information.
  • Gamblers Anonymous holds local support group meetings in cities and towns across Montana. Meetings can be found on the Gamblers Anonymous website.
  • Most sportsbooks and casinos have responsible gambling policies and provide self-exclusion options for customers.

If you or someone you know has issues with compulsive or problem gambling, seek help from one of the above resources.


Sports betting is now clearly legal in Big Sky Country. Montana moved quickly to allow single-game wagering after PASPA was repealed in 2018.

Bettors can place wagers through lottery retailers, casinos, bars & restaurants and online sportsbooks. With both retail and mobile options, access to sports betting is widespread across the state.

Montana taxes sports betting revenue at a reasonable 15% rate. This competitive tax structure should help the industry thrive in the state. Between retail and online sportsbooks, there are plenty of easy options for betting on your favorite sports from Montana.