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Old 04-28-05, 03:22 PM
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Exclamation hosting tourneys illegal?

I am planning on hosting a tournament for roughly 20-30 players with a $60 buyin with a $30 buyback in texas hold'em. Winner gets $1000 2nd gets $200 and Third gets $90. Of course I would pocket the remaining buybacks, for hosting and getting people interested.
If anybody has an idea of the legality of the situation please post a message.
Old 04-28-05, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Unregistered
Of course I would pocket the remaining buybacks, for hosting and getting people interested.
Of course you pocket the rebuys? You better make that clear to players cause that is a lot of overhead.

I am no lawyer but I think it sounds more legit if you charge a door fee and keep that for food and drinks or whatever overhead you have. I would put the rebuy money in the prize pot, just to be safe.

Rule of thumb: If you're in this to make money you're on thin ice.
Old 04-28-05, 05:02 PM
deekay140 deekay140 is offline
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 20
depends on what state you live in, but most likely is illegal.
Old 04-28-05, 05:33 PM
Iceman37 Iceman37 is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Pittsburgh area, PA
Posts: 18
For what it's worth...

...I POSITIVELY guarantee you this is illegal, particularly in Texas.

That being said, it's done every day of the week, particularly in Texas.

But know you're in dutch if you get caught...and try to get players who aren't going to whine when they lose, if that's even possible. It's whiny-assed players who bring down good poker games.
Old 04-28-05, 10:11 PM
Charlie Fu
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You can do what ever you want...

But that doesn't mean you won't go to jail for it.
Having a for profit poker game (tournament or cash) is going to be against the law.
Old 04-29-05, 08:22 AM
deekay140 deekay140 is offline
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Location: Chicago
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With that being said, how do we get there?
Old 04-29-05, 04:35 PM
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As long as what monies for entrie fees that comes in gets paid out it's not illegal. Keeping the rebuys would make it illegal. Charging at the door would make it illegal. If you supplied food and drink and added that cost to the entry fee and made it clear ( $50.00 enrty fee, $10.00 food and drink) you would be ok.
Old 04-29-05, 06:16 PM
Iceman37 Iceman37 is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Pittsburgh area, PA
Posts: 18
Check your state's laws online...

...but ALL states will say you're violating the law if you're profiting directly. Most will say you're violating the law if you or any other "host" is profiting indirectly (such as charging for drinks, etc., or even holding the tourney in a bar or restaurant where the players might buy drinks or dinner). Many (and I think most) will say its illegal in any case because it's gambling period, and unregulated gambling is generally against the law. Florida, for example, has very specific laws on the books that even dictate exactly how you can play home games, what the wagers are allowed to be, and what maximum the pot is allowed to reach! Likewise Florida and most states prohibit the advertising of any such game, even a home game.

If you're that worried about the legal consequences, I wouldn't recommend doing it. If you're just curious about the legal ramifications but you're not going to lose any sleep over it, I would take my chances. There are so many games going on nowadays that unless you just blatantly thumb your nose at the authorities (or get an undercover, or some whiney-assed loser who rats on you) you're probably going to be fine.
Old 04-30-05, 12:54 PM
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Question Rat

I have run torneys not for prophit but for the love of playing. Now I have the state up my back side and they are sworming my home games. Mass laws are no specific enough. I am a professional poker player and play everyday. This is getting to rich for my blood. What do you suggest I do?
Old 04-30-05, 03:26 PM
Posts: n/a
it depends on the state. Probably you would have to lower the limits to make it legal. I participate in $1 buy-ins about every week or two.
Old 05-01-05, 07:48 AM
Posts: n/a
Check your local listings

The short answer is that if the house (in this case you) makes any money off the game, it's illegal. That could include something as inoccuous as charging $5 per coke. In some states any kind of a cash game is illegal.

Follow this link for guidance: [url]http://www.gambling-law-us.com/State-Law-Summary/[/url]
Old 05-08-05, 01:00 AM
Posts: n/a
New Jersey

In New Jersey, being the most democratic pathetic state, you will defineately get it up the ass. 100% illegal. House can not profit from the game in any way shape or form, including just buying food or drink with the money. Several great clubs have been raided and put through hell, just because poker enthusiasts are looking to enjoy tournaments....
Old 05-08-05, 05:58 PM
Posts: n/a
senr them my way

thats true for jersey do not know about other states not sure about the buy back option good luck finding players to agree to that stipulation and if you find players willing to give up thier buy backs send them my way please have a nice little house game in jersey lots of action would welcome them with open arms
Old 05-09-05, 12:18 PM
Posts: n/a
There are several sites on the internet that provide the basic laws of " Gambling " in your state.


Texas laws are clear as to what can or can't be illegal. However, from reading the laws of the State concerning gambling. it appears that the State itself is in violation by running a Lottery scheme. Of course I am sure there is a " legal" loophole that prevents them from being shut down. God love those politicians.

(7) "Lottery" means any scheme or procedure whereby one or more prizes are distributed by chance among persons who have paid or promised consideration for a chance to win anything of value, whether such scheme or procedure is called a pool, lottery, raffle, gift, gift enterprise, sale, policy game, or some other name.

I play in several back room poker places here in Dallas and we have no fear of getting raided. Why? Becasue the AG and or the Police have better things to do. As for as the home games...if you have cars parked out in the street at all hours of the night? You will run the risk of a neighbor complaining and then the police have to honor that complaint. If there is so called illegal activity going on...then you are in trouble. I have spoken to several police officers about these rooms and they are familiar with them. It was stated that until there is a complaint or problems they will not investigate. I guess it is like the massage parlors. We know that they do other things than a simple massage but they know that unless there is a complaint then they are ok. So with that being said , let''s hope that the laws can be changed to accomodate the growing interest in Poker and allow some form in each state.
Be safe and have fun
Old 05-09-05, 02:06 PM
www.pokerpal.ca www.pokerpal.ca is offline
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My lawyer says it's a gray area in Canada. He's comfortable with entertainment costs vs buy-in or entry fee and he would be more comfortable with charity tournaments. As long as the money or some other personal benefit is not the focus of the event.
Old 07-16-05, 09:31 AM
Sean Gecko
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1st place 1000
2nd place 200

what a crappy pay out
Old 07-18-05, 08:32 AM
FergyFan315 FergyFan315 is offline
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Location: Syracuse,NY
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u cant take the money for ur self,(usally it depends where u live) besides the payouts should be better. only 3rd or better is getting payed out of 20 or 30.
Old 12-21-06, 03:25 AM
AceofSpader AceofSpader is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 21
Please tell me what gaming is truly legal?

The only reason the state considers it to be illegal is because those greedy politicians apparently arent making enough money off the taxpayers money and arent making money off the little guy.

Kinda makes me want to host one and stick it to the man.

I might be doing this when I get back to Ohio! ^^

I think a $5 door fee should apply while it can be used to buy food/drink or whatever and just pocket rebuys.

Besides, that late at night, whos gonna say anything?

It should be made a rule that once you lose, you cant whine and cry about it.

Players should know what they should spend and what they shouldnt.

At least thats the route Ill be taking.


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