Florida Sports Betting Case Will Wait Until At least Next Year

It will take longer for the complicated web of the Florida sports betting controversy to be unraveled in court. That time may not come until at least next year as indicated by the timetable of the US Courts of Appeals. This means that fans hoping to place legal bets on their favorite teams through their mobile devices will have to wait longer still.

Briefing Timetable

Opening briefs will commence from the federal government and the Seminole Tribe will be submitted, allowing appellants to present all objections and claims as the court will not consider matters or arguments raised in the reply papers.

The court will expect the answering briefs during October, on October 3 for the federal government, and on October 6 for West Flagler Associates. Additionally, the amicus brief is scheduled for October 13. The Seminole tribe and the federal government will submit written responses to pending claims on November 14, ensuring that a decision will not be rendered before the end of 2022.

The court strongly advised the parties to hand-deliver paper copies of their brief in order to avoid delays, stating that filing by mail might take longer. The court stated that it would ensure to notify all parties of the date of oral argument and the composition of the merits panel at a later date.

Florida Sports Betting Case Background

It has been a wild ride for legal sports betting in Florida, with several attempts from various groups to legalize various types of sports betting failing. Beginning last July, when the state approved a 30-year gaming compact that granted the Seminole Tribe exclusive retail and online sports betting rights in Florida, the state’s sports betting journey began.

Mobile sports betting was operational for around three weeks until US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Judge Dabney Friedrich ruled in favor of the opponents on December 4, and Hard Rock Sportsbook immediately stopped taking mobile wagers.

What to Expect

It appears that sports betting in Florida are at a standstill until further notice. Floridians will have to wait at least a few years before legal online sports betting becomes available if it is ever legalized. If a citizen’s initiative passes in 2024, the earliest time for Florida online sports betting to begin is 2025.

Retail sports betting could be legalized if it is included in a new gaming compact with the Seminole Tribe, but this would obviously not include any avenues for online sports betting and would limit the activity to Seminole Tribe-owned casinos.

The only silver lining is that there are other states where sports betting is legal and readily available, so Floridians can still place their bets if they are willing to travel. Otherwise, they will have to wait patiently for the situation to resolve itself.