Good news for the Seminole Tribe: the tribe will be able to offer digital wagering in Florida.
Seminoles won – for now:
After the panel that consisted of three judges from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia had a meeting regarding the sports betting case that included two parimutuels who were against the U.S. Department of the Interior, the outcome was good for the tribe. As the Sports Handle reports, the legal experts think that the Supreme Court will probably appeal to the decision, nevermind the final outcome.
The tribes across the whole country were worried about this case since it could make a great impact on the whole tribal gaming community. The monopoly granted to the Seminole Tribe will greatly affect the other tribes as well.
The member of the tribe commented: “The Seminole Tribe of Florida is pleased with today’s unanimous decision. It is a positive outcome for the Seminole tribe and the people of Florida and for all of Indian Country. The tribe is fully reviewing the decision to determine next steps.”
Non-compliance with the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act:
Everything began in May 2021, more than two years ago. Back then, the state of Florida allowed the Seminole tribe to include digital sports betting in its offering as long as they used the server placed on the tribe’s land for betting flows. However, the parimutuels disagreed with that decision, claiming that this compact isn’t in accordance with the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The Act can be used for regulating gambling on tribal territory.
However, the Act was written back in 1980, before the era of the internet, and this is the reason why digital betting isn’t included in it, therefore, not regulated.
Even famous Hard Rock is interested in the case, claiming that they’re trying to “bring safe and trusted sports betting back to Florida,” as the famous company wrote on Twitter. The Seminole Tribe already launched its Hard Rock Digital platform, even before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia approved it in November 2021. Two courts took it down, but it was live for 34 days before this decision.
It’s still unknown if the tribe will try to launch the platform one more time, but one thing is clear: there are a lot of disagreements and confusion related to this compact. What will happen at the end, and what will it mean to the whole Indian community in the States? Nobody knows, but everything is possible.