Perhaps the biggest problem that Maryland residents have with online gambling is that access is not permitted for them on many major online casinos. Due to strict state legislation and a broad definition of what is not allowable, most gaming sites are simply not willing to risk hefty fines or possible lawsuits by allowing Maryland residents to create accounts on their systems.
The annotated Maryland State Code prohibits most gambling establishments from forming or operating in the state. Even household poker games that involve playing for money are banned throughout Maryland. Although the law was from an era long ago where gambling establishments were known for violence and rampant criminal activity, since that section is still on the books it is also actively enforceable. Hopefully in the not too distant future, that law may be repealed or adjusted.
Maryland has long been a progressive state that takes a rather liberal view on most political and social issues. The mere fact that this antiquated section of law prohibiting gambling establishments even still exists is somewhat of a mystery. Representatives are currently working on new legislation that will perform a twofold function. The first step is to address how the existing regulation translates into the new world of technology. Internet regulations are not standard among nations or states and therefore allow a bit of flexibility for states facing this conundrum. The second step is to determine not only the legality of online casinos operating in the state of Maryland, but also the ability for online gambling to establish headquarters and operate from Maryland. The positive revenues that have consistently been generated from the emergence of physical casinos have not resulted in higher crime rates, as many people who opposed the bill feared would happen. This track record and the amicable reputation that is being developed for casinos and gambling in Maryland may prove to be just the right formula to push an old law out of the way to make room for more progressive forms of entertainment.
Political and legislative changes are notoriously slow in most states, and Maryland is no exception. For the time being, residents are happy to settle with sites that do allow access for Maryland citizens. There are always a few exceptions and loopholes to vague laws, so most people do not fear the unknown consequences of their online gambling. Sites that offer free play and other forms of entertainment for fun rather than profit are perfectly legal and offer many of the same benefits as other online casinos. Until the laws are lifted or revamped, playing for fun is about as good as it gets in Maryland.