Massachusetts Gaming Commission
101 Federal St., 12th Floor
Boston, MA 02110
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission oversees casino gaming in Massachusetts. The commission consists of five members. Each commissioner shall serve for a term of five years and is eligible for reappointment; however, no commissioner may serve for more than ten years. The commission is responsible for the general oversight and protection of gaming in the state.
The Division of Gaming Enforcement within the Attorney General’s Office is generally responsible for enforcing the criminal violations of the casino law, such as investigating and prosecuting allegations of criminal activity related to or affecting the operation of gaming establishments or games and receiving and taking appropriate action on referrals for criminal prosecution from the commission or any other law enforcement body. The Massachusetts Police and the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission also have a role in regulation.
AVAILABLE GAMING LICENSES
Casino Operator License
Slot Parlor License
Primary Gaming Vendor License
Secondary Gaming Vendor License
Non-Gaming Vendor License
Labor Organization License
For more information on available gaming licenses, see Regulatory Fact Sheet.
CASINO TAX RATE
25 percent on gaming revenue, plus a $600 fee, collected annually, for each of their gaming machines.
SLOT PARLOR TAX RATE
49 percent effective rate on gaming revenue. Like casinos, the slot parlor is also subject to the $600 annual fee for each of its gaming machines.
TAX PROMOTIONAL CREDITS
Promotional Credits shall not count towards a licensee’s gross gaming revenue
WITHHOLDINGS ON WINNINGS
Massachusetts will withhold 5 percent on winnings of $600 or greater
|Transportation Infrastructure and Development Fund||15%|
|Commonwealth Stabilization Fund||10%|
|Gaming Economic Development Fund||9.5%|
|Community Mitigation Fund||6.5%|
|Public Health Trust Fund||5%|
|Local Capital Projects Fund||4.5%|
|Race Horse Development Fund||2.5%|
|Massachusetts Cultural Council||2%|
|Massachusetts Tourism Fund||1%|
|General Local Aid Fund||100%|
STATUTORY FUNDING REQUIREMENT
The 2011 Expanded Gaming Law required at least $5 million to be contributed, annually, to fund responsible gaming programs. The amount assessed against each casino or slot parlor will depend on the number of gaming machines it offers.
Individuals may choose to self-exclude for six months, one year, three years, five years, or a lifetime. An individual may only select the lifetime duration if their name has previously appeared on the voluntary self-exclusion list for at least six months.
COMPLIMENTARY ALCOHOLIC DRINKS
No marketing, advertising, and/or promotional communications or activity relative to gaming to specifically target persons under the age of 21.
ON-PREMISE DISPLAY REQUIREMENT
Casinos are required to prominently post signs directing gamblers on how to receive assistance for problem gambling, including self-exclusion information.
21+ years old to gamble
Must be 21 years of age to remain in a gaming area.
In order to receive a permit for a gaming device, the device must be evaluated by an independent testing laboratory.
ANTI-MONEY LAUNDERING REQUIREMENTS
Federal compliance requirements.
The Commission must be notified at least one day in advance of shipping any slot machines from outside of the Commonwealth. 205 CMR 145.02(4).
RESTRICTIONS ON POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS
No applicant for a gaming license may contribute to an individual who holds a municipal, county or state office.
CREDIT OFFERED TO PATRONS
CASHLESS GAMING & ALTERNATIVE PAYMENTS
Yes. Additionally, Massachusetts does not accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment.
The state’s three casinos are eligible to apply for a “category 1” license for the right to offer up to two mobile skins in addition to a retail sportsbook.
The state’s two horseracing simulcast facilities may obtain a “category 2” license for the right to offer a retail sportsbook and one mobile skin.
State law also allows up to seven “category 3” licenses to be awarded to mobile operators untethered to a land-based operator.
Mobile allowed statewide.
Retail: 15 percent
Mobile: 20 percent
INITIAL LICENSING FEE
Qualified gaming entities can request a temporary license for immediate commencement of betting operations after paying a $1m license fee.
LICENSE RENEWAL FEE
$5 million, payable every five years
Massachusetts prohibits sports wagering involving high school sports, youth sporting events, and collegiate sporting teams from the state. Sports betting on collegiate sports events is only permitted if a Massachusetts-based team is involved in a collegiate tournament.
OFFICIAL DATA MANDATE
None. However, a sports governing body may notify the commission that it desires sports wagering operators to use official league data to settle tier 2 sports wagering on sporting events of such sports governing body.
Related Research Reports
State of the States 2023
A comprehensive review of the U.S. 2022 commercial gaming sector, providing financial performance figures and market analysis for the 34 states and the District of Columbia with commercial gaming operations.
Responsible Gaming Regulations and Statutes Guide
A comprehensive state-by-state collection of the statutes and regulations around responsible gaming