For many people, playing online casinos can be fun and kept in control. However, for a smaller portion of players, online casinos can become addictive. The Game Day Casino wants all our readers to enjoy online casinos in a safe and responsible way.
While there are millions of people in the United States with what experts can call a gambling disorder, the vast majority of people do not develop a problem. The Game Day Casino cares about each and every reader, so here we will provide information on responsible play, which is also an important topic for all online casino operators.
What Is Responsible Gambling?
Responsible gambling generally means that your gambling doesn’t negatively affect your quality of life away from online casinos. People should live balanced lives with joy and happiness, so if online casinos start negatively impacting your mental health or relationships, it is a great idea to take a look at your habits and correct them.
If players are able to spot signs of problem gambling at an early stage, adjustments can be made to keep the activity fun and exciting. Unfortunately for some people, if the problematic gambling activity is ignored for too long, it may require quitting entirely.
Setting a Budget or Knowing When to Stop
Playing online casinos obviously involves real money, though there are also free online casinos. It is important to know what you can afford to lose, typically on a weekly or monthly basis. Most working people in the U.S. are paid every two weeks, so knowing how much you can afford to spend each paycheck can also be important.
Every player has different financial situations and obligations, but it is helpful to ensure your expenses are accounted for before spending money on online casino entertainment.
Keeping Online Casino Fun
While online casinos can be played at home while you are by yourself, it can be helpful to make the games as social as possible. Talk to your friends and family about your online casino experiences, and if you have any challenges with your play, be honest and transparent about those with the people you trust.
Responsible gambling means not hiding your interest and passion for the activity. Typically those who develop issues with online casinos tend to conceal their play from those they are closest to. That is one of the classic signs of problem gambling that every player should be aware of.
Call If You Need Help
There is no shame whatsoever for reaching out to professionals if you think you may need someone to talk to about your online casino play. One of the best resources available comes from the National Council on Problem Gambling, based out of Washington, D.C.
The group’s website is an invaluable resource, and they also have a 24/7 hotline number at 1-800-522-4700. You can also send texts to that number. The hotline is totally confidential, so you can discuss your issues openly without worry.
Online casino gambling is regulated at the state level, not at the federal level. This means that states and their online casino licensees are tasked with providing a bit of assistance to individuals who can’t control their play.
New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Connecticut, and West Virginia all over their own respective programs for self-exclusion.
Let’s dive into them.
New Jersey Online Gambling Self-Exclusion
In 2001, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement established a self-exclusion program for those who wish to voluntarily exclude themselves from gambling in Atlantic City casinos. The program was then expanded in 2013 to include the possibility of self-exclusion for online gambling activities.
How Does the NJ Self-Exclusion Program Work?
The Self-Exclusion Program allows players to voluntarily exclude themselves from gambling activities in land-based Atlantic City casinos and online gaming sites.
Once you are registered in the program, you won’t be able to:
- Gamble in any land-based casino in New Jersey or any online casino in the NJ jurisdiction.
- Receive or use any complementary goods or services from those casinos.
- Be a member of gambling clubs.
- Receive credit, cash checks, collect winnings or recover losses from or at a casino.
You can select if you wish to be excluded from:
- Atlantic City Casino Facilities and online casinos.
- Online casinos only.
The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) accepts four options for registration on the Self-Exclusion Program:
- Option 1 - In Person: Self-exclusion from all casino gambling activities in Atlantic City and all online gambling sites.
- Option 2 - In Person: Self-exclusion from all online gambling activities.
- Option 3 - Online Through Player Account: Self-exclusion from all online gambling activities through your signup to your online player account.
- Option 4 - Online at DGE’s website: Self-exclusion from all online gambling activities through registration at the DGE website.
The minimum periods of self-exclusion vary according to the option you select:
- Option 1 / Option 2 - one year, five years, lifetime.
- Option 3 / Option 4 - one year or five years.
How to Register for the Self-Exclusion Program in New Jersey?
As explained above, there are four options to exclude yourself from gambling in New Jersey. In case you’re only interested in self-excluding from online casinos, the easiest option is to register online at the DGE’s website, which can be done by:
- Visiting the website through the link above
- Clicking the button “Register for NJ Self Exclusion Program"
- Read the Instructions
- Confirm that you request voluntary self-exclusion from online gambling in NJ
- Select the self-exclusion period (1 year or 5 years)
- Fill in your personal and contact details
- Read and acknowledge the Waiver and Release
- Provide a governmental photo identification (e.g., driver’s license)
Once you apply to the Self-Exclusion Program, you’ll be unable to perform any online gambling activity until the end of the period you selected.
In case you’d rather register for this program in person, you’re required to fill in the application at the following locations:
- New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement
Tennessee Avenue and the Boardwalk
Open Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m.
Phone: (609) 441-3846
- New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement
140 E. Front Street
Trenton, NJ 08625
Open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
- Meadowlands Racetrack
50 Route 120
East Rutherford, New Jersey 07073
Please call to verify when open
- Monmouth Park
175 Oceanport Avenue
Oceanport, New Jersey 07757
Please call to verify when open
- Freehold Raceway
Route 9 & Business Route 33
Freehold, New Jersey 07728
You can also see an example of the form you’ll have to fill in person here.
Pennsylvania Online Gambling Self-Exclusion
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board offers different programs for individuals who wish to self-exclude from online gambling. These programs were developed to help those who want to be banned from online casinos, video gaming terminals, and fantasy sports betting.
What Programs Are Available for Responsible Gaming in PA?
As a player, you can set self-imposed limits to help you keep your online gambling behavior under control or exclude yourself from all online casino activities.
The limits available in this program include:
- Limit your deposit amounts on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
- Specify the maximum amount of money you can spend on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
- Select the maximum amount of any single wager.
- Limit the maximum amount of hours you can engage with online gambling daily.
You can also apply for a complete suspension of your activity in online gambling platforms for any number of hours or days.
If you’d like to remove yourself from all online casino activities, you can enlist in the iGaming Self-Exclusion list.
How Does PA iGaming Self-Exclusion Work?
The process to enlist the iGaming Self-Exclusion list is simple and allows applicants to ban themselves from online casinos.
This program was developed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) to help those who find that their gambling behavior has become a problem.
After you sign-up for self-exclusion, iGaming sites must:
- Refuse wagers from you.
- Deny your gaming privileges.
- Not accept check cashing privileges, club membership, complimentary goods, and other related services.
- Refuse your participation in any type of online casino gambling activity.
- Ensure that you won’t receive any mailings, telemarketing promotions, or any other promotional material related to online casinos.
Although you won’t be able to gamble on these platforms, you can still withdraw your funds from all the online casinos you have registered with within PA.
If you gamble during your self-exclusion period, any winnings pertaining to those wagers will be removed from your balance and used by the PGCB for its responsible gaming programs.
Applicants should also be aware that if they violate the terms of self-exclusion, they may be arrested.
How to Register for PA Online Casino Self-Exclusion?
The registration process is fairly simple. All you have to do is follow these steps:
- Visit the PGCB’s website and click the button for “Self-Exclusion Enrollment Sign-In."
- At this stage, you’ll have to use a Keystone account to log in. If you don’t have a Keystone account, you can create one by clicking “Register." You can then return to the self-exclusion page to continue the process.
- After logging in with your Keystone account, you’ll have to verify your identity by filling out the “Existing User Verification."
Once your identity is verified, you will be guided through the process of enrollment for self-exclusion.
You have to provide the following information during the enrollment:
- iGaming account information
- Date of Birth
- Telephone number
- Social Security number
- Email address
- Government-issued photo identification (e.g., driver’s license)
- Current photo of yourself from a live camera (e.g., webcam or phone camera)
The final step of the process is to select the length of your self-exclusion ban, which can be one year, five years, or a lifetime.
Your enrollment in the self-exclusion list will remain active for the length of time you selected. Once that period is over, you can request your removal from the list.
Michigan Online Gambling Self-Exclusion
Michigan legalized online gambling in early 2021, but it has already covered all the bases to protect players.
Residents in MI can apply for the Responsible Gambling Database, which allows them to self-exclude from online casinos.
How Does the Responsible Gambling List Work?
Applying for the self-exclusion list is a straightforward process, but some aspects should be considered:
- Residents in MI can apply for the list before or after opening an account in an online casino.
- The self-exclusion period can last for one year or five years.
- Once the self-exclusion period ends, the applicant will be removed from the list and has to apply again.
- Registering to the list may take up to 45 days after the applicant submits the form.
- Once the application is processed, applicants will be informed of their exclusion via email or US mail.
- All the people already part of the Exclusion of Persons list will be automatically added to the Responsible Gambling Database.
- The Responsible Gambling Database is a separate protocol from the Disassociated Persons List (which is only valid for the three casinos in Detroit).
How to Apply for Michigan’s Responsible Gambling List?
If you’d like to self-exclude from online casinos in MI, you must visit the Michigan Gaming Control Board’s website. There, you’ll find a link to the application form titled “Internet Gaming and Sports Betting Responsible Gaming Database Application."
This link will direct you to the application form, which you must fill in either:
- In-person at a Michigan Gaming Control Board Office.
- Online and submitted by email to MGCB-RGD@michigan.gov.
- By writing, and submitted by the US Mail to the Responsible Gaming Section, Michigan Gaming Control Board, 3062 W Grand Blvd, Suite L-700, MI, 48202.
The form requires applicants to fill in their details and select whether they’d like to be excluded from internet gaming or sports betting and for how long (1 or 5 years).
Please note that you’ll be required to verify your identity by providing a copy of your driver’s license or other government-issued photo identification document along with the application form.
Applicants should also note that the document must be signed and sealed by a Notary Public in the County of the applicants’ residence. This ensures that the form is valid and was filled voluntarily.
Although the self-exclusion form is in English, it also contains a page with information for Interpreters that may help non-English speaking applicants fill in the form.
Once the application form is submitted, the Executive Director of the Michigan Gaming Control Board will personally analyze it and process it.
Connecticut Online Gambling Self-Exclusion
Players who wish to be self-excluded from online casino gambling in Connecticut can register to the Self-Exclusion List developed by the Gaming Commission in CT.
Both residents and visitors in Connecticut can ban themselves from any type of gambling in the state.
How Does the Connecticut Self-Exclusion List Work?
The Self-Exclusion List takes immediate effect after someone signs themselves up. During the registration process, applicants must select if they wish to be banned for one year, five years, or a lifetime.
Once the self-exclusion period ends, players can apply for their removal from the program. Unfortunately, once you sign-up, there’s no way to remove yourself from the list before the time is up.
As soon as you register to the self-exclusion list, the Gaming Commission will share your information with all the licensed online casino operators and their partners.
From the moment you’re part of the list, you won’t be able to:
- Access the gaming floor at any of CT tribal casino
- Create an account with an online casino or online sports betting website
- Join any fantasy sports platform in CT
- Place any bet at the Connecticut Lottery’s retail sports betting locations
- Receive any marketing material related to gambling
- Collect any winnings from gambling
- Recoup any losses from gambling
- Receive any gambling-related reward points
How to Register for the Self-Exclusion List in Connecticut?
You can register for the Self-Exclusion list at the Connecticut Gaming Division’s website. The process is very straightforward. However, make sure to read the instructions before completing your registration.
It’s also recommended that you read the Terms and Conditions of Connecticut Gaming Self-Exclusion.
To voluntarily register in the self-exclusion list, you can just follow these steps:
- Visit the Self-Exclusion Registration page
- Read the instructions on the page
- Click “Get Started"
- Fill in your personal information
- Select the minimum self-exclusion period (1 year, 5 years, or lifetime)
- Choose the language you’d like to receive your communication in (English or Spanish)
- Fill in your contact details
- Verify your identity through a governmental photo identification document (e.g., driver’s license)
- Give consent and confirm you’re voluntarily self-excluding yourself
After you submit your application for the Self-Exclusion List, it will come into effect immediately. Please note that if you select “lifetime" in the minimum self-exclusion period, you will forever be unable to remove yourself from the list.
Once the self-exclusion period is over, you will be able to request that your name be removed from the list. Nevertheless, unlike what happens with the registration, this process won’t be immediate. Instead, there will be an evaluation period during which the Gaming Commission will analyze your request.
West Virginia Online Gambling Self-Exclusion
The West Virginia Lottery is the entity responsible for gambling in the state, and it’s also in charge of responsible gambling problems. Players who reside or visit WV can register to be part of the self-exclusion list, preventing them from joining any gambling activity.
How Does the Voluntary Exclusion Program Work?
If you have concerns about your gambling behavior, you can request a voluntary ban from the West Virginia Lottery. This ban will be in place for all casinos and sports betting, land-based or online.
The registration in the self-exclusion list is made via written letter and sent by US post to the director of the West Virginia Lottery.
Unlike other states, the self-exclusion form doesn’t require players to select the length of time they wish to be banned from all gambling activities. In this case, it’s up to the director of the Lottery Commission to decide whether the exclusion should be permanent or not.
After one year of submitting the registration to the self-exclusion list, registered people can request removal from the program by submitting a form via post.
Once you have submitted the request to join the self-exclusion list, you won’t be able to:
- Enter any land-based casinos or sports betting facility
- Create an account in online casinos or online sports betting websites
- Cash checks at casinos
- Receive winnings from gambling
- Recoup any losses from gambling
- Participate in any type of gambling activity
- Receive email marketing materials about gambling
How to Register for the WV Voluntary Exclusion Program?
For the time being, the only way to register for the voluntary exclusion program in West Virginia is to fill in a form and submit it via US post.
The process is straightforward, and to complete it, you have to follow these steps:
- Visit the West Virginia Lottery website and click on “Self Exclusion Form" on the right-hand side under “Forms"
- Fill in your details and address
- Insert your phone number
- Indicate your driver’s license number
- Write down any other necessary information as requested in the form
- Select the applicable option for the questions that follow
- Confirm that you acknowledge and accept the terms of this self-exclusion program
- Please make a copy of your driver’s license and attach it to the form
- Have the form notarized by a public notary of your county of residence
Once you have filled in the self-exclusion form, you can submit it via US post to:
- Attn: David Bradley
West Virginia Lottery
900 Pennsylvania Avenue
Charleston, WV 25302