How to Play the US Lottery Online


There are four major types of lotteries in the US: in-state, multi-state, international, and online. Each has its own rules, but most lottery sites offer a variety of games to choose from.

In-state lotteries are operated by state governments. The New Hampshire Lottery, for example, was the first state-run lottery in the United States. It began operations in 1964. As of the end of 2017, there were 45 states operating a lottery, along with Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. When 2021 rolls around, all 50 states will have an official lottery system in place.

Multi-state lotteries are also popular, with Powerball and Mega Millions available almost everywhere. They offer huge jackpot prizes. You can play multiple draw and instant win games, and some states even allow you to buy tickets from an online retailer. These games are also available on mobile apps.

Online lotteries are also growing in the U.S., with more and more states seeking to legalize them. A number of Northeastern states are currently in the process of doing so, including Massachusetts. However, there are a few limitations with online lottery play. Most states only sell their tickets to individuals who are physically present in their state. This means that any ticket that is bought from a retailer is not necessarily a winning ticket. For bigger jackpots, you might have to bring your identification documents, a claim form, or an IRS form with you.

Online lotteries have their own unique laws, so check with your state’s lottery to find out what the laws are for buying and playing. While there are several legit lottery sites out there, the best ones provide a wide range of games, secure payment methods, and promotions.

For instance, the Florida Lottery, which is self-regulating, has its own app, which allows players to purchase tickets, track the numbers they’ve picked, and view drawings. In January, it will introduce Powerball to its list of games.

Some online lottery sites may also allow you to participate in syndicates, which is an organized way to increase your chances of winning. Others may also offer discounts or raffles, though the amount of these offers varies from site to site. Other games that you can play online include keno and scratch cards.

Several states have legalized online lotteries, while others have deferred to third-party applications. If your state is one of them, you can learn more about your options in the following sections.

Online lottery sales are not as common as sports betting. Although there are a few legalized sites, most US states still restrict purchases of lottery tickets to people who are physically in their state.

Until recently, online gaming was not permitted. However, this changed with the clarification of the Wire Act by the Department of Justice in 2011. After the clarification was issued, the doors were opened for states to offer lottery tickets to customers online. That said, most states still haven’t approved online lottery sales, citing verification challenges.