Commission OKs Rolling Approval Of Maryland Sportsbook Licenses To Speed Up The Process

Written By Katarina Vojvodic on September 26, 2022
gambling regulators approvals maryland sports betting

The Maryland Sports Wagering Application Review Commission (SWARC) has agreed to allow rolling approval of online sports betting licenses to launch sportsbooks in 2022.

SWARC, a temporary group responsible for license distribution, opened its application process for online sports betting licenses on Sept. 7. All pursuing that kind of Maryland sports betting license must apply by Oct. 21, 2022.

That move to consider and approve individual sportsbook operators on a rolling basis and allow them to take bets immediately after receiving a license could accelerate the launch of online sports gambling to this year rather than 2023 when anticipated. It could actually be closer to late November or early December.

All timely and suitable applications qualify for a Maryland sports betting license

To meet the demand for sports betting sooner, Jim Nielsen, deputy director and COO of the Maryland State Lottery Gaming and Control Agency, presented in a meeting held on Sept. 22 that it would be best to award licenses on a rolling basis.

He also emphasized that this would be the case only if less than 60 applications were submitted, as that is the maximum number of sports betting licenses available in the state.

“There’s going to be a lot of activity, for which we have to be prepared to act on a responsible but expeditious basis,” said SWARC Chairman Thomas Brandt at a meeting. According to Brandt, the staggered launch will likely allow SWARC to approve licenses before sports betting in the state goes live.

SWARC opened its application process for online sports betting licenses on Sept. 7 and will continue to receive them until Oct. 21, 2022, which is when the application period will end. The state is currently in the middle of a submission period in which potential mobile and brick-and-mortar operators are filing the paperwork to be considered for a license.

The application fee is $500,000.

Once the application window closes, SWARC can take up to 45 days to review the applications as the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency (MLGCA) completes background checks to determine if applicants are qualified for licenses.

Maryland also set goals for the operators that gain licenses to hire minority and women-owned businesses as subcontractors.

Top US sportsbooks ready to enter MD sports betting scene

As soon as online gambling is live in Maryland, players will see some of the best US sportsbook apps available.

The leading sportsbooks like BetMGM, Caesars, DraftKings, FanDuel and PointsBet have already announced market access and their presence in the state and have partnerships in place for retail betting.

Maryland citizens voted to approve sports betting in November 2020, and the first five sportsbooks opened in the state in December 2021.

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Katarina Vojvodic

Katarina Vojvodic is a lead writer for PlayUSA who lives in Toronto. Vojvodic provides coverage of the US gambling industry with a focus on US online casinos. Previously, she covered Ontario’s online gambling industry for PlayCanada.com. Vojvodic holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Belgrade. Outside working hours, she can be found near the water with her husband and their two kids.

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