Supreme Court declines intervention in Florida sports betting, which may relaunch

October 26, 2023

The Seminole Tribe sports betting compact, challenged by West Flagler Associates, may still propose 'serious constitutional questions.'

The US Supreme Court has denied a request from casino operators in Florida to put a US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia sports betting decision on hold. The case of West Flagler Associates v. Haaland has examined whether a compact agreed on in 2021 violated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA).

The first legal challenge was dismissed in October 2021, and the Tribe launched online sports betting with Hard Rock Bet in November that year, but a federal decision later that month blocked its operation.

In August 2022, the sports betting agreement was back in consideration and supported by the Biden administration. In June 2023, sports betting became legal for Tribes in Florida, but in August, West Flagler Associates filed a rehearing petition.

The case moved to the state's Supreme Court in September, and earlier this week the Biden administration encouraged the court to advance the ruling to allow sports betting in Florida.

Now, an unsigned order shows that court justices have rejected West Flagler Associates and its associated casinos’ request to put the DC Circuit court ruling on hold. Justices were in agreement that the DC Circuit court opinion clarifies the nature of the Tribal sports betting compact and its relationship to IGRA.

The compact authorizes gambling on Tribal lands only, but if the Seminole Tribe were allowed to conduct sports betting outside of its land, it “propose serious constitutional questions” if others were prohibited from operating this way.

Justices have not addressed the issue of challenging a state law, as this was not part of the case presented to the court. Though sports betting operated by the Seminole Tribe and Hard Rock Bet could relaunch, West Flagler Associates also has until December 11 to file a writ of certiorari petition with the Supreme Court.


Product Spotlight


Things get unruly in the company of some fleecy characters in the new Konami Gaming’s new Unwooly Riches slot series.

The top 5 properties that changed Las Vegas

Regular Gaming America contributor Oliver Lovat joins Tim Poole on the Huddle to discuss his 5 properties that changed Las Vegas - giving every resorts an influence rating out of 10. The question is: do you agree?

Peter Schoenke - Sports betting is here... but fantasy sports keeps growing

Peter Schoenke joins Tim Poole on the Huddle to discuss all things fantasy sports. His brand, RotoWire, is at the intersection of the affiliate and fantasy worlds, generating revenue from subscriptions, providing APIs to operators and via affiliate marketing. We discuss:

Within the states of Florida and California, Tribal gaming finds itself in a fascinating position. In Florida, only the Seminole Tribe, and Hard Rock, can provide mobile sports betting, with continued legal challenges f...

Viewpoints: Discussing the use of player loyalty programs
Industry experts answer Gaming America's burning questions on all things related to Tribal operators and player loyalty programs, including Rymax, CasinoTrac, OIGA, Mohegan and Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.
Sports betting regulation in Brazil: What can we expect?
Mattos Filho's Fabio Kujawski speaks to Gaming America about the uncertainty surrounding Brazil's roadmap to regulation and the need for a singular gaming authority.
Going private: Gaming's new standard?
A state of neo-IPO: Gaming America investigates, as more and more companies come off the public market.
Soloviev Group CEO: Moving to New York
The Soloviev Group, in collaboration with Mohegan, continues to wait on the NYGC for approval on its Freedom Plaza project. Gaming America spoke with Soloviev Group CEO Michael Hershman to learn more.