eSports Competitions Legislation Approved in Maryland

On April 30, 2019, Governor Larry Hogan of Maryland approved House Bill 48 titled “eSports Act.”[1] The eSports Act defines “eSports Competition” as a competition involving video games, including first-person shooters, real-time strategy games, and multi-player online battle arenas in which: (1) players compete against each other; and (2) the dominant element determining the results …

Proposed Loot Boxes & Microtransactions Gaming Bill in Missouri

Josh Hawley, a United States Senator from Missouri, recently announced plans to introduce a bill titled “The Protecting Children from Abusive Games Act.” The bill would, in essence, make it illegal for games “played by minors” to include loot boxes or pay-to-win microtransactions. How exactly the bill would achieve this is unclear as there is …

NJ Attorney General Sues DOJ For Failure To Respond To FOIA Request Regarding The Recent Wire Act Interpretation

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal filed suit on May 7, 2019 against the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) for its failure to respond to a Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) request filed on February 5, 2019. The request sought documents relating to Sheldon Adelson’s lobbying efforts regarding the recent DOJ interpretation of the …

New Hampshire Lottery Commission and NeoPollard Interactive Respond to DOJ’s Refusal to Determine Wire Act Applicability to State Lotteries as Requested by the Court

Last week the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) refused to rule out future prosecution of state lotteries and their employees and vendors under the 1961 Wire Act. “The potential Wire Act liability of state agencies, employees, and vendors involves the evaluation of numerous complicated and important issues, and the department intends to give these issues …

The Future of Loot Boxes in the State of Washington May Lie within its Courts

The Quinault Indian Nation has filed a lawsuit against Valve Corporation in the State of Washington alleging the popular game developer engages in unregulated and unlicensed online gambling. The complaint, filed on April 3, 2019, claims the introduction of the loot box system in CS:GO “was a deliberate attempt . . . to increase its …

U.S. DOJ Claims Reinterpretation of Wire Act Did Not Address State Lotteries and Its Vendors

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) continues to leave the gaming industry scratching their heads as it now claims the Office of Legal Counsel’s (OLC) November 2018 Opinion did not address the Wire Act’s applicability to state lotteries and their vendors. This assertion came in a memo from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, dated …

DOJ Extends Deadline for Implementation of Wire Act Reinterpretation

Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie Wire Act Reinterpretation Commercial Gaming Blog

We previously reported that, as a result of the 2018 Opinion, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein issued a memorandum on January 15, 2019 stating that Department of Justice (“DOJ”) attorneys should refrain for ninety (90) days  from pursuing any actions against persons and businesses that relied on the 2011 interpretation in order to allow them …