North Carolina sports fans will not be able to bet online by the 2024 Super Bowl.
Regulators set an application deadline for Dec. 27, 2023, on Wednesday, and then later announced betting on the Feb. 11 NFL championship will not happen.
The North Carolina Lottery Commission set a 60-day window for approving applications, which would bring March Madness betting for the NCAA basketball tournaments into question. But still, no launch date has been set for the launch of North Carolina online sports betting.
The Sports Betting Committee of the NCLC approved the cutoff date and the basics of the application process for operators, service providers and suppliers during a public meeting on Wednesday. The license applications go before the full NCLC for final approval.
There are several steps involved in an operator obtaining approval. The NCLC has a state-mandated deadline of June 14, 2024, to launch sports betting.
“The Commission and its staff have a year from passage of the sports betting law to get betting underway,” Sterl Carpenter, the agency’s deputy director of sports betting, said as he explained the application framework. “Because of the variables involved in this process, it is too early to set a start date for sports betting in North Carolina at this time.”
Steps to obtaining a license
The framework of the NC licensing process was “constructed using multiple jurisdictions as a guide and they incorporate all the necessary components required by statute,” according to Carpenter who helped oversee operator licensing in Massachusetts before arriving in NC.
In addition to basic business details, operator applications for NC licenses must include:
- Details on the required written designation agreements operators must have with sports entities.
- IT security and responsible gaming policies.
- The operator’s business plan for NC and financial viability details.
- Licensure history in other states.
- Details of pertinent criminal and civil legal matters.
In addition to a formal license application, potential operators, service providers, and suppliers must submit an “NC Key Person Disclosure Form” to the NCLC. Carpenter defines the document as “a personal history disclosure form, which must be completed by all key persons of the application and applicants for the three licenses.”
“In-depth information requested on these forms range from personal data to education, employment history, criminal background and other licenses. This disclosure form is used throughout the industry. So, applicants should be familiar with it and know what is expected of them.”
As the commission completes thorough investigations of license applications, it will grant provisional licenses so suppliers can begin preparing to enter the NC market.
“Our statute allows the commission to grant provisional licenses to supplier applicants that meet certain requirements while staff continues to perform background checks and due diligence on these suppliers,” Carpenter said. “We can investigate them and move them forward. This request and attestation must be signed by all key persons and the applicant to be eligible for this provisional license.”
The commission encourages applicants “to submit their request for a background check as early as possible. This can be started before submission of the final application materials.”
Background checks can take up to 60 days and can be extended another 30 days if necessary. The NCLC has requested that applicants only submit completed applications. However, Carpenter clarified that the background check was an exception; it could be submitted independently.
Getting operators out in front of the process by submitting background checks before the full application will allow regulators to expedite the launch process and open online sports betting perhaps within 60 days of the Dec. 27 application deadline.