Fantasy Sports Operators Subject to New Massachusetts Tax

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Fantasy Sports Operators Subject to New Massachusetts Tax

The Massachusetts sports betting bill (“H.5164”) was signed into law in August 2022 by Governor Charlie Baker (more here on the impact of the bill). Included in the bill were two key provisions carving out fantasy sports contests from the definition of sports wagering1 and levying a separate 15 percent excise tax on gross gaming revenues earned by fantasy contest operators.2

The new bill raises questions as to the state authority that will oversee fantasy contests. Since it first introduced fantasy sports regulations in 2016,3 the Attorney General’s office has been tasked with regulation and oversight of fantasy contests in Massachusetts. The new bill directs the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (“MGC”), not the Attorney General’s office, to register and collect taxes from fantasy operators.4

These questions regarding oversight authority, as well as the timeline by which fantasy contest operators must register and begin to pay taxes, were addressed in October at a MGC Open Meeting. During the meeting…

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