e sent cease-and-desist letters after reviewing the states gambling statutes. The two companies have until May 1 to stop offering paid daily fantasy sports contests in the state.
Alabama law says that an activity qualifies as illegal gambling if a person stakes something of value on a contest of chance, even when skill is involved, in order to win a prize
"As Attorney General, it is my duty to uphold Alabama law, including the laws against illegal gambling," Strange said. "Daily fantasy sports operators claim that they operate legally under Alabama law. However, paid daily fantasy sports contests are in fact illegal gambling under Alabama law."
Alabama law says that an activity qualifies as illegal gambling if a person stakes something of value on a contest of chance, even when skill is involved, in order to win a prize. Strange noted that there is skill involved in crafting a fantasy roster of real-life athletes, but contestants ultimately have no control over their players' performance.
"Because a player can fall ill, be injured or miss a large portion of a game, the results of paid daily fantasy sports contests largely depend on chance," Strange said.
Paid daily fantasy sports contests have been declared illegal in 12 states. In November, two Jefferson County men filed a federal lawsuit against DraftKings and FanDuel, claiming they constituted illegal gambling. They sought to regain lost money and to gain status as a class-action suit for all Alabamians who have lost money on fantasy sports websites.
Both companies operate under the misrepresentation that their daily fantasy sports are games of skill, not chance, the lawsuit claims.