Florida Gaming Control Commission Delivers Cease and Desist Letters to PrizePicks, Underdog & Betr


While Florida sports bettors await word from America’s courts on sports betting, the Florida Gaming Control Commission has taken daily fantasy sites Underdog, PrizePicks, and Betr off the menu.

In three cease-and-desist letters sent to the individual companies, the commission’s executive director, Louis Trombetta, wrote that, “the Florida Gaming Commission has received information that your company may be offering or accepting illegal bets or wagers from Florida residents. We have also received information that your company may be promoting and conducting an illegal lottery.”

Later in the letters, Trombetta states that he is “demanding you immediately cease and desist offering or accepting bets or wagers from residents of this state.”

The letters lay out the Florida law in no uncertain terms: “Under Florida law, betting or wagering on the result of contests of skill, such as sports betting, including fantasy sports betting, is strictly prohibited.”

The three companies all run pick ‘em style daily fantasy sports games, where people can pick More or Less based on athletes’ statistical projections and put them together for different payouts.

A spokesperson for DraftKings said they did not get a letter. It is not known at this time if FanDuel or any other companies in the daily fantasy sports world were sent similar letters.

“The commission staff confirmed to me that the language in the letter broadly applies to all paid fantasy sports contests and they are not aware of any paid fantasy sports company operating legally in Florida,” said John Lockwood, a Florida gaming attorney representing multiple companies potentially affected by this issue. “We disagree on the merits, and will be working with the commission and potentially the legislature so we can ensure Florida sports fans can continue to play.”

The three letters were first uploaded by Florida Regulatory Watch.

According to at least one Florida resident, the Underdog app was still up and running as of late Friday afternoon and accepting entries.

PrizePicks is also still operating in the state.

“PrizePicks is participating in the regulatory review of paid fantasy sports operators in Florida by the Florida Gaming Control Commission. We are eager to meet with the Executive Director, and the Commission, to discuss our business and our skill-based gaming platform,” said a PrizePicks spokesperson.

“At this time, there is no change to our business operations within the state. We are committed to ensuring that our valued members continue to enjoy their right to play the fantasy sports games they love.”

The Florida Gaming Commission was created last year following the passage of a new gaming compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida.

This is a developing story.

Cover Image Credit: Getty Images

About the Author

Jeff Edelstein (jedelstein)

Jeff is a veteran journalist, now working with SportsHandle.com, USBets.com, and RotoGrinders.com as a senior analyst. He’s also an avid sports bettor and DFS player, and cannot, for the life of him, get off the chalk. He can be reached at jedelstein@bettercollective.com.