Delaware on Monday asked the full 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals to hear whether the state can offer unlimited single-game sports betting, according to a 24-page petition.
The request comes two weeks after a three-judge Circuit Court panel in Philadelphia ruled the Delaware lottery’s sports-betting plan violated federal law. The ruling limited Delaware to allowing parlay betting on NFL games only.
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Parlay betting requires picking the winner in more than one contest. The Court said Delaware could offer parlays on a minimum of three games – players must win all games in their parlay in order to win the bet.
Delaware, under the ruling, began accepting parlay bets on NFL games beginning last Thursday, the start of the NFL season.
Delaware’s petition must be approved by at least seven of the 3rd Circuit’s 12 judges for the case to proceed. If the request isn’t granted, Delaware could petition the U.S. Supreme Court.
"The State of Delaware should have its day in court. We hope we get that opportunity," Gov. Jack Markell said in a statement. "We believe there are important legal and factual questions that should be heard by the entire Court."
The four major pro sports leagues and the NCAA had asked the appellate panel to delay Delaware’s wider plan for sports betting while the plan’s legality was being decided by a district court. Instead, the appellate panel ruled on the case itself. It said Delaware’s exemption to the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act limited the state to allowing the same type of gambling it had in 1976, when for one year it allowed parlay wagering on the NFL.
"We expected them to make this filing," said Kenneth Nachbar, an attorney for the four major sports leagues and the NCAA "We’ve seen all these arguments before and believe the judges ruled appropriately."
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