Illegal Lottery or Raffle Crimes In Florida

illegal lottery

The Florida Lottery is a government-run game of chance in the state of Florida. Throughout the state, residents and visitors enjoy scratch-off tickets and online games that create the opportunity to win a variety of cash prizes. Although it’s legal for the government to run a lottery, it’s illegal for private citizens to do the same.

If you live in Florida, it’s essential to understand the laws and penalties surrounding private lotteries. It’s also important to know that if you face charges for lottery or raffle crimes in Florida there is somewhere you can turn for help, and that’s The Umansky Law Firm.

What Is A Lottery?

A lottery is a game of chance in which small sums of money or items are risked to win a greater sum of money or item. There are multiple types of lotteries including:

  • Pyramid Lotteries
  • Chain Letter Lotteries
  • Referral Selling Lotteries

Other games of chance, such as BINGO, are not considered lotteries.

Is It Legal To Conduct A Lottery Drawing in Florida?

In the state of Florida, it’s illegal for a private citizen to have any involvement in a private lottery. Statute 849.09 outlines multiple lottery crimes including:

  • Setting Up, Promoting, or Conducting a Lottery 
  • Disposing of Money or Property By Lottery
  • Conducting a Lottery Drawing
  • Assisting in a Lottery

All of the crimes mentioned above are considered Third-Degree Felonies. According to Florida Law, Third-Degree Felonies are punishable by up to 5 years in prison and $5,000 in fines. Additional lottery crimes include:

  • Selling Lottery Tickets 
  • Possessing Lottery Tickets
  • Possessing Lottery Rundown Sheets

These crimes are all considered First-Degree Misdemeanors. In Florida, First-Degree Misdemeanors are punishable for up to 1 year in jail and $1,000 in fines.

Are Raffles Illegal In Florida?

The difference between a lottery and a raffle is lotteries are conducted by the government or citizens and raffles are conducted by non-profit organizations. Organizations interested in conducting raffles to raise money should be sure to consult the appropriate government entities, such as the county clerk’s office, and obtain appropriate licensure.

Any person or organization that does not meet the specific criteria of a non-profit organization as a 501(c)(3), (4),(7),(8),(10) or (19) is considered a private organization and is subject to fines and penalties. 

Viable Defense Strategies for Lottery and Raffle Charges

Knowledgeable defense attorneys have a firm understanding of viable defense strategies for lottery crimes. When you’re searching for an attorney to represent you and your case, be sure to ask them about the defense strategies they rely on to defend their clients in court. A few of the most popular defense strategies for lottery charges in Florida include:

  • Lack of evidence
  • Unlawful search and seizure
  • Mistaken identity

The exact defense strategy used will depend on the circumstances surrounding your case. To help your attorney create a viable defense strategy that will stand up in court, it’s essential to inform them of the entirety of your experience.

Hire A Competent Defense Attorney in Orlando

If you’re facing charges for a lottery crime in Florida, there’s no better time than now to contact a trusted defense attorney. In the Orlando area, The Umansky Law Firm is the most trusted defense team around. With more than 100 years of combined experience, they understand what it takes to create a viable defense strategy and remain committed to serving you.

Don’t let your life be defined by a single mistake. Call the trusted attorneys at The Umansky Law Firm at 407-228-3838 to schedule your free consultation. We look forward to talking with you soon.