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Alabama State Lotteries Laws

Created byВ FindLaw’s team of legal writers and editors | Last updated June 20, 2016

Most U.S. states manage an official lottery with the stated purpose of raising revenue for education or some other specific public benefit. In reality, much of the revenue from state lotteries goes directly into the general fund. State lotteries usually include a combination of number drawings (the player picks a string of numbers) and instant-win tickets (the player scratches off a ticket to see if they’ve won). A majority of states that have a state lottery also participate in multi-state games. The odds of hitting a jackpot in any lottery are extremely low, but smaller prizes (such as free tickets and $100 prizes) are much more common.

Is the Lottery Legal in Alabama?

Alabama is one of just a few states where lotteries are not allowed. AlongВ with Mississippi and Utah, Alabama’s prohibition on a state lottery is strongly rooted in religious objections. But there have been efforts to change that in Alabama, even though it would require a constitutional amendment.

Alabama’s constitution expressly prohibits the establishment of a state lottery. Article IV, В§65 states: “The legislature shall have no power to authorize lotteries or gift enterprises for any purposes, and shall pass laws to prohibit the sale in this state of lottery or gift enterprise tickets. “

But there have been attempts to legalize an official state lottery in Alabama. In 2015, citing aВ revenue shortfall of more than $260 million,В Alabama lawmakersВ proposed legislation that would legalize a state lottery and casino-style gambling. As of May 2015, two separate lotteryВ bills were introduced, one intended to set aside money for the education trust fund and another that would divert revenue into the general fund.

Code Section Prohibited: Art. IV В§65 AL Constitution
Distribution of Lottery Revenue
Additional Purpose of Lottery
Lottery Prize Subject to Garnishment
Time Limit to Claim Prize/Disposition
Prohibited Related Activities

Note: State laws are never set in stone and are always subject to change, primarily through new legislation, ballot initiatives, or rulings from higher courts. You may want to contact an Alabama gaming attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Research the Law

  • Alabama Law
  • Official State Codes – Links to the official online statutes (laws) in all 50 states and DC.

Chart providing details of Alabama State Lotteries Laws