Is Card Counting Illegal?

Is Card Counting Illegal?

In almost every casino game, the casino will always have a higher house edge, leaving many gamblers empty pockets. However, there is one game, blackjack, where odds maybe in the player’s favor. You only have to learn how to count cards.

What is Card Counting, and How Does it Work

Card counting is a strategy in blackjack used to establish who between the dealer and the player has an edge on the next hand. Card counters try to overpower the casino house advantage by maintaining a continuous count of low and high-value cards dealt.

The card counting strategy does not need special tools but will only require you to use your brain. While playing, you will count and keep in touch with the number of small and big numbers left in the shoe or deck. By maintaining the tally, you will know which cards will likely come up for both the dealer and you in the next hand. This information will tell you when to place a big or a small bet.

Is Card Counting Illegal in Vegas?

Counting cards is a legal activity. No state or federal laws stipulate that counting cards is an offense. Police officers cannot arrest, nor can they convict you for any crime by counting cards. This is because responsible card counters only use their eyes and brains, so the court could not get any evidence that the players were cheating. Take a glance of how blackjack bet insurance work, it might go a long way to guaranteeing you more wins.

What will Happen if You are Caught Counting Cards?

Whether legal or not, most casinos do not appreciate card counting. If you need to count cards as your strategy, you should ensure you are not using external tools. You are not permitted to use a calculator or note down the numbers.

Mostly, card counting is done in teams; if you participate in a team count in Las Vegas casinos, you may be in trouble. Most of the time, if you are caught, casinos will ban you from setting foot in their property. If caught once, the casinos will ban you from ever playing on their premises. If caught more than twice counting cards, they will probably press charges against you for cheating or fraud.

The second option at the casino’s disposal is to call law enforcers, who will arrest you for card counting. The involvement of law enforcement means you could end up in jail with huge fines.

It is upon the judge to determine the charge type. A gross misdemeanor offense can land you in one year in prison and a $2000 fine, while a misdemeanor can land you six months in county jail and a $1000 fine.

Counting Cards Strategies

There are various counting card strategies which include.

  • Hi-Lo

In Hi-Lo, you will add +1 for cards 2-6. In the Ace, 10, and other face cards (high cards), you will add -1, while on cards 7, 8, and 9, you will add 0.

  • Hi-Opt 1

The highly Optimum card counting strategy has two alternatives, Hi-Opt I and Hi-Opt II. Though the Hi-Opt II is more advanced, they both apply similar principles.

In the Hi-Opt I strategy, cards 3-6, you will add +1, cards 2, 7, 8, 9, and A are regarded as 0, while cards 10, J, Q, and K you will subtract -1.

  • Hi-Opt II

This strategy is a little bit complex. You will add +2 for cards 4 and 5, for cards 2, 3, 6, and 7, you will add +1, for cards 8, 9, and A are 0, while cards 10, J, Q, and K, you -2. This technique is complex and is only used by seasoned card counters.

  • Knock Out

This system is also known as K-O and is an easy technique of card counting good for newbies. Though this system is easy to memorize, it is less accurate. The system is unbalanced since the final count will not equal zero after all cards have been dealt.

In the Knock Out system, the Aces, Kings, Jacks, and 10’s are allocated -1, cards 2-7 are given +1, and the 8’s and 9’s are assigned 0.

  • Red Seven

This system of card counting is also ideal for starters. The Red Seven is built on the principle of high v. low cards. You will add -1 for the high cards while you add +1 for the low-value cards. The 8’s and 9’s are considered neutral and are assigned 0.

The unique thing with this system is that colour plays a significant role in the 7’s, which is why it is called Red Seven. If the 7 is red, it is a low value, and you will add +1, and if it is black, it is regarded as neutral, which is assigned 0.

  • Omega II

This system is suitable for intermediate card counters. It has some cards which have 2 points while others have 1 point.

You will add +1 for cards 2, 3, and 7, while you will add +2 for low cards such as 4, 5, and 6. 9 is assigned -1, while 10’s and face cards are assigned -2. The 8’s and Aces are counted as 0.

  • Ace/Five

You will add 1 for a 5-value card dealt right from the beginning and add -1 when an Ace is dealt. You can double your wager if the final count is 2 or more, while you should avoid high bets if the count is 1 or lower.

  • Halves

This is one of the most complex card counting systems available. It is a three-level card counting system ideal for experts.

In Halves, you will add +1.5 for card 5, add +1 for cards 3, 4, and 6, add +0.5 for cards 2 and 7, add 0 for 8, add -0.5 for 9 and add -1 for cards 10, J, Q, K, and A. Although this system is complicated, it is very accurate when played with the common blackjack strategy and can create an essential edge over the casino. There are many skills to be on an advantage while in a casino, see how to trick slot machines.

Which Card Counting System is Best

The Hi-L0 is the most famous and efficient card counting system in blackjack. This system is ideal for both newbies and intermediate players.

Few Things to Know About Card Counting

  1. Card counting is simply using your brain and not cheating; therefore, it is legal in Vegas.
  2. Casinos can ask you to stop playing if you are caught card counting. This is the same way you will avoid playing 1-on-1 football against Lionel Messi because he is too good at it. The exact reason can cause Casinos to ban you from playing on their premises.
  3. You can make good money from card counting. Card counting gives you a significant edge against the house, which allows you to make good money.
  4. Avoid being caught. You should vary your bet when card counting. While this will lower your advantage, it will raise your card count cover-up. You should not double or triple your bet instantly as this will draw unwanted attention, and you risk being caught.

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