12 U.S. Code § 339 - Participation by State member banks in lotteries and related activities

(a) Prohibited activitiesA State member bank may not—
deal in bets used as a means or substitute for participation in a lottery;
announce, advertise, or publicize the existence of any lottery; [1]
announce, advertise, or publicize the existence or identity of any participant or winner, as such, in a lottery.
(b) Use of banking premises prohibitedA State member bank may not permit—
the use of any part of any of its banking offices by any person for any purpose forbidden to the bank under subsection (a), or
direct access by the public from any of its banking offices to any premises used by any person for any purpose forbidden to the bank under subsection (a).
(c) DefinitionsAs used in this section—
The term “deal in” includes making, taking, buying, selling, redeeming, or collecting.
(2) The term “lottery” includes any arrangement, other than a savings promotion raffle, whereby three or more persons (the “participants”) advance money or credit to another in exchange for the possibility or expectation that one or more but not all of the participants (the “winners”) will receive by reason of their advances more than the amounts they have advanced, the identity of the winners being determined by any means which includes—
a random selection;
a game, race, or contest; or
any record or tabulation of the result of one or more events in which any participant has no interest except for its bearing upon the possibility that he may become a winner.
The term “lottery ticket” includes any right, privilege, or possibility (and any ticket, receipt, record, or other evidence of any such right, privilege, or possibility) of becoming a winner in a lottery.
The term “savings promotion raffle” means a contest in which the sole consideration required for a chance of winning designated prizes is obtained by the deposit of a specified amount of money in a savings account or other savings program, where each ticket or entry has an equal chance of being drawn, such contest being subject to regulations that may from time to time be promulgated by the appropriate prudential regulator (as defined in section 5481 of this title).
(d) Lawful banking services connected with operation of lottery

Nothing contained in this section prohibits a State member bank from accepting deposits or cashing or otherwise handling checks or other negotiable instruments, or performing other lawful banking services for a State operating a lottery, or for an officer or employee of that State who is charged with the administration of the lottery.

(e) Regulations; enforcement

The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System shall issue such regulations as may be necessary to the strict enforcement of this section and the prevention of evasions thereof.

(Dec. 13, 1913, ch. 6, § 9A, as added Pub. L. 90–203, § 2, Dec. 15, 1967, 81 Stat. 609; amended Pub. L. 113–251, § 3(b), Dec. 18, 2014, 128 Stat. 2889.)

[1]  So in original. The word “or” probably should appear.
Editorial Notes

Section was enacted as section 9A of act Dec. 13, 1913, and not as part of section 9 of such act which comprises this subchapter.


2014—Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 113–251, § 3(b)(1), inserted “, other than a savings promotion raffle,” before “whereby” in introductory provisions.

Subsec. (c)(4). Pub. L. 113–251, § 3(b)(2), added par. (4).

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Effective Date

Section effective Apr. 1, 1968, see section 6 of Pub. L. 90–203, set out as a note under section 25a of this title.

The following state regulations pages link to this page.