The question of legality in office pools is a major concern for the year round commish. Nobody wants to get in legal trouble for having a little fun around the office. The rules vary from state to state but there are a few things a commish can do to make sure their office pools are on the up and up.
My seven steps to a LEGAL office pool:
1) Don’t take a cut.
2) Distribute all the money brought in from the pool.
3) Make sure everyone participating in the pool is over 21.
4) Make sure everyone is on equal terms.
5) Don’t set up a special website that you take money from people.
6) Keep the number of people and cost reasonable (under $500 total).
7) Check you company or your state’s policy on social gambling – State Gambling Law by State
From my research, I found that office pools are legal in most states as long as they are more for fun than anything else.
Here is another site for information on the legality of office pools.