Can a Felon Get a Nevada Gaming License?

If there is anything Nevada is famous for, it is its largest city, Las Vegas. The top gaming hub in the U.S., Las Vegas is famed for its gambling casinos and nightlife. The city never sleeps as it hosts a steady stream of visitors.

Gambling is legal in this state and highly regulated. For felons looking to join the business, one concern is key. Can a felon get a Nevada gaming license?

can a felon get a evada gaming license

This query is vital given that many jobs in the gaming industry require a license. This includes those that work tables at casinos and businesses that host gaming services. Even just slot machines.

These licenses are processed by the Gaming Control Board and the local government. The work cards are then issued through the police. Here we will focus mainly on licenses for employees.

Those that wish to start a business that incorporates gaming also need licenses. For instance, if opening a bar with slot machines.

Those that want to have not more than 15 slot machines will require a restricted gaming license. Businesses that want more than this, or to manufacture slot machines, will require an unrestricted gaming license.

The purpose of the employee licenses is to help ensure professionalism in the business. Gambling has not always had a good reputation.

These licenses aid in keeping out bad elements. This includes criminals that can bring the business into disrepute.

There are different types of employee licenses, which we will discuss below.

Types of Employee Licenses

can the felon get evada gaming license

There are three basic types of gaming employee licenses. It is vital to check what kind of job you are applying for to know which license to apply for. Your employer can help in determining this.

The first is the key gaming employee. There are two variations to this license.

There is a key executive license. It is for senior management employees. Such as the auditor, chief financial officer, general manager, and chief of security.

The second variation is the standard level key gaming employee license. This is for lower-level staff that work around the gaming environment. This can include beverages manager, security officers, and credit officers.

Another type of license is a gaming employee license. This is issued to employees that are directly involved in gaming activities. This includes dealers, cashiers, and slot attendants.

The last type is the gaming service employee license. This applies to employees that do not work within the gaming area, but in structures that are related. This can include housekeepers, cooks, bartenders, and reception staff.

All these jobs are part of a major industry. Most of the jobs either relate to gaming or liquor.

Others can seem more outlying. Such as those in childcare, locksmiths, and pawnbrokers. Dozens of jobs in Nevada require a license.

So felons who may not necessarily want to work in the casinos may still need these permits. Working without a work card when it is required can lead to a misdemeanor. You can be punished with up to 6 months in jail and/or $1,000 in fines.

Background checks are a mandatory part of processing these applications. As such, some felons may find it tough to get approval. Let’s look at how to apply for these licenses.

Applying for A Nevada Gaming License

can felon get a evada gaming license

While there are different types of gaming licenses for employees, the application processes are similar.

It all begins with the employer. They will tell you if the job you are applying for requires a license. If it does, they will provide you a signed referral slip.

They will then guide you on how to get started by registering with the Nevada State Gaming Control board.

When submitting the paperwork, you will need to attach two forms of ID. You will also need to ensure you adhere to state requirements for the job. For instance, those that will handle liquor must be at least 21 years old.

You will need to complete the relevant forms and include the applicable fees. Know that the more senior the position, the more intense the vetting will be.

A criminal background check is part of the evaluation for all employees.

The application process will also include giving an interview. They will also take your fingerprints and your photograph.

Once you are approved for this license, you will receive it as a work card. Most licenses are valid for up to 5 years.

Can A Felon Get a Nevada Gaming License?

can felon get evada gaming license

Yes, a felon can get a Nevada gaming license. But there is concern given to the nature of the offense, severity, age, and if a repeat offender.

Crimes of theft are of particular concern. Those convicted of embezzlement, credit card fraud, or theft are counted here. More so if the crimes were committed in a casino.

These offenses make it likely your application will be denied. Those with violent offenses or sexual assault records are also often rejected. Drug-related crimes are also difficult in this business.

Since an interview is part of the application process, it is a chance for felons. You can make the case for your rehabilitation at this time, with supporting documents.

The longer it has been since you ended your sentence, the better. It is also best if you have not been a repeat offender. And, have built up a good work history.

The same applies to those applying for restricted or unrestricted licenses for business. These applications also include hearings and appeals processes. You can use this to defend your case and hopefully win approval.

While an expungement may help in most jobs, it does not have the same effect with licensing. Because the background check is conducted by federal authorities, your history will still be uncovered.

Being truthful is a must as false statements on your application may be considered fraud. And this could be punishable with prosecution and jail time.

It can also be hard to get approval if you have had previous work cards revoked. Note that even if you get a work card, becoming a felon afterward can lead to revocation.


It is vital, to be honest when applying for a license. The background check is highly comprehensive. It is conducted by federal authorities so no need to hide anything.

Depending on the job, they may go beyond the criminal background check. They may also delve into your financial and credit history. They will verify your academic qualifications and work history.

This probing is done to protect the integrity of the business. Those with criminal pasts and financial problems are likely to be a problem. So for felons, it can be helpful to ensure your financial affairs are in order.

While being a felon does not automatically deny you a license, some offenses can. Those convicted of violent and sexual offenses are less likely to be approved. The same goes for those convicted of financial crimes.

It is advisable to consider if your crimes relate in any way to the job you are seeking. For instance, someone convicted of sexual offenses should not expect to get a license to work in childcare.

If you find it difficult to secure a license in Nevada, do consider other options. There are many other alternative jobs felons can more easily secure to make a good living.

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