Any activity that involves the elements of prize, chance and consideration is gambling and illegal unless authorized by Wisconsin Law. (For example, raffles and bingos are permitted for certain qualifying nonprofit organizations, if they obtain the required licensing, so they are not considered “gambling.”) If all three elements are present then the activity is considered an unlawful lottery. Consideration, with some limited exceptions, is defined as anything that is a commercial or financial advantage to the promoter, or a disadvantage to a participant; money, canned goods, clothing, anything of value. Prize is generally defined as something of value and may be a variety of things like money, property, parking stall for a week, vacation day, etc. The most common question is whether the activity involves chance. This element is present if chance, rather than skill, redominates. Conversely, if an activity predominately involves skill, then it would not meet the statutory definition. Skill based games would include paying to guess the number of marbles in a jar, pool, darts, bean bag toss, etc. and would be legal for individuals, businesses, non-profit organization’s to conduct without any license requirements. Considered predominately games of chance are the following and more; most card games (particular poker, Texas Hold-Em), cow pie bingo, dice games, paddle wheels, quarter auctions, etc. An activity is unlawful only if all three elements are present. If one of the elements is not present, then the activity is not an unlawful lottery. For example, an activity that does not involve the awarding of a prize or does not involve any consideration to participate would not be unlawful. Also note that it is not legal to conduct progressive raffles or Queen of Heart raffles. When a ticket is drawn the winner wins the prize, they do not get a chance to win a bigger prize or for the bigger prize to continue to roll over each week/month until someone finally wins.