New Jersey Judge Rules Casinos Not Liable for Compulsive Bettors

New Jersey Judge Rules Casinos Not Liable for Compulsive Bettors

Last Updated: Feb 8th, 2024
New Jersey Judge Rules Casinos Not Liable for Compulsive Bettors

According to a ruling from US District Court Judge Madeline Cox Arleo, Atlantic City casinos and NJ online casinos aren’t legally required to stop those with gambling issues from wagering.

Complaint Decision 

On January 31, the judge dismissed a complaint by Sam Antar against Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa and its parent company, MGM Resorts International. In the complaint, Antar said that the casino had him gambling even when they were aware of his addiction.

In the documents, Antar notes he placed over 100,000 bets for approximately $30 million in person at Borgata and online at BetMGM Casino. 

In her decision, she wrote that the gaming law in the state “pervasively regulates the responsibilities of casinos as they relate to compulsive gamblers but is notably silent on whether casinos or online gambling platforms may induce people who present with compulsive gambling behavior to patronize their businesses,” the judge wrote in her decision.

Similar Complaints Dismissed in the Past

She also cited two other similar complaints that were ultimately dismissed. 

Cox Arleo added, “The New Jersey Legislature…has not yet seen fit to require casinos to prevent or stop inducing gambling from those that exhibit problem gambling behavior. As a matter of law, defendants (casinos, gambling operators) do not owe a negligence common law duty of care to plaintiffs.”

At online casinos, there are a plethora of responsible gaming resources that can be used, including limits on your play, cool-down periods, and self-exclusionary measures. This likely could’ve played into the ruling as casinos provide the tools for those who knowingly have problematic gambling histories to enact these measures. 

Antar was recently released from prison in March 2023 on an embezzlement charge, one that he says he committed to satisfy his addiction. According to The Associated Press, Antar is “currently free under an intensive supervision program and says he has been informally counseling young people with gambling problems.”

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