This week a federal court ruled that Harrah's in Atlantic City was not legally obligated to cut off a problem gambler from betting, as he racked up $188,000 in debt to the resort.
Massimo Dangelico had sued to have his $188,000 debt at the casino wiped out, claiming that Harrah's had an obligation to stop him from accruing the debt. He claims that his name was on a "central credit registry" and that this puts the blame on the casino for his actions. Unfortunately for Dangelico, he never placed himself on New Jersey's self-exclusion list, which stands as the only method that legally compels casinos to stop a player from gambling.
A judge ruled that Harrah's had not been proven to have shown negligence, as they haven't seen proof that the casino knew Dangelico is a problem gambler. The judge also said that the Plaintiff should have reported his actions to the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, something he never did.
The court laid another big smack to Dangelico, ruling: "Even if he is a compulsive gambler, defendant cites no authority for the proposition that proof of that condition alone demonstrates incapacity to enter into an agreement to borrow funds for gambling. Compulsiveness does not belie understanding the nature and effect of one's actions."
"We do not depreciate the financial ruin that may befall compulsive gamblers and their dependents. However, Harrah's is in the business of operating casino gambling; defendant is its customer. The relationship is built on enabling gaming, not withholding it."
With the ruling, the Plaintiff is now on the hook for the full sum of a previous judgment that Harrah's obtained against him.