Betting Operator Set to Pay Vulnerable Gambler More Than £100,000

  • 32-year-old man lost £134,000+ ($173,000+) gambling on casino games with unnamed company
  • His legal team secured out-of-court settlement of more than £100,000 ($129,000)
  • They argued operator failed to protect their client and breached UKGC social responsibility code
  • Considered landmark case for similar legal battles involving gambling companies
player losing while playing casino game on tablet
A major gambling operator in the UK has reached a settlement out of court that will see it pay more than £100,000 to a vulnerable gambler after it failed to protect him. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Out-of-court settlement reached

An unnamed betting operator in the UK has to pay a vulnerable problem gambler more than £100,000 ($129,000) after reaching a settlement out of court. The case saw a 32-year-old man lose just over £134,000 ($173,000) playing blackjack and roulette.

case saw a 32-year-old man lose just over £134,000 ($173,000)

The plaintiff’s legal team argued that the betting operator their client was using to rack up these losses was breaching the social responsibility code of the UK Gambling Commission. They stated he was clearly a vulnerable customer and the company did not protect him in any way. 

As part of the settlement, the betting firm cannot be legally named. 

A landmark case in the industry

The plaintiff’s solicitors, Ellis Jones, deemed it a landmark case with the largest settlement sum they have negotiated for a gambling dispute.

Henrietta Dunkley, one of the solicitors working on the case, said:

Ultimately we were able to negotiate and recover 89 per cent of our client’s net losses without having to pursue any court proceedings.”

She deemed this an outstanding result against a major gambling operator. The legal team hopes it can be a landmark case for other parties that find themselves in a similar position to their client. 

A major need to protect vulnerable gamblers

There has been an increased focus on how gambling companies identify and deal with problem gamblers. Numerous operators are at the center of similar cases where they failed to identify players with a gambling problem, and even offered VIP perks such as free gifts and cashback bonuses.

Paul Kanolik, a partner in the Ellis Jones betting disputes team, said more action is needed to protect vulnerable gamblers. He added: “This fantastic result is reflective of a much wider recognition by the Gambling Commission and other organizations that more protection is needed for gambling customers, particularly those that display obvious signs of problem gambling.”

The impact of a new report on gambler protection

The news of this settlement comes shortly after the release of an interim report by a group of UK MPs. The document calls for widespread changes in the region’s gambling sector to help protect vulnerable people. 

MPs were critical of the Gambling Commission and called for a complete overhaul of the UK Gambling Act. Their report makes a number of other recommendations, such as a ban on using credit cards to gamble, as well as imposing a maximum stake of £2 ($2.58) on online casino games.