A New York man’s lawsuit against three Atlantic City gambling companies was dismissed by the U.S. District Court in September 2022. The lawsuit was filed by compulsive gambler Sam Antar, who accused Borgata casino, its parent MGM Resort International, and its online partner Entain of enticing him to continue gambling despite being aware of his addiction. However, Judge Madeline Cox Arleo dismissed the lawsuit on January 31, 2024, citing the lack of obligation for casino operators to exclude compulsive gamblers under New Jersey law.
According to the judge, while New Jersey casino law regulates the responsibilities of casinos regarding compulsive gamblers, it does not impose an obligation on casinos to prevent individuals with problem gambling behavior from patronizing their businesses. As a result, she ruled that the defendants did not owe a negligence common law duty of care to the plaintiff. Similar cases across the country have also been dismissed, prompting Antar to announce that he would appeal the decision, calling for a change in the law to address the issue of gambling addiction.
Antar reportedly gambled $30 million over 100,000 bets during a nine-month period in 2019 and lost at least six figures, despite being part of a self-exclusion program for problem gamblers in New Jersey. He claimed that the defendants were aware of his addiction but continued to offer him opportunities to gamble. The lawsuit also included accusations of fraud and racketeering against the gambling companies.
The defendants cited a 2008 case where a federal judge ruled against a New York gambler who sued several Atlantic City casinos, claiming they were responsible for stopping her from losing nearly $1 million. MGM stated that they did not create or worsen Antar’s gambling problem. Antar, who has a history of fraudulent activities and served a prison sentence in 2013, plans to appeal the decision. MGM declined to comment on the case.