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  #1  
Old 19th March 2009
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CCC-Ramsar CCC-Ramsar is offline
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Question Slot Machine Malfunction - Who is responsible?

If a slot machine malfunctions and announces a win of $43 Million, should the casino pay up? Their offer - 4 free buffet dinners!

"A Wasaga Beach retiree is suing the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation for a total of $45.9 million after he claims he won big on a slot machine only to be offered a few free buffet dinners."

http://www.torontosun.com/news/canad...89406-sun.html
http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Canada/2...81771-sun.html

Any thoughts?
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  #2  
Old 22nd March 2009
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Cool malfunction

Slot machines are just that, a machine and subject to malfunctions. In our present society whereby litigation is the first resort of many customers, any casino that does not have sufficient signage stating "malfunction voids all pays and plays" deserves what it gets. It is a sorry fact but a true one that the image of our business needs a makeover and until we start addressing this and convince the public that we are a transparent and clean industry we will always be prey to the assumptions that we are still all working for Al capone types and that our only aim is to rip people off. One just has to look at the British press who have taken to calling casino's Gambling Dens to see what state our image is in.
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  #3  
Old 11th October 2009
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depends

If the winning sybmbols are lined up correctly with the correct bet amount shown I would say the casino should pay regardless of the amount and the fact that all machines say malfunction voids all pays and plays. It could end up costing alot more..... Good luck to the guy...... However in legal terms I don't think he has much of a chance..... power to the people!!!!
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  #4  
Old 4th November 2009
Victoria Victoria is offline
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Not as clear as it appears

A machine malfunctions, results in an undeserved jackpot so the casino is off the hook for payment.
This sounds logical and correct but add a variable or two and think about it more.

The casino has known that the machine was malfunctioning for a period of time and did not remove it from the floor or unplug it. Should they be responsible for paying in this situation?

What happens to a machine that has a malfunction that prevents it from paying any big jackpots? Is it ever repaired? Is it ever removed? Does anyone ever really look into it as they would look at a machine that pays too much?

A story related somewhat to my second example:
At a major Vegas casino I went to an area that had some Super Times Pay video poker. For those not familar with those machines; on an average of every 15 hands a 2,3,4,5,8 or 10 times multiplyer would apply to a hand. You might get two or three in a row and then might not see one for 100 hands but it would average one of fifteen. For this you pay an extra coin per line.
I noticed a machine that was out of order and jokingly said to a player playing the machine next to it, "did it hit so many jackpots that they unplugged it?"
He told me he had played it for over 2 1/2 hours, put around $5,000 into it and it had never hit a single multiplyer. He mentioned this to a slot clerk who did not reply and then he went to dinner. When he returned the machine was out of action and he asked a supervisor about it and mentioned his problem and the amount of money he had put into it. The supervisor did ask his name, nor his player card account number but did offer him a free buffet??????
Was the multiplyer aspect of the machine malfunctioning? Was the man paying an extra coin per line for something that would never happen? How many hands of video poker can one play in 2 1/2 hours and what are the odds of a functioning machine never showing a single multiplyer? Should the casino have returned the extra bet to this person? Would any casino return those bets even if they became fully aware of the malfunction? Would a casino continue to keep this machine operating till someone complained even though they knew the machine was malfunctioning?

There is very little that is black and white, but there is an awful load of gray.

Victoria
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  #5  
Old 5th November 2009
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Talking This sounds serious!!!!

mmmmmm Hi Victoria you're right when you mention the "Grey areas" but alot of payouts are made because of the gray area and alot are avoided because of the grey area.... Does that make any sense!!!!! Quoting the wise and wonderful Rolling Stones, "you can't always get what you want..... you can't always get what you please, but if you try sometimes.... you'll find.... you get what you need........" Or does that make even less sense..... Maybe it should be, "you can please some people all of the time but you can't please all the people all of the time..." (Bob Marley -ish) Improvisation is not only for stand up comedians, it's definately part of the Casino business... and we really try to please the customers.....honest!!!!!!
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  #6  
Old 5th November 2009
SCSLOTS SCSLOTS is offline
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Wink the Great British Press

Stevey B

The British press you say.......mmmmm I love the British Press, they are definately not happy unless they're insulting someone or keeping the wool over the average Joe Blogg's eyes.... Rule Britania but the press can kiss my a**
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  #7  
Old 5th November 2009
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Talking Sin City

and if you want a clean image for the Casino business, try another business, because most people go to Vegas to escape, to feel wild to commit Sin..... within the law lol!!!!!! and that includes me.....
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  #8  
Old 13th November 2009
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I'm another that's astonished at some casino's reactions to machine malfunctions. In the case of a machine erroneously flashing a multi-million payout, i disagree with scslots about paying whatever is shown, but i can't see why management doesn't just pay out whatever the machine max is. Suggesting a free lunch would tilt me for sure.

We had a situation here where one of our big slots players had his machine lock-up at the start of a bonus phase. After the tech looked at it and declared it was a software glitch and couldn't be rectified, we (managers) all sat down and thought about the best response. In the end we went to the guy and explained the situation, told him it couldn't be fixed, and gave him back his entire drop. He was happy with that, and we didn't lose a customer.
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  #9  
Old 30th March 2010
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Arrow $42 million this time

Another slot malfunction story has hit the press. This time it's in Colorado on a penny machine and the players expected payout is 4,200,000,000 pennies.

Woman denied $42,000,000 in slot machine ‘malfunction’
http://www.myfoxboston.com/dpp/morni...stake-20100329


"People were coming up to me and saying I won $42 million" Chavez told KDRV FOX31 . "Lights were flashing, it sounded like a fire truck, the screen said 'see attendant.'"

But the staff at the Fortune Valley Casino says the machine malfunctioned and Chavez wasn't a winner at all.

Chavez did get a complimentary room, free breakfast and the $23 that she originally gambled. She says she will continue to push for that big jackpot.




The slot model and manufacturer are not given which is a pity as I could probably give you the link with the actual top payout.

A little research on Google under the term "slot malfunction" reveals these cases.


Casino: $166M Win Was Slot Malfunction
http://www.wftv.com/news/21501235/detail.html

OLG offers slot player free dinner instead of $43M
http://montreal.ctv.ca/servlet/an/lo...TorontoNewHome

Winner refuses $20,000 slots jackpot, files suit
http://www.allbusiness.com/legal/leg...1938956-1.html

Jackpot or Mistake? Man Sues Over $1.6M 'Jackpot'
http://abcnews.go.com/TheLaw/story?id=3772215&page=1

Loose slots?: Machine malfunction costs casino $487,000
http://www.courierpress.com/news/200...-costs-casino/

Casino Error Voids Man's $102,000 Pa. Jackpot
http://kdka.com/local/casino.slot.ma....2.387242.html

Slot player continues legal battle over disputed jackpot
http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2000...er-disputed-j/

Jackpot winner played machine despite knowing about malfunction
http://www.reviewjournal.com/lvrj_ho...s/7030236.html



There are almost certainly many more cases out there but the bigger the disputed amount the more press coverage it will appear to gain.

http://www.google.com/search?q=slot%...&ned=us&tab=nw

I'm not sure however if press coverage ends up correlating with the punters chances of getting paid !


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  #10  
Old 31st March 2010
redcarded1 redcarded1 is offline
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An obvious malfunction that can be clearly identified will surely never get paid ?

Think of it this way. If you go to an ATM and find that £42 million has suddenly been put in your current account...... the bank will soon take it back !
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  #11  
Old 22nd April 2010
Patrick_d Patrick_d is offline
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Smile 42 million Jackpot

The 42 million issue Is quite easy to explain, the size of the internal meter of the machine is 2^32 = 42,959, xxx When a machine is heavily played and the total numbers of bets exceeds this amount the meter will restart from 0 .

When the machine calculates the difference it end up with a negative of 42milllion

So it will show - call attendant for hand payment

but there are no winning combinations on the machine, so the Malfunction is obvious.
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  #12  
Old 23rd April 2010
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Question Obvious malfunction ?

Hello Patrick,

Welcome to the forum.
A malfunction may be obvious for a tech or casino management to see but if all of a sudden a mega number appears in the slots display along with the term "call attendant for hand payment" how's a player supposed to react ?


Seems to me like poor or sloppy programming & design. Especially now that there are casino and group wide programmes that award mystery or random bonuses to slot players.


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  #13  
Old 23rd April 2010
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More details on this story

The Post-Tribune has an article on the $42 million jackpot and according to the author the player has been offered $23 + comps.


$42.9 million malfunction nets frustrated player $23 plus comps
http://www.post-trib.com/lifestyles/...ki0423.article


As the article says though - sometimes casinos pay when there's a mechanical or programming error.
Perhaps not this one however !


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  #14  
Old 24th October 2011
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Lightbulb Austrian slot jackpot - Euro 42.9 million

Here's a video out of Austria about a contested jackpot from March 2011 this year at Casino Bregenz. Interestingly the amount is almost identical to the one in Canada - $42.9 million and Euro 42.9 million.


Schweizer gewinnt 43 Mio Euro bei Casinos Austria- Kurz danach erhielt er HAUSVERBOT.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mJe9YkAo7M





And another in Colorado from March 2010 also for $42 million...

Woman Wins $42 Million Jackpot? Not So Fast
http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/colorado-4...ry?id=10235836


This has to be something more than a coincidence.


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  #15  
Old 24th October 2011
Victoria Victoria is offline
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Not an answer since 2009

I have been staying away because I am very busy and because no one really wants the other side of the story,

While a malfunction that causes an unearned jackpot like those mentioned should not be paid. No one addressed the malfunctioning machine that does not pay properly.
The example I used was a real one, in a location where the games are not really regulated by the government except by the government of the owning native tribe. Had not that person playing complained, my best guess is the machine stays as is forever. His complaint was recognized by them placing an out of order sign on it but the extra money he put into it was not addressed.

If this is the practice of this casino, it would only seem fair that the pay an unearned jackpot and then also put the machine out of order.

Besides the house advantage, this casino is playing an unequal game of fairness to itself and not to a player who loses extra because of a malfunction.

What no slot manager will ever do:
Upon discovery of a malfunctioning machine that would not pay jackpots, though he may have the machine repaired, he/she would never go through the machines memory and offer anything to unknowing customers who lost during the malfunctioning period. With the use of players cards today this can be done. Why is it not done???

You have nothing to grip about when a machine malfunctions in a players favor till you work both ways. It is your machine. You brought it into the casino, the player did not. The player trusted you, but are your worthy of that trust?

Last edited by Victoria; 24th October 2011 at 11:54 PM. Reason: wrong word
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  #16  
Old 11th November 2011
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Lightbulb Singapore paying up

Interestingly in Singapore a player who was initially told that her jackpot win was a malfunction will now be paid in full.

Woman to get full casino winnings after all
http://www.asiaone.com/News/AsiaOne%...09-309645.html

"The casino had initially refused to pay Ms Choo Hong Eng the 'cash bonus' of $416,742.11 that was displayed on the slot machine's screen on Oct 18, saying that the machine had a cash limit of $50,000, and the message was due to a malfunction. It offered to pay her $50,000 and give her a sports car worth $258,962."


The link above has so far had 135 comments and since the news broke back in October, there's been significant interest from the public and media. One thing is certain, there's sure to be another "malfunction" at either of the two IR's sooner or later, and a precedent has now been set.


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  #17  
Old 13th November 2011
Victoria Victoria is offline
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Do the best you can do to fix your machines

Ian

Often, for no other reason than public relations, these things should be paid. Unless casino management can offer proof that there are no malfunctioning machines whose malfunction causes big wins to never happen.
What does management do in the case of a machine that after a long period of time always hold more than twice what every other identical machine holds?
Where I used to work they did nothing but they carefully would check a machine that seemed to consistantly pay too much.

My money says that every casino does just what my old casino did unless a regulartory authority brings pressure.

I believe machine errors/malfunctions can happen and will happen in both the casino's and the player's favor. If the casino can get a correction when it happens in the player's favor, why can't the player get a correction when it happens in the casino's favor.
The answer is simple: Because the player has no way of knowing!

Choice should be: Fix or get better machines or pay the lady.

Victoria
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  #18  
Old 12th December 2011
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Arrow Casinos Austria malfunction

The Casinos Austria story of the Swiss Kosovan and his alledged jackpot win (see above) is far from over and a court case in January looks likely.

Man wins £37m fruit machine jackpot... but is offered £60 and a free meal instead
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...l-instead.html
"Despite only getting four of the slot machine's five required matches, Mr Merlaku was told he had won the massive jackpot - complete with a winning bell and flashing screen."

A search for "Behar Merlaku" on Google reveals an amazing 872,000 results.

There's also apparently an image out there of the winning combination which is certainly going to be interesting to see.


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Last edited by ian; 15th December 2011 at 10:11 PM. Reason: Edited out name of slot manufacturer
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  #19  
Old 12th July 2012
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Austrian Provincial Court

The Behar Merlaku/Casinos Austria case has been in the Austrian courts over the last few days however the process has been postponed once again. There's also a mystery surrounding the production of a 22 minute video featuring Merlaku which is apparently highly critical of the state monopoly.


Casino will 43 Millionen Euro Gewinn nicht zahlen
http://www.welt.de/regionales/muench...ht-zahlen.html

Video sorgt vor Jackpot-Prozess für Wirbel
http://www.heute.at/news/oesterreich/art23655,739328

Wirbel um Video vor Jackpot-Prozess
http://vorarlberg.orf.at/news/stories/2539710/

„Casino-Pechvogel“: Prozess erneut vertagt
http://vorarlberg.orf.at/news/stories/2540150/


Complicated stuff.


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  #20  
Old 15th August 2012
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There is a diclaimer printed on each machine.
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  #21  
Old 15th August 2012
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Arrow Disclaimers

Croup,

Disclaimers are often posted on slots at the place of manufacture and an individual machine may change locations and have on-site software upgrades installed several times over it's lifespan.

The so called disclaimer may also be in a different language from the official casino or game language. If the disclaimer, sometimes worded "malfunctions void all payouts" or something similar, was written in English would that be legally binding in a French or German speaking location. ?

I don't know, I'm not a lawyer.


When there's Euro 43 Million on the line nothing is ever going to be black and white.


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  #22  
Old 22nd August 2012
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Lightbulb Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

Singapore's casinos although posting massive results also seem to kept on a tight reign by the Casino Control Authority.

Here's the latest headline.

Casino operators pay the penalty, $500,000 for breaches
http://www.straitstimes.com/breaking...aches-20120822

To keep the thread on topic here's the result of a slot malfunction at Marina Bay Sands from October 2011 where a car was supposed to be the prize but instead a win of S$416,742.11 was displayed.


"MBS was censured for wrongly displaying a winning message on one of its jackpot machines. Last October, vegetarian foodstall owner Madam Choo Hong Eng's prize should have been a car, but a message awarding her $416,742.11 in winnings flashed instead. The casino operator offered her a sum of $50,000 and a car worth $258,962 at first, but ultimately gave in and awarded her her full winnings."


Interesting Jackpot - a Car and Cash worth less than what the machine was perhaps originally programmed to payout.


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  #23  
Old 9th October 2012
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Lightbulb Austria - Euro 1 million payout

The Austrian "slot malfunction" case has now come to a conclusion with local media reporting Behar Merlaku has accepted a Euro 1 million settlement.


Softwarefehler: Casino zahlt 1 Million Euro
http://www.vol.at/softwarefehler-cas...n-euro/3379373

Slot machine punter accepts one million settlement
http://www.austriantimes.at/news/Gen...ion_settlement


The settlement perhaps proves that the statement often written somewhere on a gaming machine that 'malfunctions void all payouts' isn't always legally enforceable.

As I mentioned earlier. Slots are often modified, re-programmed, change owners and moved from location to location several times during their working life, so in the case of a machine not under warrantly or in it's original certified factory state then any message placed on that machine at manufacture is likely to become invalid.

It's not the customers fault if a supplier has installed the wrong chip or a faulty mainboard in a machine. Neither IMHO should they be denied a winning payout no matter how large or small as a result of that error.


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  #24  
Old 8th January 2013
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Lightbulb Viatnamese casino told to pay U.S. $55 Million

The South China Morning Post reports that a court in Ho Chi Minh City has ruled that a jackpot of U.S. $55 Million won at the Sheraton Hotel in 2009 should be paid to the player.

The payout being ordered despite the owners claiming that the maximum jackpot on that machine was just U.S. $46k.


Slot machine 'mistake' costs Vietnamese casino US$55 million
http://www.scmp.com/news/asia/articl...o-us55-million

www.sheraton.com/saigon


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  #25  
Old 14th January 2013
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Question New World Record Casino Win ?

I hadn't thought about it at the time but if the payment of $55.5 million is made in the Vietnam case it turns out that it will be a new world record jackpot payout.


$55.5 million casino case can set a world record
http://english.vietnamnet.vn/fms/spe...ld-record.html
"The world has recorded many stories about gamblers who only spent a very small amount, but won tens of millions of US dollars from the casino. The highest win so far is $40 million, of an American man named Archie Karas in 1995."


Defendant in $55 mln jackpot case exhibits game machine rules
http://talkvietnam.com/2013/01/defen.../#.UPQE4ncgFL4


I've got a feeling that this story has a long way to run yet.

Let's have a look at that Archie Karas story
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archie_Karas
http://pokerdb.thehendonmob.com/player.php?a=r&n=26078



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