Gambler sues William Hill over losses

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2008/feb/14/gambling.law

Compulsive gambler sues bookmaker to recover losses

A compulsive gambler is suing a betting chain for negligence after losing 2m when he was supposed to be barred.

Greyhound trainer Graham Calvert, 28, from Tyne and Wear, wants William Hill to pay back his losses on the grounds it failed in its duty of care.

“If I’d known I had the problem and didn’t do anything about it, I would see myself as being 100% responsible,” he told the BBC. “The fact is that I did try to go through the right procedures and I was let down.”

Calvert said he told William Hill to ban him in May 2006 but later opened another account and lost 2m, including 347,000 on a bet that the US would win the Ryder Cup.

He was earning up to 30,000 a month from training greyhounds and had built up savings of nearly 700,000.

He began gambling in 2005 and was soon placing up to 20 bets a day at up to 30,000 a punt. In May 2006, he opened an account with William Hill. After placing some big bets and realising his habit was getting out of hand - he closed the account and claims he was offered “self exclusion” where an individual asks not to be allowed to place further bets.

Two months later, Calvert opened a new account with William Hill in his own name and went on to lose 2m.

His legal team claims William Hill was negligent in allowing him to continue to gamble after agreeing he would be self excluded and it should be held responsible for the consequences.

The case opens at the high court next week. William Hill said it would contest the allegations.

I hope to good god William Hill win this one. Big trouble if this bloke wins. Opens up a serious can of worms

I hope he wins as it’ll be a safety net for me if I ever feel an Oisn McConville coming on.

He knew the risks. Bookies cant be held responsible for a persons actions. If William Hill had refused to take his bets Im sure he would have went somewhere else. Also the comment he opened a new account in his own name baffled me and Flano when reading this story. What name did he use for the first account?

Presumably he used his own name both times and that’s the basis for his arguments. If he’d used someone else’s name then William Hill could have argued they’d no way of knowing it was the same guy. Because he used the same name he’s suggesting William Hill had a duty of care.

I don’t think he’ll win but I reckon there’ll be a greater onus on bookies in the future to monitor the activities of “problem gamblers” in the way that barmen aren’t supposed to serve drunk people. At the moment that’s just a self-regulation code of conduct (isn’t it?) but it may become part of a law.

This looks like a job for Alan Shore and Denny Crane!

[FONT=Verdana]“You hear the one about the fella who died, went to the pearly gates? St. Peter lets him in. Sees a guy in a suit making a closing argument. Says ‘Who’s that?’ St. Peter says, 'Oh, that’s God. Thinks he’s Denny Crane.”[/FONT]