The US Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling earlier this month that American plaintiffs are not entitled to get their day in American courts for discrepancies with offshore online poker sites.
This case specifically addressed two players in Ohio who sued PartyPoker claiming collusion. However, the court ruled, and the Appeals court upheld: Sorry, take your beefs against Party to Gibraltar. When they signed on and agreed to play, they did so accepting Terms and Conditions agreeing to handle all disputes in Gib, nowhere else, the court said.
Here’s the tale from poker-law expert I. Nelson Rose:
Trial in Gibraltar or Jail in Ohio
In it …
But the concurring opinion of Judge Merritt, quoted above, should give all Internet poker operators and players some nightmares. He ruled that the case had to be heard in Gibraltar, because to allow Ohio state law to apply would mean Wong, Gibson and everyone working for Party Poker would have to go to jail!
No one had raised the issue of whether Internet poker was illegal. â€œBut sometimes courts have to raise embarrassing questions that both parties to litigation had rather we overlooked.â€
Not so sure I agree that this decision “should give all Internet poker operators some nightmares.” I think it’s kinda the opposite. With Full Tilt juggling cases of varying frivolity out the ying-yang, I gotta think they’d be pretty happy with what could be precedent to force plaintiffs to take up matters outside (the US).
Party Gaming’s stock, btw, has been doing quite nicely of late: