What are Casino Markers and How They Work
As all Nevada residents know the casinos want nothing more than to make gambling and losing money as easy as possible.
So all casinos issue what’s known as a marker, this is a line of credit issued by the casino to a patron for the use of gambling.
This allows customers to get fast cash and not carry large sums of money.
These lines of credit are usually interest free and are issued after filing out a credit application.
But as easy and as fun as this might be, markers are debts that are required to be repaid.
Casino markers not repaid to the casino within 30 days is usually a criminal offense in Nevada and can range from a misdemeanor to a felony depending on the amount of the marker taken out.
Call the Defenders today if you need help with a casino marker.
Nevada Law For Casino Markers
Nevada takes not repaying casino markers seriously. In Nevada it is basically considered bank fraud if the casino tries to deposit the check and there is insufficient funds to collect the debt.
The law presumes that the person has intent to defraud if there is insufficient funds when the casino tries to redeem the marker from the patrons bank.
NRS 205.130 states that “[A] person who willfully, with an intent to defraud, draws or passes a check or draft to obtain … [c]credit extended by any licensed gaming establishment … when the person has insufficient money, property or credit with the drawee of the instrument to pay it in full upon its presentation, is guilty[.]”
So basically all they have to prove is that you had insufficient funds in your bank when the casino tried to pass or redeem the marker.
Once the 30 days has passed and the marker is not repaid it is automatically turned over to the D.A’s office for prosecution.
If you have an outstanding casino marker and have received a notice from the Clark County Courts you should call the Defenders immediately.
We offer a free review of your case and can help you navigate the court system.
What’s The Criminal Penalties for Unpaid Casino Markers in Nevada
In other states not paying a casino marker may not be a crime.
In Nevada however it is considered like bank fraud to not repay a casino marker.
The penalties for unpaid markers are dependent on the amount of the marker taken out.
Less than $1200.00- This is considered a misdemeanor and punishable by up to 6 months in jail and up to a $1000 in fines and restitution for the debt
$1200.00 or more- This is considered a felony and punishable by 1-4 Years in State prison, restitution for the debt, up to a $5000.00 fine at the judges discretion.
Each unpaid marker is a separate crime.
So if you have two unpaid markers even at the same casino they are considered separate and therefore the charges you may face are two separate charges.
Casinos and the D.A’s office realize that these are non-violent offenses and would rather resolve them and get their money back than send someone to state prison.
So having a reliable defense attorney to help mitigate the circumstances can be priceless.
Having an expert on casino markers can even keep you out of jail.
Call the Defenders today if you have an unpaid casino marker.
What Happens When a Casino Marker is Unpaid
Before the unpaid markers end up in the courts the casino’s may do a few things to try and get paid.
The following MUST occur before the debt is sent to the courts.
- A casino usually gives you 30 days to repay a marker. Once that time has passed they will attempt to resubmit the check to your bank to take the funds.
- If the second attempt to get the debt repaid results in insufficient funds the casino will send a certified letter. This letter will give the patron a certain amount of time to repay the pay loan directly to the casino , usually ten days.
- If at this point the marker is still unresolved then the casino submits a bad check complaint to the D.A’s office. Essentially the D.A’s office now becomes the debt collector and the patron will have to pay any restitution to the D.A’s office and the courts.Just like any other debt collector the D.A’s office assesses additional fees onto the original debt as time progresses.
- The D.A’s office will now decide whether or not to prosecute. At this time they will send a final certified letter and give you another ten days to repay the marker to the D.A’s office. If this debt is not repaid at this time an arrest warrant will be issued.
- Once an arrest warrant is issued for an unpaid casino marker the police aren’t out searching for you since again this is a non-violent offense. Usually arrests occur when you are stopped for a traffic violation. At this point you should call The Defenders. Once an arrest warrant is issued for your arrest you should hire an expert in casino marker defense. Call the Defenders today for a free case review. If you have been arrested for non-payment of a casino marker, have the Defenders on your side.
What are the Common Defenses in a Casino Marker Case
Since Nevada assumes that you are attempting to defraud a casino if insufficient funds are the reason for an unpaid marker there are only two real defenses.
- The marker was invalid or,
- There was no intent to defraud
To prove the marker was invalid the following must occur.
- Marker does not show- The payee, the date, the amount or the defendant signature either at all or in legible condition
- Pre-dated or Post-Dated check or if an agreement was made to hold the check for a future date.
- The identity of the defendant is in question
- The original marker was altered or considered fraudulent
- The marker was issued for a preexisting debt
If the Defenders can prove one or some of the above the court can likely dismiss the case.
To prove there was no intent to defraud the following must occur.
- The defendant has a long history of repaying markers at the casino
- The defendant fell ill after taking the marker and was unable to repay due to illness
- The casino issued the marker to an impaired person.
- The defendant had sufficient funds at the time the marker was taken
- Or the casino knowingly issued a marker to a person that did not have sufficient funds to repay the marker.
These are all difficult to prove in court. Only an experienced firm like the Defenders can apply these to your case and maybe even get it dismissed.
Other Consequences of Unpaid Casino Markers
Besides just criminal charges there are many other consequences for unpaid casino markers
- Civil Litigation- Not often, but sometimes casinos will take you to civil court to remedy the financial loss
- Debt relief- Nevada Does NOT allow a debt being litigated or a casino marker that is unpaid to be discharged in bankruptcy
- Criminal Record- Once convicted you will have a criminal record that will show up for several years if not forever on a background check – this can affect everything lie finding a job or buying a house for the future
- Deportation- if you are convicted of a felony and are an immigrant legally or not you can be deported since fraud is considered a crime of moral turpitude.
These are all some other major consequences of unpaid casino markers. You need an experienced defense team on your side called the Defenders today.