It is a surprise for most people to learn that not repaying a gambling debt to a Las Vegas casino is a felony with steep penalties and a sentence of prison time.
When you gamble in a Nevada casino on credit, it is called using a “marker.” To get one, you have to sign a blank check at the casino cage. If you do not repay your marker, the casino will cash your check, which will probably bounce. The casino will usually send you a warning letter before cashing the check – after all, they want to be paid, not have to get involved in a court proceeding. Ideally, a debtor will hire me, Nevada attorney Ryan Alexander, to negotiate their debt before the check is tendered to the bank. I’ve negotiated repayment and reduced payments on many accounts at Nevada casinos, including debts in excess of $500,000.
If the debtor has not made arrangements with the casino and the check bounces, the casino then presents the check to the Bad Check Unit at the Clark County District Attorney’s office. The District Attorney then increases the amount owed by 10% and begins bad check felony prosecution. Here is the statute. A warrant is then issued for their arrest. If a person is arrested on the warrant that is issued (usually from a traffic stop), bail is usually set at the total amount owed; arrangements can be made to quash warrants on bad checks. I have successfully quashed warrants and resolved bad check cases in Clark County, including dismissals of all charges.
If you owe money to a casino in Nevada and need to make payment arrangements or a settlement, or if you have already been charged with a bad check felony for a marker, then call attorney Ryan Alexander at (702) 868-3311.