Voidable Betting Transactions

As featured in the latest edition of the QHAMagazine

With technological and sociological advancements, all retailers and providers have been forced to consider a revamp of their services and the mediums through which those services are provided to the public. This is no different for hotel operators, who have had to continue to evolve their offerings in order to meet the changing demands of their patrons. With such advancements have also come various methods and offerings through which patrons may get involved in wagering.

Wagering is offered by a variety of providers throughout Queensland and Australia through in-person and online services. The essence of wagering is the investing of money on an event or contingency with the hope of a return on the investment based on the result or outcome of that event or contingency. The investment may either yield some or no returns depending on the wager (including the amount of the wager) and the outcome of the event or contingency.

There are many ways through which a person may utilise the services of wagering providers to make a wager, including in-person, by telephone, through an automated device or online. All of these methods may be susceptible to some form of error, whether it be of a technical or clerical nature, which could result in a person engaging in wagering to seek a return that is more than the expected return for which they betted.

For example, a person may wager on a sporting event and choose to place their wager online. The intended wager is for $10.00 with an expected return of $100.00, however, due to a system fault the wager is recorded as $100.00 with only $10.00 being deposited. In the event the player has a winning bet, they may claim for a larger return than they are entitled to.

The wagering provider may have their own terms and conditions which address such issues, however for the hotel operator, the problem is then whether they are required to pay the higher return to the player. This can be a difficult issue to navigate, as on the face of it, it would appear the player can claim and receive the higher return.

However, this is not correct. The return on the player’s investment is calculated from the amount of the investment. Where this has been recorded incorrectly due to a technical failure or other error, it will generally render the bet void with a refund of the amount the player actually wagered. This is regardless of whether the player offers to pay the difference for their actual investment and the investment recorded on their wager.

Betting providers will have extensive terms and conditions that will determine how such an issue may be resolved. It can also depend on whether the error is discovered before or after the event upon which the bet is placed has commenced. If you experience this issue, it is important to refer to the terms and conditions of the relevant betting provider and then to make a determination as to whether the bet is void.

“The content of this publication is for reference purposes only. It is current at the date of publication. This content does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Legal advice about your specific circumstances should always be obtained before taking any action based on this publication.”
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