New Michigan Law Allows Removal of Names from Self-Exclusion List
Those who voluntarily banned themselves for life from Detroit’s three casinos will now be able to apply for removal from the self-exclusion list, according to a new Michigan state law.
Public Act 225 of 2020, sponsored by Rep. Ryan Berman of Commerce Township, will allow a person on the Disassociated Persons List maintained by the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) to ask the agency to take their name off the list. It’s the first time in nearly 20 years citizens who previously excluded themselves may apply for removal from the list after a minimum of five years.
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“Previously, the state used criminal law to combat a gambling problem for a lifetime, which is an expensive, harsh way to deal with an addiction,” Richard S. Kalm, executive director, MGCB, said in a news release Wednesday. “A lifetime ban actually may deter some people from signing up. For others, their life circumstances may have changed.
”Of course, people with gambling problems may request removal and resume behaviors they sought to prevent by going on the list. I’ve received many requests over the years from people on the Disassociated Persons List who wanted to remove their names, but state law did not offer the option until the new act was signed Oct.16.”
Supporters of the new law in Michigan said the previous restrictions served as a deterrent to gamblers who would have been more likely to sign up had there been other self-exclusion options besides a lifetime ban. The new application process to get one’s name removed after five years will now give people that option.
Problem Gambling Group Agrees
Leaders from the Michigan Association on Problem Gambling also agreed with the new measure.
“The majority of our board felt the Disassociated Persons List lifetime ban in Michigan may have acted as a deterrent to gamblers who may be more likely to sign up if they have other self-exclusion options such as a two- or five-year ban available,” Michael Burke, president of the Michigan Association on Problem Gambling, said in the news release.
Those who meet the five-year qualification are eligible to apply now to remove themselves from the self-exclusion list by filling out a form on the MGCB website. The MGCB has 30 business days to process the request following receipt of a fully completed form. Applicants will be notified via email or U.S. mail if their request was approved or denied based on qualifications. Further questions about the removal process can be sent to MGCB-DPL@michigan.gov.
The MGCB said it received its first removal application on Oct. 19.
According to the MGCB, as of Oct. 1, the Disassociated Persons List included 4,825 people who voluntarily banned themselves from Detroit casinos since 2001. The state of Michigan does not offer self-exclusion from casinos operated by the 12 federally recognized tribes in Michigan; those are regulated by their own gaming commissions under federal law.
A removal from the list does not automatically grant a person gaming privileges. An individual casino may elect to maintain evicted status after the MGCB removes a person’s name from the list. In these instances, the person must contact the property directly, by mail or telephone, to discuss a possible reinstatement for renewed gaming rights.
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