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  • Writer's pictureRob M

Casino Self-Exclusion: what is it and how do you do it?

I'm Rob and I'm in recovery for a gambling addiction. One thing that really helped me in my journey to leaving gambling behind was getting myself self-excluded from the casinos and sports books that I was gambling on.

In this article, I want to tell you what a self-exclusion is, how to do it and how it can help you in your personal journey to live a happier and healthier life.

What is A Casino self-exclusion?

A casino self-exclusion is where you voluntarily ban yourself from play at the casino or sports book you're excluding from.

Rather than being asked to leave a casino, a self-exclusion is you asking the casino to ban you from being allowed entry.

Who should self-exclude?

Self-exclusion is a tool that can utilized by someone who is experiencing a problem with their gambling. Examples would include people who are spending too much time or money gambling, or someone like myself who is addicted to gambling and can't stop themselves from placing that next bet.

How do you self-exclude in person?

If you are someone who is going to a brick and mortar casino, the process to self-exclude is pretty straight forward.

You go to the security desk of the casino and ask to be self-excluded and/or "signed out" of the casino.

They may ask you a dozen times if you are sure you want to do it, but in the end, they should provide you with the self-exclusion form that is to be filled out and then you are made to leave the building.

The form would likely look something like this:

Source: Caesars Sports Book

"Addiction begins with the hope that something 'out there' can instantly fill up the emptiness inside." - Jean Kilbourne

How do you self-exclude online?

This gets a little bit less clear.

When it comes to online self-exclusion lists, every website will have a different way of going about it. However, most casinos and sports books have a "contact us" or "responsible gambling" tab that includes steps on how to self-exclude from that particular sports book.

Once you do it, you can no longer gamble with that casino or sports book using your Social Security Number, effectively making it impossible to gamble as yourself on that site.

Also, some states in the United States have statewide exclusion lists that you can join, but others do not. Check out this article that Gamban put together on how to self-exclude in different states in the United States

What happens if you gamble but you are self-excluded?

This one's a kicker.

If you go to the casino while you are on an active self-exclusion list, here are some of the things that may happen:

  • You could be arrested or sued for trespassing

  • If you do win money while there, it will be confiscated from you AND you will be liable to pay income taxes on the winnings

If this sounds terrible, just know that it is... But it's a good thing, because it provides extra incentives to stay true to your word and stay away from the bet (something that a problem gambler would likely struggle to do during the recovery journey).

why self-exclusion can help

Self-exclusion is not a one-step process to quitting gambling and being happy forever.

What it does, is make it more difficult for you to access the temptation of the casino and sports book as someone who is actively trying to stop gambling.

It is one of the four things I've done personally to quit gambling and keep myself clean for almost the last 600 days.

Check out this blog post to see the other steps that I've used to stop gambling.

Let's keep getting better together, one day at a time


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