Positional Statement on Consumer Law and Gambling

The Horseracing Bettors Forum notes the findings in the recent Kinloch vs Coral Bookmakers case in the Scottish Court regarding a bet placed on football.

While not wishing to comment on the outcome of the dispute itself, HBF is placing on record its concern about some of the remarks made in the course of the case about the degree of consumer protection – namely none – due to an individual which a Court chooses to identify as a “professional gambler”.

At point 150 in the Court’s findings this is portrayed as being synonymous with an individual “gambling with a view to profit”.

HBF maintains that nearly all gamblers act with a view to securing a profit, even though most of them fail in that regard.

Indeed, it is a crucial aspect of betting on horseracing and other sports that a punter is engaged in a game of skill, as opposed to pure chance, and that it remains an aspirational pursuit for the majority.

HBF expects that the consumer rights of the betting public at large are not waived on such a flimsy pretext. It will seek confirmation from the Gambling Commission as to what that body’s view is on this matter.

The full Court judgement can be read at:

https://www.scotcourts.gov.uk/search-judgments/judgment?id=c72b2da7-8980-69d2-b500-ff0000d74aa7

April 2017