Jean Poulin wanted to get thrown out of any Quebec casino he tried to step foot in. Instead it was his lawsuit against one of those casinos that got unceremoniously thrown out, after the judge ruled he had gone out of his way to avoid detection.
Poulin now owes an additional $194 in court costs for his trouble, and no, that figure is not missing any 0’s, and yes, that is likely the lowest court cost amount you will ever hear of again in any court-related news story.
The fun began back in July 2009, when Poulin voluntarily added himself to the Loto-Quebec’s casino exclusion list, a deal he made until July 2014. The self-imposed ban gave casino security the right to remove him from the property on sight.
However Poulin returned to the Montreal casino in question seven times during the summer of 2010, losing $5,680 at the blackjack tables during those ill-fated visits in which he was not removed by security as he had requested. As a result of their failure to remove him from the casino, Poulin had sought to recover his losses from the casino through the courts for negligence.
Judge Alain Breault did not see it that way however. As Poulin had gone out of his way to disguise himself with caps and hoods for the purpose of hiding his identity, the judge ruled that security could not reasonably be expected to remove him, and that “the applicant’s willingness to be excluded from casinos was quite (questionable).”
It didn’t help matters that Poulin’s deal with the casino included a provision that absolved them of any liability should he violate the self-imposed ban. His claim that the provision was null and void because they didn’t hold up their end of the deal didn’t exactly make a whole lot of sense, and really didn’t have a legal leg to stand on, lean on, or anything else a legal leg should be able to do.
Poulin is one of just 4,500 people who have voluntarily signed on to have themselves banned from Quebec casinos, and the judge stated that though the system is not perfect, it has produced significantly positive results.