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Thomas Swartz
Thomas Swartz, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 3174
Experience:  Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
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I own a business, electronic dart boards, (S corporation) in

Customer Question

I own a business, electronic dart boards, (S corporation) in Florida and we are looking at expanding into other states. The dart boards in the other states are owned by individuals in each state we are expanding to. We will provide online dart leagues and tournaments which will be done on the dart boards in the other states with each other. Players pay money to play in these and at the end of the season prize money is given out. What would be my liability in this since my company will hold the the money and then pay it out at the end. We will not be keeping any money, it will be paid back to the players.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Thomas Swartz replied 1 year ago.
Hello Rob,If I understand your question, you will essentially be running a set of skills contests in a variety of states??If this is the case, you should be aware that each state will likely have its own laws in place regulating such contest. Most states make a distinction between games of chance such as sweepstakes contests and skills contests. As mentioned, it sounds like you will be running a skills contest where the outcome is not determined by chance, but by some skill. It is going to take some time and effort to research the laws in each of the individual states you want to operate in. But I will give you some resources below.But in general what is most important is that you provide to all contestants the official rules of the contest, including the eligibility of contestants, a full description of the prizes, how the prizes will be paid, when the prizes will be paid, who will be the judges of the contests, when the contest will start and end etc. Basically, you have to be very clear and provide full disclosure to all contestants about everything about the contest. Your liability will essentially be that if your company violates any of the conditions of the contest, a contestant could sue you for essentially a breach of contract.In some states, it may be necessary to register and possible bond your contest with a state agency or official. Some states have "gaming commissions" which regulate such contests.It is difficult to go into detail about everything involved here. So, let me give you some resources so you can research the matter further:Is Your Contest LegalAn Introduction to Sweepstakes and Contest LawsFederal and State Sweepstakes and Contest Laws This last link (a Word Document) points you to specific state laws that you need to look at.I hope this at least begins to answer your question.Thomas