DoubleDown Interactive (DDI) and International Game Technology (IGT) have reached a settlement worth $415 million in a class action lawsuit. This agreement, approved by a federal district court in Washington, signifies the resolution of a contentious legal dispute centered around DoubleDown Casino, a social gaming app and website.
The Issue at Hand
The lawsuit claimed that DoubleDown Casino violated Washington’s state gambling laws by enticing players into buying and losing online gaming chips. Although the platform doesn’t offer real-money gambling, it allows players to purchase interactive gaming chips and tokens. According to the plaintiffs’ legal team, this financial transaction contravened Washington’s ban on commercial casinos.
Ownership and Legalities
IGT, a UK-based manufacturer of casino slot machines and interactive games, acquired DoubleDown Interactive in 2012 and sold it in 2017. The lawsuit, filed in June 2018, argued that DoubleDown Casino and its past and current owners should bear financial responsibility for operating unlawful games of chance in Washington state.
Despite agreeing to the settlement, neither DDI nor IGT have admitted guilt or wrongdoing. All settlement class members who didn’t correctly seek exclusion from the settlement also agreed not to file or participate in any lawsuit or other action related to the settlement.
Breakdown of the Settlement
As part of the settlement, IGT will contribute $269.75 million and DDI will cover the remaining $145.25 million. Due to the “risky, novel, and hard-fought” nature of the litigation, the plaintiffs’ attorneys will receive nearly $121.5 million from the settlement fund. The balance will be distributed among the class action members.
This settlement serves as a reminder to gaming companies to ensure their operations abide by all relevant laws, given the potential legal risks associated with online gaming platforms.