Whether you’re hitting the slots on your phone or betting real cash on a neon-lit floor, casinos should be entertaining.
But for some people, free gaming apps and gambling facilities can become triggers for unhealthy behavior.
If you’re thinking about voluntarily banning yourself from online or brick-and-mortar casinos in Florida, keep reading.
We provide useful information about self-exclusion, what it means, how it works, and how it can help you regain control.
Self-exclusion can be a powerful tool for players whose daily lives are being negatively affected by problematic behavior related to gaming or gambling.
Although real-money online casinos aren’t yet legal in the Sunshine State, having access to other gaming and betting providers can be challenging for individuals struggling to control their compulsive habits.
If you feel that you need outside help to keep yourself away from online sweepstakes casinos, race tracks, mobile sports betting apps, or tribal casinos, you may be considering self-exclusion.
Let’s take a look at how voluntary self-exclusion works in Florida so you can decide whether it’s the right step for you.
What Is Self-Exclusion At A Casino?
Self-exclusion is a responsible gambling tool that many states, like Florida, offer people who want help keeping themselves away from gaming sites and gambling facilities.
Self-exclusion allows people to:
Voluntarily ban themselves from logging in to their online casino accounts.
Entering brick-and-mortar casinos.
Participating in other gambling activities.
If your gaming or gambling habits are affecting your relationships, your job, or your finances, you might want to reassess your behavior and consider getting help.
Self-exclusion is usually the last resort for people with problematic behavior and you should consider it carefully before taking the step to voluntarily ban yourself from casinos and other betting establishments and websites.
Once your name is on Florida’s self-exclusion list, you will also be banned from:
Receiving gaming credits and check-cashing privileges.
Receiving marketing or promotional material related to gaming and betting.
Receiving gifts or goods from betting providers.
Applying for new casino club memberships.
If you are found gambling at a casino in Florida whilst on the self-exclusion list, you can be removed from the premises and may be arrested and prosecuted for trespassing.
Responsible Gambling Steps To Take Before Self-Exclusion
If you’re having trouble controlling your gaming or gambling impulses but don’t want to add your name to the state’s self-exclusion list, there are a few things you can do first.
Responsible Gaming At Land-Based Casinos
If you play mostly at land-based casinos, you can submit a request to exclude yourself from access to cash.
The Florida Council on Compulsive Gambling (FCCG) has a self-exclusion from access to cash program which allows individuals to restrict how much money they can withdraw from ATMs, creditors, and other financial access services.
You can also block gambling transactions through online payments and apply for a reloadable debit card.
These measures are intended to restrict access to funds and limit gambling-related losses.
Responsible Gaming At Online Casinos And Apps
If you like to play online, most online sweepstakes casinos and betting apps will let you limit or restrict your access by placing voluntary restrictions on your accounts.
Log into the account you want to restrict and find the responsible gaming section in the menu.
You may have to fill out a form or contact the gaming provider directly to enact voluntary restrictions.
Most sweepstakes casinos and sweeps slots apps will allow you to set limits on how much money you spend purchasing coin bundles or placing bets.
Or you can restrict your account access for a predetermined length of time. You can take a break from playing for as little as 24 hours and up to 3 months, though this may vary.
Who Controls The Florida Self-Exclusion Lists
To ban yourself from all land-based pari-mutuel wagering sites, card rooms, and tribal casinos, you will need to put your name on the state’s self-exclusion lists.
The self-exclusion lists in Florida are managed by the FCCG, whose mission is to advocate for responsible gaming and to manage the relevant tools and resources in the state.
The FCCG website is the best place to start as they have a free and confidential helpline that can connect you to an expert who will point you in the right direction towards recovery.
How To Ban Yourself From Gambling In Florida
There are several ways to request self-exclusion from Florida’s gaming and gambling facilities depending on your specific needs.
Online Casinos And Apps
As mentioned above, to restrict or ban yourself from online sweepstakes casinos or sports betting sites, you will need to do it directly through the provider’s website or by contacting their customer service.
Each operator will offer different options, including the length of time you can request a ban or restriction, but self-exclusion usually has a minimum period of 6 months.
Once the self-exclusion ban is in place, you will lose all access to your account and any funds associated with it for the duration of the ban.
Land-Based Gambling Operators
To ban yourself from brick-and-mortar locations such as tribal casinos and other betting gambling facilities, you can submit your request directly at the property.
You can also submit a form at any of the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering, which regulates the pari-mutuel, cardroom, and slot gaming industries in the state.
To put your name on the self-exclusion list you must:
Fill out the self-exclusion form in person at a qualifying location and present a valid photo ID.
Have your photograph and physical description taken.
Turn over any membership cards or other materials used at betting facilities.
Choose the length of the voluntary ban, which can range from 1 year to a lifetime.
Remember that only you can put your name on the self-exclusion list, which is why the Division needs to be able to confirm your identity.
How To Remove Yourself From The Self-Exclusion List In Florida
If, after some time has passed, you feel that you have regained control of your gaming habits and can enjoy casinos and sites responsibly, you can request to have your name removed from the self-exclusion list.
Online Casinos And Apps
If you activated a self-imposed limit or restriction on your online account at a sweepstakes casino or sports betting app, you can request for the ban to be reversed once the specified period has expired.
Each provider will have different rules and requirements to end a self-imposed ban, which is why you must understand their terms and conditions before applying the restrictions.
Land-Based Gambling Operators
If you’ve put your name on the FCCG’s self-exclusion list, you will have to wait for the selected period to end.
Once the period of self-exclusion has expired, your ban will be automatically lifted.
Keep in mind that if you have previously chosen a lifetime ban, it cannot be reversed.
Who To Contact In Florida If You Have A Gambling Problem
If you’re worried that your gambling or gaming habits might be getting out of hand, it’s better to act now rather than wait for the problem to get worse.
If you’re in Florida, you can start by checking the FCCG website, which offers tools and resources to get help from experts who can guide you through your recovery process.
The website also has other materials and information for you to read if you’re not ready to speak to another person, though their helplines and chats are 100% free and confidential.
The National Council on Problem Gambling also offers lots of information and resources no matter where in the country you are.
Gamblers Anonymous is a 12-step program for people who are looking to speak with others going through similar struggles and find support from the community.
Search for meetings in your area for more information and specific schedules and locations.
Gam-Anon is an organization that supports people affected by their loved one’s gambling issues.