Lawyers, Answer Questions  & Get Points Log In
California Gaming Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Gaming and Entertainment / Sports for California on
Q: I want to know if I can sue a mobile game app.

I believe the game uses deceptive practices to confuse and trick players into purchasing things that seem like a good buy but in reality it almost always a terrible buy. They usually show a box containing like 10 items and they tell you that you have a random chamce at one of the items. But... Read more »

Jason Brooks
Jason Brooks answered on Apr 3, 2018

The beauty (and more often, the detriment) of our American legal system is that anyone can sue somebody for anything -- the more pertinent question to ask here is: Do I have a *legitimate* lawsuit against this mobile developer for their allegedly unfair/deceptive business practices? To that, the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports and Gaming for California on
Q: I own a gaming website that blogs and reviews to promote gaming companies.

My question would be am I allowed to take my own in-game screenshots and use these images on my websites to avoid copyright infringements or violations? I have scoured the internet to find a reasonable and safe way to use images from big game titles. If this is not allowed are there any way... Read more »

Carrie A. Ward
Carrie A. Ward answered on Mar 27, 2018

You will need permission from the gaming companies to use images of their game that you are using in a promotional context. Taking screenshots from your own game and then using them for commercial purposes is not advisable.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Business Law and Gaming for California on
Q: Question about "Customer Appreciation Giveaways"

I am a small business owner and sell a product for $150 which my customers are very happy to get. If I wanted to (without any additional purchase required) do a Customer Appreciation Giveaway to 3 out of every 200 customers of mine, would I be breaking any laws? As far as I can tell since I would... Read more »

Julie King
Julie King answered on Dec 22, 2017

Just avoiding the use of the words “raffle” and “sweepstakes” doesn’t help your situation one way or the other. The law would look at the way the contest operates. If people have to buy something in order to get a chance to win, it’s generally considered a lottery, which only the state... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Products Liability, Civil Litigation, Gaming and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Can I use Albert Einstein's name and picture in a math game I'm making?
Robert Philip Cogan
Robert Philip Cogan answered on Nov 27, 2017

Albert Einstein's image has been established as a protectable property. It is likely that a license would be required. The cost may fit within your margins and may make the game more desirable. One prudent course is to engage an attorney to contact the rights proprietor.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts, Gaming and Internet Law for California on
Q: A contest ran with a deadline offering a cash prize, received many entries, & never picked/paid a winner. Is this legal?

This was a wealthy Youtuber who offered $10,000 USD as a prize to the best video made to fit a hashtag. He gained millions of subs and earned millions of dollars in AdSense revenue from the contest but kept the money. When another creator called him out, he made a poor excuse for deciding not to... Read more »

William John Light
William John Light answered on Oct 11, 2017

No, it's not legal and it violates YouTube's own rules.

https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/1620498?hl=en

You can file a complaint with the California Attorney General. https://oag.ca.gov/contact/consumer-complaint-against-business-or-company

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Gaming and Employment Law for California on
Q: Can my former employer force me to remove images of a video game I've worked on from my online portfolio?

I am a graphic designer in video games.

My former employer is asking me to remove images of a game I have worked on from my online portfolio. These images are taken from the published game (no confidential material).

Can I safely decline to edit my portfolio?

Robert Philip Cogan
Robert Philip Cogan answered on Sep 12, 2017

To the extent that the question lays out facts, it appears that you created the images as part of your employment. There is a good chance that the employer owns the copyright in the images. You may wish to ask the employer if you can use the images along with an acknowledgement of the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Gaming, Intellectual Property and Trademark for California on
Q: I wanna write a book/make a game about a non-english song. Do I need to get copyright permissions or can I just credit?

Basically, I used the song for inspiration for characters, setting, and plot. The reasons, some events, names, and everything else will be from my imagination. And some characters will say some lines from the song word for word in conversation (not song). I will not have the actual song sung... Read more »

Robert Philip Cogan
Robert Philip Cogan answered on Jul 17, 2017

A true answer would require review of the original material and a more precise description of exactly what you are doing. You would have to consult an attorney.

Here are a couple of observations. Crediting the original creators means that you are not a plagiarist. However, the credit could...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports, Gaming, Intellectual Property and Internet Law for California on
Q: Can I include images of video games in my monetized blog?

I am planning on creating and eventually monetizing a video game blog. I would like to include images of the video games I write about, however I'm not sure if that would be copyright infringement. I would appreciate is someone could tell me if this is allowed. Thank you.

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Mar 30, 2017

This may qualify as an exception if you're writing comments and critiques about the games, and if you're providing attribution to the copyright holder. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury and Gaming for California on
Q: I was injured at an Indian Casino in Northern CA. It was a slip and fall having head injury-concussion. Advise.

Can I file a claim on my own or should I get attorney. I've had headaches and dizziness. I was transported to hospital and have done follow up with doctor.

I fell and hit my head bad on wet walkway outside of casino. No signs posted. Very slippery walkway and it was wet.... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Mar 29, 2017

Contact a member of the CAOC in the County where it happened. They give free consultations and can best address the peculiarities of the situation.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Gaming and Internet Law for California on
Q: If accepted Terms of Service say that the user's digital content might be revoked and the money withheld, is it illegal?

If an online company that sells bundles of digital keys for games would say, that they can revoke the digital keys at any time if they find out that the customer (buyer) has been selling the products further or if they just suspect him doing so, could they revoke the keys without refunding the... Read more »

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Mar 22, 2017

It depends on the agreement in the Terms of Service re: this particular issue. If reselling is a violation of the TOS and the remedy is agreed as you note, then there may not be a problem, but it seems some evidence of the violation is required here. More details are necessary to provide a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gaming for California on
Q: Is it possible for someone to sue me if I use their code in a game but the game is not actually theres?

The game is Minecraft and I'm using someones code for a minecraft server that brings in alot of revenue and now the owner of that code who is threading to sue me. To sum things up the code was developed for minecraft servers performance but he doesn't have any affilation with microsoft or... Read more »

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Mar 18, 2017

See my answer to your identical question. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards, honors, testimonials, and media appearances/ publications on my... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Internet Law and Gaming for California on
Q: Is it illegal to sell a data cd that has the web links to websites that offer free downloads of game roms and emulators

I know that roms are a illegal downloads and Emulators are part of the free trade act and are fine to download or share as long as you dont profit from it. They would be buying the disk off me for correct setup files, easy install and download sites that are safe and not damaging to your pc... Read more »

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Mar 12, 2017

If all you're offering is a set of website links, I see no problem here; but you may want to use a release and waiver to try to avoid liability for any damages or legal violations. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gaming for California on
Q: I won a jackpot at a casino playing poker, i was not 21 at the time can i claim it once i turn 21, or can i claim it no

casinos playing age is 21 but ive played here before and never been asked for id, ive cashed out chips many times before but since this was a jackpot i had to hand them my id, i said i forgot it and have a voucher to go receive it at any given time. I want to know if i can claim my money or not,... Read more »

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Feb 5, 2017

If you were playing illegally at the casino because you were underage, I see no basis to claim the winnings. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can read more about me, my credentials,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gaming for California on
Q: Can I sue a online gaming company for about 1250 ive spent in a decade and a half on it, lost it b/c i get perma ban'd.

Can I sue a online gaming company for about $1250 (low ball estimate) I've spent in a decade and a half playing it? Today I was Permanently Banned for a first time offense of offensive language. The company headquarters is located in California.

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Jan 2, 2017

For an attorney to answer this question, he/she should start with reading the company's Terms of Use that you accepted when playing on their site, along with a review of all the facts and communications in your situation. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gaming and Personal Injury for California on
Q: I have epilepsy and after a seizure was beaten by casino security and local police.

I had my third seizure this year at a local Indian casino. The first two times they called EMTs. This time after finding me laying face down on a dance floor they arrested me instead and called local deputies and both parties physically hurt me. What can I do now ?

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing answered on Jul 18, 2016

Contact a member of www.caoc.com in that area--they give free consultations.

1 Answer | Asked in Gaming for California on
Q: Are gambling debts legally enforceable?
Charles Snyderman
Charles Snyderman answered on May 3, 2014

California court decisions have held and continue to hold that the California judicial system is not available to resolve gambling debts. However, you will have to consult with an attorney because the question you ask may not be as simple as that. Was the debt incurred on-line? At an Indian casino?

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.