Sedgwick County...working for you

Contact

      Marc Bennett

      Marc Bennett
      District Attorney

      p. 316.660-3600
      toll free. 800.432.6878

      535 N. Main
      Wichita, KS 67203

Lotteries and Casino Nights

The Office of the District Attorney receives frequent inquiries from civic groups, churches and other organizations as to whether they may legally conduct a so-called "Las Vegas" or "Casino Night" activity in order to raise funds. Very often these activities are organized so that persons in attendance are asked to make a contribution to the club or organization sponsoring the event. A packet of play money or chips is issued to the person and these are used throughout the night to play various games of chance. At the end of the evening, prizes may be "purchased" with the play money accumulated, or prizes may be auctioned, and the person most successful at the games of chance will obtain the most valuable prize. It is illegal to require any person to make a donation or contribution in order to gain admittance to "casino night" to play the games.

The conduct of any game of chance in which a prize may be awarded is governed by Kansas law and there are no exceptions - not even for charitable or not-for-profit organizations. Las Vegas or Casino Nights constitute a "lottery" that is specifically prohibited by the state's gambling law. A lottery is defined as ... an enterprise wherein for consideration the participants are given an opportunity to win a prize, the award of which is determined by chance." Kansas Statute Annotated 2012 Supp. 21-6403. The three elements of a lottery are prize, chance and consideration. Consideration is the payment by a person of money or anything of value. Remove any one of those elements and there is no lottery.

In order to give guidance to organization interested in fund raising activities to comply with Kansas law, we offer the following suggestions:

  • All promotional materials, tickets, signs and advertisements should bear a statement that all contributions are strictly voluntary.

  • Amounts of voluntary contribution may be suggested, however, under Kansas law it is illegal to require a person make a specific donation or contribution in order to participate in a Las Vegas or Casino Night.

  • Individuals are under no obligation to make a contribution and may not be barred from participation if they choose not to make any donation.

This policy statement should not be considered an endorsement for any type of stated activity or a recommendation that clubs, organizations or churches raise funds in this manner. This statement is issued by the Office of the District Attorney to assist citizens of Sedgwick County in understanding the laws of this state so that they may comply with those laws.

Raffle Policy Statement

The Office of the District Attorney receives inquiries from civic groups, churches and other organizations as to whether they may legally conduct a raffle in order to raise funds. The conduct of any game of chance in which a prize may be awarded is governed by Kansas law and there are no exceptions - not even for charitable or not-for-profit organizations. A raffle is a "lottery" that is specifically prohibited by the state's gambling laws. A lottery is defined as...."an enterprise wherein for consideration the participants are given an opportunity to win a prize, the award of which is determined by chance." Kansas Statutes Annotated 2011 Supp 21-6403. The three elements of a lottery are prize, chance and consideration. Consideration is the payment by a person of money or anything of value. Remove any one of those elements and there is no lottery.

In order to give guidance to organizations interested in fund raising activities to comply with Kansas law, we offer the following suggestions:

  • All promotional materials, tickets, signs and advertisements should bear a statement that all contributions are strictly voluntary

  • Amounts of voluntary contribution may be suggested, however, under Kansas law it is illegal to require a person to make a specific donation or contribution in order to participate in a raffle.

  • Individuals are under no obligation to make a contribution and may not be barred from participation if they choose not to make any donation.

This policy statement should not be considered an endorsement for any type of stated activity or a recommendation that clubs, organizations or churches raise funds in this manner. This statement is issued by the Office of the District Attorney to assist citizens of Sedgwick County in understanding the laws of this state so that they may comply with those laws.


Sedgwick County...working for you

Mission: To assure quality public services that provide for the present and future well-being of the citizens of Sedgwick County.