The Montreal Casino and the government-run corporation that owns it will have to pay out $102,500 in compensation for overcharging on alcohol drinks, following a class action lawsuit.
According to Le Journal de Québec, criminal lawyer Mustapha Mahmoud put forward the suit in 2016. Mahmoud visited one of the casino’s bars which offered a $5.75 drink special from Sunday to Thursday, with prices rising to $7.25 on Friday and Saturday. However, the lawyer was at the bar early on a Sunday morning and was charged the Friday-Saturday price.
Officially, it is Loto-Québec (rather than the Casino specifically) that will have to pay the settlement. It won’t take the form of a cash payout — rather, the Casino will offer a 30 percent discount on all food purchases at its Le Montréal restaurant until March 27 (or until $102,500 of discounts have been issued, whichever comes first), although the discount only applied on Sundays through Wednesdays.
While the case itself is relatively straightforward, it’s not really clear who wins in the court of public perception here: The plaintiff is fundamentally correct, but given the rather large effort put in over a $1.50 charge error, the lawsuit comes across as rather frivolous. (Of course, the real situation was that this $1.50 was overcharged many times, to many different people.)
Then on the flip side, the Casino seems to have achieved a result that requires it to not really have to pay people back. They raked in extra money on overpriced drinks, and the penalty is that the people who overpaid can then return to the casino and spend even more money, getting a cheaper meal but still paying full price for alcohol. On top of that, you’d have to eat at a restaurant with menu items like “Cowboy Rib Steak”, and the deal is only valid in the depths of winter, when there’s no tourists around, and most Montrealers would rather eat at home instead of taking a cab to a gaudy gambling hall on the middle of an icy river.
- Loto-Québec devra verser 102 500 $ pour avoir vendu de l’alcool trop cher [Journal de Québec]