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Nevada Modernizes Gaming Manufacturer's Statutes

Nevada has one of the oldest and most developed bodies of gaming law and regulation in the world. The Nevada licensing regime reaches not only casinos and those offering gaming to the public but also many gaming device manufacturers. Since “wide-open” gaming was legalized in the 1930s, Nevada’s gaming statutes, regulatory agencies, and regulations have been in a constant state of evolution. 

As mentioned, Nevada regulates manufacturers and distributors of gaming devices used in Nevada gaming establishments. A gaming device is defined as either:

  • A slot machine
  • A program that controls or interprets wins and losses
  • A random number generator used to determine or influence the outcome of a game and wager
  • A system of accounting or management of any game in which the result of the wager is determined electronically
  • An assembly consisting of at least two of the following components: (1) an electronic assembly designed for use in a slot machine; (2) a cabinet with electrical wiring and provisions for a display and coin or ticket in; (3) a mechanical or electric display unit intended for use with gambling; (4) an assembled mechanical or electromechanical unit designed for use in slot machines.

Nevada defines a manufacturer to be anyone that manufactures, produces, designs, controls the design, controls the assembly, or makes modifications to a gaming device, mobile gaming system, cashless wagering system, or interactive gaming system.

The combination of the broad definition of a gaming device with the broad definition of a manufacturer was consistent with vertical manufacturing of slot machines as it existed in Nevada for decades. Traditionally, gaming devices (slot machines) were custom-built devices that were made with customized components. As slot machines and gaming devices became computerized, off-the-shelf technologies, such as CPUs, memory, CRT displays, and LCD displays became more common. With further computerization, operating systems moved from proprietary systems designed for specific device architectures to customized versions of Windows and Linux. Today, slot machines and gaming device architecture is nearly indistinguishable from off-the-shelf computers and computing devices. This has led to increasing use of independent contractors, design companies, and component assemblers by traditional gaming device manufacturers. 

In response to the evolution of the gaming device manufacturing industry, Nevada has periodically adjusted its statutes and regulations to reflect such evolution. This summer a new and significant step was made with the enactment of AB75. Prior to the enactment of AB75, a gaming device manufacturer had to control all aspects of the design, creation, and manufacture of gaming devices for use in Nevada. AB75 allows licensed gaming device manufacturers to increase their use of third-party developers, assemblers, and designers provided that the licensed gaming manufacturer assumes all legal and regulatory responsibility for the gaming device. 

The changes ushered in by AB75 will allow manufacturers and vendors with appropriate agreements to expand existing relationships, form new relationships, and broaden the participation of those involved in programming, designing, creating hardware, and assembling gaming devices for use in Nevada. 

© Copyright 2020 Dickinson Wright PLLCNational Law Review, Volume VII, Number 226


About this Author

Jennifer J. Gaynor, Dickinson Wright, Carson City, Gaming Attorney

Jennifer Gaynor represents clients before the Nevada Legislature in Carson City, Nevada. She also practices before various professional and licensing boards and state and local tax authorities, and represents clients on matters involving First Amendment law, public records and open meeting law, gaming law and regulatory agency actions.

Professional Involvement

  • Nevada State Chair, CARE

  • Board Member, Nevada Preservation Foundation

  • Member,...

Gregory R. Gemignani, Dickinson Wright, Intellectual Property Lawyer

Greg Gemignani's practice focuses primarily on intellectual property law, gaming law, technology law, internet law, online gaming law, and online promotions law. He has represented many clients ranging from the largest casino companies to start-up internet ventures.

Professional Involvement

  • Member, International Masters of Gaming Law

  • Member, International Association of Gaming Advisors

  • Member, Technology Business Alliance of Nevada

  • Member, Clark County Bar Association

  • Member, The Augustus Society 

Kate C. Lowenhar-Fisher, Dickinson Wright, Las Vegas, Gaming Lawyer

Ms. Lowenhar-Fisher is a leading Nevada gaming attorney who counsels many of the world’s premier gaming companies on regulatory issues in connection with mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructuring, reorganizations and financings.  She has extensive experience advising clients on issues related to Internet gaming, social gaming, fantasy sports, liquor licensing, sweepstakes, contests, and promotions. She regularly represents individuals and businesses before regulatory agencies, including the Nevada State Gaming Control Board, the Nevada Gaming Commission, the...

Jeffrey A. Silver, Dickinson Wright, Gaming regulatory Attorney, Nevada
Of Counsel

Mr. Silver's practice focuses on every aspect of gaming, liquor licensing and regulatory law, as well as planning and zoning matters, contractor licensing and transportation law.

Mr. Silver’s representative clients include Gaming Laboratories International, Dubai World, Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, Tuscany Hotel & Casino, Riverside Resort (Laughlin, NV), The Stephen Siegel Group, Grand Sierra Hotel & Casino (Reno, NV), Century Gaming Technologies, Applebee’s Restaurants, Bell Transportation, United Coin, Ryan's Express, and Casino...