I was recently in the car with my husband, listening to the radio, and a commercial came on. Now, that's a pretty normal happening. Radio is free, so they pay the bills by playing commercials, no biggie there.

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The weird part came when I was listening to the end of a commercial that had to do with gambling on your phone.

I'm not someone who places bets on things. I don't find anything wrong with it, it's just not something I go out of my way to do. And online gambling and placing bets through apps recently became legal in Michigan, so we've all heard a lot of these commercials recently. But when I was listening to the "legal" bit at the end of an app gambling commercial, I was pretty confused. It used the phrase, "Michigan disassociated persons". And I had no idea what it meant.

Michigan Disassociated Persons

Just listening to the context clues of the commercial, I figured disassociated person might mean someone who has a felony on their record, or perhaps a person who wasn't capable of making decisions on their own at all times, like someone with dementia.

But what I learned was something completely different. And if you've ever wondered was a "Michigan disassociated person" was, let me tell you.

According to the Michigan government and the Michigan Gaming Control Board, a Michigan Disassociated Person(s) is someone that has a gambling problem and has "voluntarily declared that they will no longer visit Detroit gambling casinos."

Michigan Casinos and Disassociated Persons

Essentially, it's a list used as a tool to help those who have a problem with gambling. Those individuals voluntarily place themselves on this list, and that list is then disseminated to Michigan casinos so that those persons can be removed from the casino if they ever return.

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It used to be that this list was permanent. Once you put yourself on the list, there was no way to come off of it. However, a new Michigan law enacted in October of 2020 allows "a person to request removal of his or her name from the list of Disassociated Persons". That person would need to have been on the list for at least five years to be able to request to be removed from the list.

So there you have it. Something that you've probably heard time and time again, but may not have known the meaning of.

Michigan Lawyers, 1855-1940S