Plaintiff-appellant GNOC, Corp. t/a Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino ("Golden Nugget"), incorporated and principally doing business in New Jersey, appeals from two judgments entered in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (Brieant, Chief Judge) denying enforcement of a gambling debt incurred by Leon Endico, Sr. at the Golden Nugget casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Initially, the district court granted defendant's motion for summary judgment and dismissed the complaint, 692 F.Supp. 1515 (S.D.N.Y.1988), holding that a New York court would apply New Jersey law and that the New Jersey statute and regulations governing casino gambling would render Endico's debt unenforceable because the casino had not properly endorsed checks signed and presented to it by Endico to obtain money for gambling. Thereafter, Golden Nugget moved to alter or amend the judgment based on evidence it submitted that New Jersey would consider the debt enforceable because the casino's endorsement comported with the New Jersey requirements. The court denied the motion, reiterating its earlier opinion and adding that New Jersey public policy also mandated denying enforcement of the debt. The court again entered summary judgment dismissing the complaint.
We agree that New York courts would apply New Jersey law. We hold, however, that because Golden Nugget's endorsement of Endico's checks complied with pertinent New Jersey law and regulations, Endico's debt to Golden Nugget is enforceable in New Jersey, and hence, in New York. Moreover, we hold that enforcement is not contrary to New Jersey's public policy. Accordingly, we reverse.
Miner '56, Roger J., "GNOC, CORP. v. Endico, 876 F. 2d 1076 - Court of Appeals, 2nd Circuit 1989" (1989). Circuit Court Opinions. 275.