Who will be the Prime Minister after the elections - did STS mislead the players?

Antoni Skoczek|
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STS - i.e. Star-Typ Sport - is the largest bookmaker and at the same time one of several legally operating entities offering the possibility of concluding bookmaker bets in the Republic of Poland. Players using the bookmaker's services have the opportunity to place bets both in a traditional form - at stationary sales points, and via a website or mobile application.

From the beginning of its existence, bookmakers focused mainly on strictly sports competitions. Over time, however, bookmakers also began to include other events, including: events from the world of culture, entertainment and politics.


Before the last parliamentary elections in Poland, which took place on October 15, 2023, STS has prepared an offer for its Players with the possibility of betting on the election results and their subsequent personal consequences - one of such bets was the bet: "The Prime Minister after the elections".

The initial odds indicated that bookmakers predicted a smooth victory for the previously ruling PiS party, followed by the formation of a government by Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. The odds that the current Prime Minister would get this mission again was only PLN 1.25, while the odds for Donald Tusk were around PLN 5.00. This means that for every PLN 100 bet, you could win - before taxes - PLN 125 if Mateusz Morawiecki won and PLN 500 if Donald Tusk won.

The situation changed dramatically after the parliamentary elections, in which PiS won in terms of the number of seats, but it became obvious that the party was unable to build a governing coalition. Then - as the bookmaker itself reported on its website on November 6, 2023 - the odds for the still-incumbent Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki increased dramatically, and for Donald Tusk's victory, STS paid only PLN 107 for each PLN 100 bet - so the odds were only PLN 1.07

When reading this announcement, most people who bet their money on Donald Tusk's victory before the elections - and according to the information provided by STS, there were as many as 82 % betting players - were probably already happy about the victory. How surprised they must have been when, after President Andrzej Duda's decision to appoint Mateusz Morawiecki as Prime Minister, their coupons turned red and were settled as losses?


The procedure for electing the Prime Minister is regulated in the Constitution of the Republic of Poland of 1997, specifically in Art. 154 and art. 155 of the Constitution of the Republic of Poland and, in principle, may consist of a maximum of three steps described below.

Step 1 – In the first step, the President designates the Prime Minister, who must then obtain a vote of confidence within 14 days from the date of his appointment. A vote of confidence is passed by the Sejm by an absolute majority of votes in the presence of at least half of the statutory number of Deputies (Article 154(1) of the Constitution).

This means that if a given person does not receive a vote of confidence, he or she will no longer hold the position of Prime Minister.

Step 2 – In the second step, i.e. if the person designated by the President fails to obtain a vote of confidence, the Sejm, within 14 consecutive days, elects the Prime Minister and the members of the Council of Ministers proposed by him, and the President must appoint the Council of Ministers so selected and take the oath from its members. (Article 154(3) of the Constitution).

Step 3 – In the third step, if the first two fail, the competence to elect the Prime Minister returns to the President, who within 14 days appoints the Prime Minister and, at his request, the remaining members of the Council of Ministers. Then, as was the case in Step 1, the Council of Ministers thus constituted must obtain a vote of confidence from the Sejm (Article 155(1) of the Constitution)

If the vote of confidence is not obtained again, the President shortens the term of office of the Sejm and orders elections.


In the light of the above, the question arises whether STS correctly settled the coupons of players who bet on Donald Tusk - as losers, since we are still at the stage of Step 1 of the election of the Prime Minister described above and with a huge probability Mateusz Morawiecki will not receive a vote of confidence?

We tried to look for the answer to this question in the regulations of the "Prime Minister after the elections", but to our surprise it turned out that such regulations ... do not exist. Therefore, we contacted the STS support department, where we received information that the bet was settled correctly and it was "based on the Constitution, not the regulations."

Therefore, we decided to monitor the messages posted on the STS website both before and after the elections - on October 13, 2023, October 23, 2023 and November 6, 2023, respectively.

These announcements did not indicate in any way the basis on which the bookmaker would make the decision to settle the coupons - in particular, whether who would become the "Prime Minister after the elections" would be determined by the full procedure for electing the Prime Minister, i.e. his designation and granting a vote of confidence, or the bet will also be settled solely on the basis of the President's decision described in Step 1 - i.e. it will not matter whether this person subsequently obtains the support of the Sejm.

What's more, the information published on the bookmaker's official website seems to suggest something completely opposite to the current position presented by STS!

Below is a screenshot from the article "Election 2023: who will form the government? Types, odds” published on the website www.sts.pl on November 6, 2023, which, in our opinion, clearly shows that the bookmaker - until the President entrusted Mateusz Morawiecki with the mission of forming a government - was of the opinion that "Who will become prime minister" will only be decided obtaining a vote of confidence.

Moreover, the bookmaker itself, in its announcements, referred to the person designated by the President in Step 1 as a "candidate to form a government", and also suggested that the name of the new Prime Minister would be known only after the entire procedure of electing the Council of Ministers had been completed:


Taking into account the above, it should be stated that although formally entrusting the mission of constructing a government to a specific person by the President in Step 1, in itself, this person is referred to as the "President of the Council of Ministers" in the provisions of the Constitution, until a vote of confidence is obtained. it is not known whether it will actually perform this function.

Moreover, due to the lack of regulations for the "Prime Minister after the elections" bet and the lack of transparent rules and messages on the bookmaker's website - which could even suggest to players that the bet would be settled based on the final election of the Prime Minister in one of the constitutional steps described above (which was indicated by also change of exchange rate) - in our opinion, STS's actions may be justifiably questioned.

The bookmaker left the door open to the settlement of coupons that turned out to be the most advantageous for him from an economic perspective, and he did it based on criteria that were unclear to the players.

STS also did not specify at any point what the phrase "after the elections" used in the title of the plant meant. Based on the question formulated in this way, most players probably assumed that they were betting their money on the person who will receive a vote of confidence (or be elected by the Sejm) and thus ultimately become the Prime Minister for the next term, and not on the person who will be designated by the President in the first term. constitutional step – incidentally both of these events necessarily occur "after the elections."

Currently, more and more people are coming to the Law Firm who feel aggrieved by the way STS settles their coupons and are looking for legal assistance in contacting the bookmaker. If the problem described in this article also applies to your situation, please contact us.




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