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A bad beat jackpot is a much friendlier version of its sister, the bad beat. It is a prize paid out to a player that has a strong hand in a card game such as poker but loses to an even stronger hand.
The presence of a bad beat jackpot could be considered insurance for players but not all poker games offer a bad beat jackpot. There are often stipulations as to how strong a hand must be in order to qualify for a bad beat jackpot.
Bad beat jackpots are often progressive, which means a small amount of the pot is taken from each game – an extra rake in addition to the regular rake – and added to the bad beat jackpot in order to fund it.
A bad beat jackpot is predominantly associated with poker and may often feature in a number of casinos.
An example of a player receiving to bad beat jackpot would be for a showdown in Texas Hold ‘Em, where one player boasts four of a kind of threes and their opponent also has four of a kind featuring sevens.
As seven is a higher number than three, the second player would receive the pot as the winner of the hand but due to the strength of the losing player’s hand, they would receive the bad beat jackpot as a cash pay-out.
In January 2018, players playing in a poker tournament at Motor City Casino in Detroit, six players won a share of just over $1m in the biggest ever bad beat jackpot recorded.