And the Briton could only finish seventh in the main event on Sunday, with Mercedes team-mate George Russell securing eighth despite a strong qualifying session.
Lewis Hamilton could only finish seventh at the F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix
Per FIA regulations, champions are only crowned at the Gala which takes place at the end of each season.
The current campaign is poised to end next week, with Abu Dhabi set to bring the curtain down by staging the final race.
It is mandatory for drivers who finish in the top three of the standings to attend the Gala.
Hamilton has already secured third spot regardless of what happens in the Middle East, with Verstappen and Sergio Perez both ahead of him.
He was absent in 2021 at the bash after being beaten to the title by Verstappen in controversial circumstances.
Hamilton didn't need to attend last year, having finished down in sixth.
But with third already wrapped up, FIA regulations mean he's required to make an appearance at this year's celebrations.
Should he choose not to attend, he will be fined - with the Briton previously confirming he was punished for his actions in 2021.
“There will be some sort of fine re: the gala," he said when discussing his absence last year.
"But we’ve worked together to make sure that the money will be put towards youths from underprivileged backgrounds [to help] them get into motorsport engineering.”
Hamilton remains aggrieved with the FIA, believing he was robbed of glory in controversial circumstances two years ago.
However, time is a great healer and it's possible he'll put the controversy of 2021 aside in order to avoid another punishment.
Meanwhile, speaking after the Las Vegas Grand Prix, Hamilton aimed a dig at Verstappen by slamming critics of the event.
His Red Bull rival had previously suggested the event in Vegas was prioritising the show over racing.
But Hamilton came out swinging and said: "[There were] lots of great overtaking opportunities and I think for all those who were so negative about the weekend, saying it was all about show blah blah blah, I think Vegas proved them wrong."
On the race itself, he added: "A really challenging race.
"I started on the hard tyre which was tricky at the beginning.
"I got a big hit from someone behind, I think it was Carlos [Sainz], and tried to not hit the cars that had spun around. I fell back five or six places.
"Then after that just making my way back. I was feeling great, the tyres were feeling good, the pace was strong.
"I went up the inside of Piastri, I don't really know exactly what happened, I obviously got the hit from behind. I think it was a racing incident."