Betway (SBR rating D-) is using a "gotcha rule" to confiscate winnings from players. A seventh Betway player filed a complaint with SBR this morning. Betway is enforcing a bizarre rule that allows for confiscation of all player winnings if a player bets in excess of 30% of their starting bonus. Betway is unwilling to cooperate with SBR. SBR urges players to avoid the scam sportsbook.
A Betway player tells SBR that he registered with Betway on May 4th, 2012. He deposited $40 via credit card to open his account. In return, Betway credited the player a $30 bonus. The player accepted the bonus and began wagering, making ten bets from May 5th to May 10th. After fulfilling the bonus requirements, the player asked for a payout of $285 on May 13th, 2012.
Betway cancels all bets, cites gotcha rule
Betway cancelled all of the player's wagers one day after the player requested payment. Betway stated that the player's bet size exceeded 30% of the bonus amount; thus, all winnings were nullified. The player provided SBR with screenshots of each of his wagers, as well as his transaction history which showed proof of deposit.
SBR is following up on this latest Betway.com complaint, but does not expect the sportsbook to reverse its decision. SBR is suggesting players attempt to file a dispute with the Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LGA) of Malta. While the LGA has come under fire for being too lax with their operators, if facing enough pressure the LGA has ruled in favour of players, as it did when revoking Stryyke's license in 2010. The LGA's support may amount to a token gesture however, as Stryyke and other flat-lined sportsbooks such as BetOnBet (SBR rating F) and BetAfterBet (SBR rating F) did not pay players.
The Betway house rule reads as follows: "Before any withdrawals are processed, your play will be reviewed for any
irregular playing patterns. In the interests of fair gaming, equal,
zero or low margin bets or hedge betting, shall all be considered
irregular gaming for bonus play-through requirement purposes. Other
examples of irregular game play include but are not limited to, placing
single bets equal to or in excess of 30% or more of the value of the
bonus credited to their account until such time as the wagering
requirements for that bonus have been met. Should the Casino deem that
irregular game play has occurred, the Casino reserves the right to
withhold any withdrawals and/or confiscate all winnings."
Betway has confiscated £6,050 in player winnings citing the above rule. Betway is indexed on the SBR sportsbook blacklist with their rating of D-. If the sportsbook was not refunding deposits, or confiscated winnings that did not involve a bonus, SBR would adjust their rating to F.
Betway players are advised to file disputes with the LGA of Malta. Players may also submit their complaints to SBR by filing a sportsbook complaint form.