UPDATE: New facts have been provided in this dispute which suggest the sportsbook prorated the balance appropriately.
VIPSports.eu (SBR rating D+) has confiscated $1,326 from a winning player. The player created his account January 30th, depositing $1,300 for a $1,000 cash bonus with a 30X rollover requirement. VIP Sports refunded the player's deposit and paid just 25% of his winnings after closing his account for "non-recreational play".
With his balance at $2,300 (deposit + bonus) he began chipping away at the rollover. At the time of creating his account, the player's limits were $75 to $100 on major sports.
VIP Sports limited him from $300 to $100 on baseball props shortly after the 2013 MLB season began, which acknowledges that the player was profiled as a sophisticated bettor. He continued to wager and add to his balance, hitting a 5/1 Kentucky Derby bet which netted $500. His balance as of May 8 was $3,666.
VIP Sports contacted him May 8 indicating that his account would be closed and just 25% of his winnings honored:
VIP Sports to player: "Today we have made the difficult decision to close your account. You play style is as far from recreational as we have experienced. This is not the type of account we cater too. In our terms and conditions we state the VIPSports is a site that caters to recreational players. We would like to pay out your account. We have noticed that you took a $1000 bonus and therefore need to complete 60K in rollover. You have completed little over 25%. Therefore your winnings of after today will be prorated and your deposits refunded. Thank you for you business to date."
He received $1,640 by Skrill the same day. He protested the decision, asking VIP to simply confiscate the unearned portion of his bonus and pay all winnings. VIP refused.
SBR followed up with VIP Sports, but the sportsbook management were unwilling to change their decision. SBR argued that the player's funds were at risk. VIP stood to win his cash. At his lowest, he had $300 in deposited funds available with all of his bonus; the bonus never came in to play given his low limits. VIP chose to accept his action even after profiling him as a sharp player, essentially freerolling him. The player could have lost his initial deposit, but he had no chance to be paid more than 25% of his earned winnings, and no opportunity to redeem the cash bonus.
The industry standard is for a sportsbook to honor all winnings and pay out a prorated portion of bonus winnings. VIP Sports enforced their own rule instead, which give them the right to confiscate earned winnings and all bonus.
VIP Sports rule: "Bonus programs are intended for recreational bettors only. Professional players or players considered to be abusing the bonus system by any means may have bonuses revoked and be subject to further sanctions."
SBR continues to argue on the player's behalf.
SBR reported in November 2011 that VIPSports.eu was targeting players of defunct shop VIP Sports (SBR rating B). The latter was an established sportsbook with a relatively satisfied customer base prior to their August 2011 closure.
VIP Sports is a BTG Global family sportsbook. BTG, which also goes by BTG Gaming, powers slow-pay sportsbook Dimeline Sports (SBR rating D+).
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