1. #1
    Justin7
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    Player versus Bet-at-home opinion

    The player had an existing account with Bet-at-home. The player opened a second account at Bet-at-home with the intent of collecting an extra bonus. Bet-at-home identified the player as having two accounts after a single bet was placed, but before the event occurred.

    Bet-at-home confiscated the entire player's deposit as "punishment" for trying to collect a second bonus.

    Issue: Can a sportsbook confiscate the deposit of a player that attempts do defraud them via opening multiple accounts?

    With any dispute, our standard is always "How would a U.S. court rule if internet sports gambling were legal in the U.S.?"

    The industry standard for dealing with a fraudulent account is to cancel all wagers and refund the deposit (a book may deduct transaction costs as from the deposit). Any variation from this must be spelled out clearly.

    First, look at Bet-at-home's terms and conditions. There is one that is close to being on point. It reads

    "11. Only one betting account may be opened per customer. Free betting vouchers may be redeemed only once per person, family, household and a generally used computer. If a person opens several betting accounts with a view to redeeming a number of free credit vouchers, bet-at-home reserves the right to freeze all accounts and to withhold any payouts which may be due."

    The term "withhold any payouts" is ambiguous. Are they really saying "we will confiscate any balance including the deposit?" If that is their purpose, they must spell that out clearly. Another reasonable reading of this rule is that they will withhold any payouts - until their fraud investigation is done, when only the deposit will be paid.

    With Bet-at-home's terms and conditions, it is unreasonable to confiscate a deposit. But how would this dispute go if they had a rule that clearly spelled out their intent to seize a deposit if you opened up a second account?

    When a party is defrauded, the law tries to place that party in the position it would be in if the fraud never happened. This is accomplished by canceling all wagers and bonuses, and refunding the deposit (minus any transaction fees). If a rule goes further than this, it falls into the "gotcha" category. If a book had a rule "if your balance shows a net gain of exactly $1000 at the end of a week, we'll confiscate it", it doesn't mean it is reasonable for a book to enforce it. "Fine print" rules (which I define as being on a separate T&C page at a sportsbook) must have some semblance of fairness, and to the extent that they are unfair and unreasonable, they are unenforceable under U.S. law.

    In this case, Bet-At-Home has improperly confiscated a player's deposit. Unless this is immediately addressed, I would support reversing their recent upgrade.

  2. #2
    Frank
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justin7 View Post
    When a party is defrauded, the law tries to place that party in the position it would be in [I]if the fraud never happened



    This is the key part.

    Anything beyond banning him from ever playing there again is unacceptable

  3. #3
    Stumpage
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    It definitely seems harsh, obviously.....Close both accounts and send back his funds, including the fraudulent deposit.

    I have no sympathy for the player at all (took a shot and failed miserably by the sound of it). But to institute some arbitrary "punishment" is wrong, regardless of what their rules seem to suggest.

    Both parties here have f***ed up, in my opinion. Interested to see how it turns out.....

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  4. #4
    LGBoots
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    Return his funds minus an admin fee for dicking them around

    Keeping all of his deposit is theft IMO.

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  5. #5
    JoshW
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    At least they had some rule about not making payouts if multiple account rule was violated. Personally, I think that is enough to keep the funds.

    If their is no punative action when the rules are violated, the person violating the rules has no risk of a downside. He could attempt to do this again, and if he is caught oh well. I don't feel the punishment is aribitary. Keeping funds that were used to try to scam a books seems fair.

    My standard is not the US legal system, but I guess my own sense of justice. Given that they even have a payout withholding clause in their rules, granted in a vauge way, I think withholding funds is acceptable. Just my opinion

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  6. #6
    topgame85
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    These rules are a joke but thats why you read the fine print and not take a shot in the first place! Don't do the crime if you can't pay the fine/do the time

  7. #7
    stevek173
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    Multiple accounts with sites FTL, that simple.
    175 pts

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  8. #8
    Al Masters
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    Just curious, was this like a 200$ deposit or like 5k deposit?

  9. #9
    tomcowley
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    So if the book were smart, it would be able to detect the multiaccount, entice a bigger deposit with some bigger bonus offer, and then jack more than the player intended to deposit in the first place. Sure. That's "justice".

    The player is getting punished by losing part of his deposit to processing fees. It's not a freeroll.

    I would have no problem if the book (after this) told the player *specifically* that if he tries to defraud them again, they're keeping everything, and did it.

  10. #10
    Art Vandeleigh
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    Absolutely no way is Bet at home entitled to the players funds IMO.

    They shouldn't be offering bonuses if it stresses them out so much.

    Maybe this example sort of parallels this problem (just quickly off the top of my head)

    Say some store has an offer, buy 2 get one free, with a provision of one offer per family. The wife goes to the store and gets the 3 items for the price of 2. Next day the husband goes to the store and tries to get away with the same thing. The cashier passes his **** through the machine, and then realizes someone with the same last name took advantage of this offer the day before. An investigation shows that they were related. Is the store entitled to take his money and not give him any products?

  11. #11
    fiveteamer
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    Quote Originally Posted by LGBoots View Post
    Return his funds minus an admin fee for dicking them around

    Keeping all of his deposit is theft IMO.
    Seems fair.

  12. #12
    tomcowley
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    Exactly. I already gave that example too. The book has no right to profit just because a player tried to scam them.

  13. #13
    Wheell
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    When a party is defrauded, the law tries to place that party in the position it would be in if the fraud never happened.

    The law attempts 100% restitution of the defrauded party but that is not the end of it for the defrauding party.

    More specifically attempting fraud can not be made to be a positive EV play. Heads I win, tails we tie is simply unacceptable.

    Now, in this specific case the sportsbook is interpreting the rules on the books in a manner that is inconsistent with an unbiased reading of the rules as well as normally accepted behavior. Oddly their behavior would be considered more acceptable if they had taken a freeroll and only taken action once the player had achieved a gain and then attempted to cash out.

    I'm quite OK with the player suffering for his/her actions but significantly less OK with the sportsbook being both the judge and the beneficiary of the ruling.

  14. #14
    maxpower
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    depends on the deposit money
    bah offers 100% bonus up to 200 €
    if the player deposited 200 and got 200 in bonus money extra in the first account,
    it is fair in my opinion when the bookie keeps the 200 he deposited to 2nd account,
    the player wanted to "steal" from them so he shouldn't be eligible to receive a bonus at all , so it is fair when they take away the bonus from account 1 or (maybe in this case) close account 2 while keeping the deposit

    of course should the deposit to account 2 substantially over the 200 like 5 k then it is not okay and the player should seek legal advise

  15. #15
    JBC77
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    Well, the player did try to steal funds from the book in terms of a bonus. Maybe a serves you right kind of thing.

    Tough call......

  16. #16
    Santo
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    I could agree with reverting any promotional benefit on account 1, then refunding the remainder.

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  17. #17
    Santo
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    BTW, if you want to put the player and book in position before it started, why isn't that before the first account was started, as that's where the fraud begins? If so, you need to take account of all payouts since also?

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  18. #18
    purecarnagge
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    refund his money minus any charges for ** and ban the player. Its that simple. If they want to take action they need to get rid of him. Stealing from him, should result in a downgrade.

    I'm tired of books stealing from players on this multiple account stuff. Its impossible to prove its the same household. How do they know my neighbor in the townhouse isn't bumming my internet for free and placing a bet?

    Now on deposits and bonuses, I just feel nothing gives you the right to steal from a player/book. You get your money back and you go elsewhere, minus a transfer fee.

    But if a book TAKES the bet, you have to PAY the bet.

  19. #19
    Dark Horse
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justin7 View Post
    The player had an existing account with Bet-at-home. The player opened a second account at Bet-at-home with the intent of collecting an extra bonus. Bet-at-home identified the player as having two accounts after a single bet was placed, but before the event occurred.

    Bet-at-home confiscated the entire player's deposit as "punishment" for trying to collect a second bonus.

    Issue: Can a sportsbook confiscate the deposit of a player that attempts do defraud them via opening multiple accounts?

    With any dispute, our standard is always "How would a U.S. court rule if internet sports gambling were legal in the U.S.?"

    The industry standard for dealing with a fraudulent account is to cancel all wagers and refund the deposit (a book may deduct transaction costs as from the deposit). Any variation from this must be spelled out clearly.
    No need to read their fine print. In a case like this it isn't about words and how they might or might not be interpreted. They're thieves. Plain and simple.

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  20. #20
    sofun
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    I think the book should keep his money and banning him forever never come back at more,

    if a guy going to rob a bank, he later was caught by a cop, he claim that he had $50 in his pocket before going to rob, do you think the cop will return $50 back to him and let me go freely.
    so punishing a cheating or scam is something that should do to prevent for the future.

  21. #21
    The HG
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoshW View Post

    If their is no punative action when the rules are violated, the person violating the rules has no risk of a downside. He could attempt to do this again, and if he is caught oh well. I don't feel the punishment is aribitary. Keeping funds that were used to try to scam a books seems fair.

    My standard is not the US legal system, but I guess my own sense of justice. Given that they even have a payout withholding clause in their rules, granted in a vauge way, I think withholding funds is acceptable. Just my opinion
    This is the key right here.

    I am personally always on the side of "industry health", and someone trying to violate rules should have to pay a price if he gets caught. I don't know what that price should be, not saying I agree with the book here, but the idea that the guy shouldn't pay any price for getting busted seems very wrong to me.

  22. #22
    tomcowley
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    The guy's losing part of his deposit. It's not a free shot, no matter how many times people repeat that it is. Numerous stories of people getting deposits and balances confiscated isn't good for industry health, no matter how you slice it, even in situations where you can handwave some crappy justification for it. The effect of all these garbage books stealing money is that legitimate (or, at the least, honest) startups and smaller books are going to find it a lot harder to attract customers, which is hardly good for the industry, unless you're a top 20 book already.
    Last edited by tomcowley; 06-05-08 at 01:35 AM.

  23. #23
    fingas
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    Justin7, can you ask them what they do when a player has 2 accounts with them?

    I had a bet-at-home account for many years.

    Some years ago, a new bookie appeared, is name was starbet.com.
    That bookie was after sold to bet-at-home and after that i received an email informing me that my details were on a new bet-at-home account.

    SO, old users from starbet, can have 2 account like i have.
    Am i a criminal for having that?

    i never asked them to create me a new account, apparently they don't even bother to check that with my starbet details there was already a bet-at-home account user with those same details.

    Would like to hear their version on this one!!!!

  24. #24
    Justin7
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    Quote Originally Posted by fingas View Post
    Justin7, can you ask them what they do when a player has 2 accounts with them?

    I had a bet-at-home account for many years.

    Some years ago, a new bookie appeared, is name was starbet.com.
    That bookie was after sold to bet-at-home and after that i received an email informing me that my details were on a new bet-at-home account.

    SO, old users from starbet, can have 2 account like i have.
    Am i a criminal for having that?

    i never asked them to create me a new account, apparently they don't even bother to check that with my starbet details there was already a bet-at-home account user with those same details.

    Would like to hear their version on this one!!!!
    Your case is very different. You didn't open a second account, rather, they transferred an second independent account to the site. I'm sure if you discuss it with them, you'll be fine.

  25. #25
    Jamie_UK
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    I agree with with holding all funds and deposit, if the books let every Eastern European sign up his hamsters to take them for a bonus, and the book ends up going bust with my money in it, then the gnomes and the beards have basically taken honest players money.

    I'd like to see the spread for how many threads in June are posted like

    "Bad theft booky stoled my monies"

    or

    " ****.com is con book make a theft"

  26. #26
    Pokerdogg
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    Punishment must befit the crime, I hope the days of chopping off one's hand for stealing a loaf of bread is long over.

    I agree that the book, at a minimum must be made whole, which means taking a portion of the deposit to cover any expenses they incurred as a result of opening the account and accepting the deposit. Anything above and beyond, should be spelled out either in their terms and conditions, or follow common industry practice (sort of like common law). If the common practice is to return the deposit and ban the player, then so be it. Keeping the entire deposit, in my opinion, constitute cruel and unusual punishment, unless the total deposit was small (say $100 or less).

    In their T&C, they said they may withhold payouts that is due. I interpret it to mean any wager winnings. I think that is fair, a book shouldn't have to pay any wager wins, if the account was fradulent.

    One more thing, if they had stated in their T&C that they would confiscate the entire balance of the account(s), I would argue that the condition is unreasonable and should not be allowed.

  27. #27
    sofun
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    come on guys, I hate any fu***king books out there that are not paying to players and scam the players, giving players hard time when they win. that's totally BS, but in this case, if the players are trying to cheat or fradulent, that actions is not tolerant and their money should be lost,

  28. #28
    louisvillekid
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    "11. Only one betting account may be opened per customer. Free betting vouchers may be redeemed only once per person, family, household and a generally used computer. If a person opens several betting accounts with a view to redeeming a number of free credit vouchers, bet-at-home reserves the right to freeze all accounts and to withhold any payouts which may be due."
    i translate the "withhold any payouts which may be due", as winning bets, not his/her deposit.

    the player did take a shot and got caught, but to take their original deposit is theft IMO.

  29. #29
    Dark Horse
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    Quote Originally Posted by sofun View Post
    come on guys, I hate any fu***king books out there that are not paying to players and scam the players, giving players hard time when they win. that's totally BS, but in this case, if the players are trying to cheat or fradulent, that actions is not tolerant and their money should be lost,
    Funds deposited should never be considered in the book's account, but always belongs to the player, until he wagers it. Any money not wagered, at any time, should be out of the book's reach. With good books that money should be as safe as in a bank.

    The act of offering a bonus is always going to attract a small percentage of scammers. If books don't want to put in the necessary security to prevent that, they shouldn't be offering bonuses. Books without proper security should not be allowed to use that as excuse to steal money from players.

    The bonus itself is not part of the player's funds.
    Last edited by Dark Horse; 06-05-08 at 05:11 PM.

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