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Can betting companies refuse to pay out?

In the gambling word, there’s a reasonably hot topic that gets revisited quite regularly, and probably more regularly with the increase in popularity of online gambling in recent years, not to mention the ever-growing social media interactions involving gambling. That topic is the notion of betting companies refusing to pay out. Can they do this? Is it legal? And why do betting companies do this?

Can betting companies refuse to pay out?

Can bookmakers keep your money? The short answer hear is yes. Currently, betting operators can withhold winnings from a customer, and although this may seem unfair, unethical, and even illegal, it is in fact, somehow, within the law. At present, there is no legislation preventing betting operators from refusing to pay out.

We know that they can, but the next question here is do betting companies ever refuse to pay their customers? By in large, the majority punters receive their winnings in reasonably timely fashion providing they’ve already gone through the verification processes that are now common practice in the online betting world.

However, there are still plenty of cases where bettors are met with refusal. A quick look in gambling forums or on twitter will show that getting your winnings isn’t always as easy as it should be. And the real rub is that those punters who don’t get their money are often never given proper reasoning.

Why do betting companies refuse to pay out?

As touched on above, there’s sometimes a lack of substantial reasoning provided by the bookmaker, and even if reasoning is provided, it’s usually something vague, but the bottom line is this: in the modern betting world, bookmakers don’t like to lose. Gone are the days where bookmakers backed their own opinions and fearlessly took on the public.

Nowadays betting operators simply don’t want to go up against an informed punter, and they’ll do everything they can to avoid that scenario. Accounts are monitored and if anybody is showing profit over time or is betting in a way that suggests they may turn out to be profitable, bookmakers tend to impose limits, restrictions, account closures, and on occasion, they’ll even refuse to pay out.

Now, there is one instance where betting companies in the UK do have perhaps have a more legitimate reason to withdraw winnings. As they do in many industries, palpable errors exist in the bookmaking world. For example, if a certain selection is priced at 5/1 by mistake when every other bookmaker has the same selection at 1/5, and a punter jumps on at this seemingly ridiculous inflated price, the bookmaker will likely refuse to pay out at the quoted 5/1, and they’ll cite a palpable error as the reason.

Other reasons as to why a bookmaker may not pay out tend to be breaches of terms and conditions. Each betting site has T&C’s and punters should read them carefully before betting as not to be found in breach of them.


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