Lake Palace 'do an Omni' - Ecogra says casino is right to do so

Dirk Diggler

Dormant account
Well I can't believe casinos are still trying to do this, but Lake Palace (Microgaming software, part of the Grand Bay/Bella Vegas group) has refused to give me a bonus AFTER I met the wagering requirement to receive it.

They advertised an unlimited 20% bonus that to receive you needed to wager your deposit once on slots, and they would add it the following Monday. So I deposited 6,000 and played this through on slots.

They didn't credit it on Monday, and after over a week of emailing them regularly they finally gave me an answer as to why not citing 'bonus abuse' and saying:

Please refer to point g of the terms and conditions on our website:
LAKE PALACE CASINO reserves the right to change the offer, adjust the bonus terms and conditions, or deny a proportion of the bonus.
I asked for clairification as to how they believed I had abused their promotions to which they replied:

I have been monitoring you account over the past few weeks and confirm
that we have every right not to credit your account with the 20% cash back bonus.

You have a distinct pattern in which you purchase and cashin your tokens. Let me
explain further.

As you are aware, the 20% cash back works on a weekly basis and is based on
all purchases less cashins made during that period ie Sunday to Saturday.
Please look at the file attached. Notice the distinct pattern of purchasing and
cashing in and let me know whether I am incorrect in stating that bonus abuse is
occuring....
to which I replied:

Hi Sally,

Of course bonus abuse is NOT happening. For bonus abuse to be happening I must be not complying with your terms and conditions.

If you claim it is then I can't be complying with them all - if that is the case please explain to me what I aren't complying with?

The bottom line with this is that you advertised a bonus to me which required me to wager first to receive it. I did this and then you refused to give it to me.

Now, you have every right to exclude whoever you wish from any promotion - however you should inform players prior to them taking part that they are excluded. If you advertise an offer as being open to all players and a player meets the terms to get the bonus then they should receive it if you haven't previously informed them they are excluded (which you obviously didn't with myself).
For the record I have never failed to comply with any of their terms and conditions.

After this I thought the best way forward was to complain to Ecogra - after all they are a 'independent' aren't they?

So I explained the situation to them and Tex Rees contacted me with:

I received a copy of your account from the casino and have done a review of your play. There is a definite pattern that emerges when a bonus is in question. Bearing this is mind, it is my opinion that the casino is within its rights not to credit your account with the bonus. Please note that all casinos have a clause in their Terms and Conditions (T&Cs) that informs players of their right to suspend or close any account at their discretion or to deny any player a bonus. eCOGRA do inspect these incidents during the casino review to ensure that there was a valid reason for the action taken.
To which I replied with this:

Tex,

I haver NEVER failed to comply with any of the terms and conditions of the casino.

The casino advertised a bonus to me that required me to do wagering to receive a bonus. I did this and then they refused to give it to me.

Now, they have every right to exclude whoever they wish from any promotion - however they should inform players prior to them taking part that they are excluded. If they advertise an offer as being open to all players and a player meets the terms to get the bonus then they should receive it if they haven't previously informed them they are excluded (which they obviously didn't with myself).
To which Tex replied with:

I am sorry to inform you that I am unable to proceed any further with your query. The casino exercised its right, as set out in their Terms and Conditions to exclude you from a promotion.
 
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Dirk Diggler

Dormant account
The thing what really dissapoints me about the whole situation is Ecogra - they are happy for a casino to use the standard get out clause 'the management reserves the right etc' which is really disgusting TBH and claim that making deposits and cashins in a 'certain pattern' amounts to bonus abuse.

Surely at least they should be aware that for bonus abuse to be happening a player must be breaking the terms and conditions - making deposits and cashins in a certain time/pattern certainly does not equal bonus abuse.
 

bethug

Banned User - Winner of the "<a href="http://www.c
If that all to it, then they wrong. They should have gave you your bonus then told you cant play no more. How i see it if you played slots anyway and made thru alive you should get your bonus

"I am sorry to inform you that I am unable to proceed any further with your query. The casino exercised its right, as set out in their Terms and Conditions to exclude you from a promotion. "

In that case a casino dont have to give you a bonus or change its mind mid stream. Wow Ecogra seems to side with that bull crap term, all bonus lovers are doom. :(
 

spearmaster

RIP Ted
Without being made aware of the "pattern" that has been described, I wouldn't be able to make much comment. But Tex seems to be very thorough in her research from what I've experienced - so something would have had to stick out like a sore thumb for her to reject the complaint.

Can you further clarify this?
 

cipher

Banned member - being a jerk
spearmaster said:
Without being made aware of the "pattern" that has been described, I wouldn't be able to make much comment. But Tex seems to be very thorough in her research from what I've experienced - so something would have had to stick out like a sore thumb for her to reject the complaint.

Can you further clarify this?
I agree Spear. But we really need to know out what this "sore thumb" is. Have a good one.
 

caruso

Banned User - repetitive violations of 1.6 - troll
I won't be rehashing my opinion of Ecogra in the interests of keeping the peace. I'll just say "quelle surprise", LOL.

That is nonsense. If they either 1) emailed you the deal or 2) advertised it to allcomers on the web site WITHOUT any exclusion specifically directed at you, then you are entitled to the bonus. That the casino is entitled to invoke the standard "we reserve the right to screw you" clause is total poppycock. ALL casinos maintain this clause, but only the CROOK casinos INVOKE it in order to deny a player a cashin / bonus or whatever when the player has followed all the rules. You fullfilled your side of the bargain. The casino, after the fact, decides not to fullfill theirs. They are in no position not to pay you. You have done nothing wrong. If they untimately do NOT pay you, then Lake Palace are to the best of my knowledge the first Microgaming group after Golden Palace to fail to come through for the player, and this will be big news.

LOL, I hope Bryan can bypass "Ecogra" on this one.
 

kavaman

Experienced Member
PABnononaccred3
PABnononaccred3
MM
Is there something wrong or am i missing the point?

The casino states:
As you are aware, the 20% cash back works on a weekly basis and is based on all purchases less cashins made during that period ie Sunday to Saturday.

Its not a bonus, its a cashback bonus. So you will get 20% of your net losses back. Did you lose the 6000 or part of it?

-kavaman
 

Dirk Diggler

Dormant account
Spearmaster - I cannot be exact about what they believe it is about my deposits/cashins that exibit 'bonus abuse', but I believe it is simply that I deposit, receive bonus, wager, and then withdraw. The same as what thousands of players do at every casino every day.

Nothing more complicated or sinister - I'm happy to email the excel spreadsheet they sent me to anyone who would like to see it, in fact I'd like to so you can see if you can find anything 'abusive' about it? Just pm me your email address and I'll forward it on.

Kavaman - the bonus is not a traditional cash-back bonus, its TOTAL deposits less TOTAL cashins for the previous weeks play that the bonus is given on i.e if you don't make any cashins you get it on your full deposit.
 

spearmaster

RIP Ted
the bonus is not a traditional cash-back bonus, its TOTAL deposits less TOTAL cashins for the previous weeks play that the bonus is given on i.e if you don't make any cashins you get it on your full deposit.
Ah, I think I got it.

During the week, you make multiple deposits totalling $6000. You wager exactly $6000 on slots, and stop playing.

The problem is, you may have won money - but NOT cashed it out, nor played further - but simply waited 3,4 maybe even 5 days until Monday, hoping that you would get 20% of $6000.

Can you confirm that this is indeed what you have done?
 

Dirk Diggler

Dormant account
That is pretty much correct - I have played there several weeks previously and received the bonus each time with no problem.

Spearmaster said:
The problem is, you may have won money - but NOT cashed it out, nor played further - but simply waited 3,4 maybe even 5 days until Monday, hoping that you would get 20% of $6000
Can I just ask why you think this is a problem? I cannot see why it is at all, the terms are clearly there for all to see and I complied with them.

BTW Once you have received the bonus you then have to wager the bonus 15 times on slots before you can withdraw it. The way the bonus works has not been debated by myself or the casino.
 
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spearmaster

RIP Ted
I'm only anticipating what I think the problem could be.

The alternative scenario would be:

Deposit. Play, win, cashout - wait for cashout, then deposit back in.

What I think they're pointing to is a pattern which clearly (in their mind) takes advantage of the casino. Normally, when people win, they cash out - they don't just leave the money in the account. So, in their minds, if the cashout would have been more than the deposit, they see no reason to pay.
 

Dirk Diggler

Dormant account
Fair enough - I have actually deposited again after being paid every time so equally this could be the problem.

Either way do you think that it is right of the casino to refuse the bonus after I have met the wagering and terms to receive it?
 
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Stanford

Dormant account
spearmaster said:
The problem is, you may have won money - but NOT cashed it out, nor played further - but simply waited 3,4 maybe even 5 days until Monday, hoping that you would get 20% of $6000.

Can you confirm that this is indeed what you have done?
That isn't a problem. That is the promotion. Dirk has gone above the requirement. I have confirmed with Customer Service that the qualifying play does not have to be done on slots. Only the bonus has to be played on slots.

The only requirement is that the player wager his deposits once and not withdraw them as the bonus is calculated as 20% on net deposits to withdrawals.

Stanford.
 

Stanford

Dormant account
My email to Tex Rees

bethug said:
In that case a casino dont have to give you a bonus or change its mind mid stream. Wow Ecogra seems to side with that bull crap term, all bonus lovers are doom. :(
I agree. I have copied you on an email to Tex Rees. Maybe you can let the union take a swipe at talking to Lake Palace and/or Tex Rees. I suspect long-term players have a better sense of evolved protocol than a new moderator.

Here is the email I sent:

Dear Ms. Rees,

I draw your attention to the thread at CasinoMeister. I hope you will offer some clarification by posting there. The thread is titled "Lake Palace 'do an Omni' - Ecogra says casino is right to do so". I am posting this email there as well.

The player claims to have met the conditions of the promotion only to be denied the bonus retroactively based on bonus abuse. The player claims the eCOGRA supports such action.

I would be very disheartened if you have evoked a casino's obscure "bonus abuse" term in a mediation with an online casino. This term (bonus abuse) is ambiguous and should be unenforceable. A long-standing premise of any mediation is that ambiguous terms are construed against the drawer.

Further I call your attention to EGAP 113 that reads in pertinent part:

"The seal holder will ensure that players are not mislead through advertising or promotional activities, and will ensure that the terms and conditions of their promotions are followed."

Additionally your minimum requirements specify (113.R.1):

"Advertising media and content as well as promotional activities shall comply with the letter and spirit of eCOGRA."

To allow this term to be invoked at will is a clear violation of eCOGRA rules. Such ambiguous terms used arbitrarily render all other terms void and advertisement is therefore misleading on its face.

I have passed this on to the new players union who I have suggested should model your commitment to defined standards. It is important that these standards be given meaning by rigorous enforcement.

What has started as a players dispute has now become a test of eGOGRA's legetimacy. If you insist that the term bonus abuse can be subjectively applied you will have failed that test. My hope is that there is some other legitimate reason for denying the player a bonus. The player community will be watching.

CC: Online Players Union
 

dominique

Dormant account
spearmaster said:
What I think they're pointing to is a pattern which clearly (in their mind) takes advantage of the casino. Normally, when people win, they cash out - they don't just leave the money in the account. So, in their minds, if the cashout would have been more than the deposit, they see no reason to pay.
Huh?

I am thoroughly confused.

What's wrong with playing, winning, cashing out and redepositing? I do it all the time!
 

Freudian

Dormant account
Incidents like this is why this industry don't have a future unless there is some real regulation. All casinos have this "get out of jail" clause in their T&C but most have not used it much previously. Now they are starting to use it for the simple reason that they don't want to pay. And if eCogra won't lift a finger, it says a lot about the usefulness of that organization.

This whole "pattern of play" is just an invention of the casinos to get out of paying. If a player through his play does what the T&C of promotion ask of him, the pattern of play is what they should expect. They want him to do more? Add it to the T&C.

Casinos need to start realizing that when they make someone an offer, they have to honor it. If they can't afford it or don't want a particular customer have access to it, then don't offer it to him. It is very simple.

edit: I liked the mail you wrote, Stanford. Hopefully eCogra will see the undeniable logic of your argument.
 
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Clayman

Dormant account
caruso said:
I won't be rehashing my opinion of Ecogra in the interests of keeping the peace. I'll just say "quelle surprise", LOL.
Well I'm sorry to say this is certainly a surprise to me having had a little more faith than you in Ecogra's ability to hold a casino to the published terms & conditions of an offer. But when you're right Caruso you're right.

I don't think I will be able to look upon them in the same way from here forward. Even reversing their decision will not change the permanent damage to their reputation inflicted by Ms. Rees decision to choose to uphold this bullcr*p bonus abuse clause rather than enforcing the truth in advertising clause.

And her intransigence in refusing to even discuss the matter further is not much different than the standard casino clause "No further discussions will be entered into." She should at least explain in detail the reasoning behind her decision and why this clause outweighs other possible interpretations.

Sad day indeed. The sherriff has left Dodge City and it's the Wild Wild West again.

Dirk - how much time elapsed between your filing with Ecogra and you being informed of their decision?
 

jetset

RIP Brian
CAG
spearmaster said:
Ah, I think I got it.

During the week, you make multiple deposits totalling $6000. You wager exactly $6000 on slots, and stop playing.

The problem is, you may have won money - but NOT cashed it out, nor played further - but simply waited 3,4 maybe even 5 days until Monday, hoping that you would get 20% of $6000.

Can you confirm that this is indeed what you have done?
That looks like the situation to me - quite a good ROI all things considered! I cannot believe that casino managements do not study all the consequences of their promo designs which can be taken at a disadvantage, and put in place sensible precautions against those smart enough to exploit their mistakes.

However, I think in the casino's place on what I see here I would have paid Dirk off and written off his successful pattern as hard experience.

QUOTE As you are aware, the 20% cash back works on a weekly basis and is based on all purchases less cashins made during that period ie Sunday to Saturday. Please look at the file attached. Notice the distinct pattern of purchasing and cashing in UNQUOTE probably refers to Dirk's practice of using this promo before...and getting away with it.

However - if a player is given an offer, accepts it and plays to all the T&Cs, he or she should be paid. What the casino does about it's right of admission in regard to that player subsequently is another issue.

And please, let's not use this to take cheap shots at eCOGRA - they've done a lot of fair and sterling work, and none of us are perfect.
 

Freudian

Dormant account
spearmaster said:
Normally, when people win, they cash out - they don't just leave the money in the account. So, in their minds, if the cashout would have been more than the deposit, they see no reason to pay.
That is incorrect. Normally people play, win/lose, wait for a bonus to be credited if a bonus is promised and then cash out. If this customer withdraws before recieving the bonus, it will affect the bonus. So it makes perfect sense to wait until it's actually credited and cleared before withdrawing.

Surely they can't design a promotion like this and expect the players would ruin their chance of getting the bonus by withdrawing at once? If they are not happy with the way this promotion is working they should change the terms.

jetset: No one is denying the hard work and usefulness of Tex Reese in the past. But cases like this one is a litmus test for them. When they make a poor decision it is only fair that we let them know it. If this is indeed the path eCogra chooses to take, I don't see them as having any real use in the future because of the precedent set.
 
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jetset

RIP Brian
CAG
BTW, Stanford I thought your letter to eCOGRA was well worded, too. Let's hope that this matter will be revisited, and soon.
 
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