Members: How do you feel about casinos requiring non-bonus play else they lock you out?


Dormant account
Some casinos have a policy of locking out and closing the accounts of players who:

*Deposit and play only when there is a bonus offered
*and win more then they lose, or, after losing for several sessions, finally make a big win and withdrawal.

They may add insult upon this by labeling the player a "bonus abuser".

Ultimately, what this can mean to a player is that every session may be his/her last and the last session's winnings are in jeopardy.

The casino's position is that they lose money overall to players using bonuses; that a player who only plays during bonus periods is not "a real player"; and they need to protect their business. Some casinos do have this stated in their terms and conditions; some do not.

While I see the business need for this, I also see potential for abuse on the casino side. The problem I see is that many players unaware of this restriction wind up playing only during bonus periods because, heck, that's just smart shopping. Because of the games they choose, their betting style, how long they play etc. they are still what any land casino would consider to be an excellent customer and still provide profit potential to the business.

However, by doing discretionary lockouts and seizing the "last large cashout" a casino could make money out of winners as well as from player losses at the cost of losing the player as a customer.

Because of the intense competition between casinos for customers, I can see an attitude developing of viewing *any* winning customer as a disposable customer, even if that win is atypical for the customer overall.

It is the OPA's position that casinos have the right to control who has access to their services. However, we have also seen players "backed off" who are not cheaters in any sense, but lucky.

How should we as an organization handle this?


I see no problem as long as the winnings are paid out before the account is closed. As much as that sucks, they're just exercising a legitimate right.

Refunding deposits and not paying winnings is NOT acceptable after the fact.

And finally, the label "bonus abuser" is no longer specific - it's generic as hell, just another excuse like claiming bot play.

Any casino who uses this term and cannot back it up without conclusive evidence of real abuse (meaning not meeting the T&C) players should stay away from, even if just this fact alone does not merit being put on a watchlist.


RIP Brian
Surely it's time for the casinos to accept that merely alleging "wrongdoing" on a player's part without producing evidence and then taking his or her winnings is unfair and unacceptable?

I believe the casinos have the right to control admission. It's a risky business out there and casinos clearly have to protect themselves because there are crooked player elements just as there are crooked casinos. But when they do so in such a draconian fashion that doesn't make business sense.

Maybe casinos need to start using the data-mining features of their backend software more frequently and intelligently so that "loyal" players who give them non-bonus action as well as bonus action can be made specific offers which exclude members who are there for the bonus rides only. Added to the loyalty programs many casinos run that could be productive and might even persuade the bonus hunters that a more permanent relationship with safe casinos is to their advantage.

Most of the disputes seem to be on bonus issues leading to these lock-outs and the debate on winnings but I'm with Spear on this - refunding deposits and not paying winnings is NOT acceptable after the fact. Neither is retroactive rule changing.


Dormant account
It's true that a great deal of the trouble could be avoided with more intelligently designed backends to the casinos. But that's not happening at a lot of places, and I want to get an idea of what members think the OPA should do about this.


Dormant account
A casino can set any criterion they want for the player to qualify for promotional offers. We have discussed before that the casinos should just not send offers to the players that they don't what to receive them instead of locking them out. A big problem with these lockouts is they come without warning. A casino offers frequent promos, a player plays within the rules and then bamm, lockout. What the casino should do is send the player a nice letter stating what thier policy is in order to receive promotions. They should also state their policy on their web site. How is a player to know what the casino requires if they don't tell anyone?

A player should never be locked out for just winning.


Dormant account
Should a casino that locks out players for just winning be a member of the OPA?


RIP Brian
The first question one would have to ask in order to be just is can it be proved that they are locking out for that reason and what the history of the particular incident was.

So in my view any attempt at a blanket ban on the practice for OPA casinos would be both impractical and unreasonable.

That does not mean that the OPA should not take on casinos on a case by case basis where members submit complaints that they have been stiffed and the facts support that.


Dormant account
Any casino stupid enough to send promo emails to players who have only played promotions in the past deserves to be taken advantage of. If their too stupid to figure a way to target their good customers then their too stupid to stay in the business.


My take:

First, casinos have the right to choose who gambles at their establishments. If they decide you have won too much (for whatever reason) and ban you that is not a problem.

Second, casinos have NO right to withhold (or delay payment) of winnings that occurred before the lockout. This is completely unethical and should result in immediate sanctions against the casino.


Dormant account
Casinos who lock out players for winning should not be allowed to be members of the OPA. If no rules were broken how can they justify locking them out. If they don't want certain players to play promotions then they should not send them invites.

I can name many OPA approved casinos that practice this kind of injustice and would love to see them booted out. This kind of thing will only stop if people like the OPA take action against it


Dormant account
I disagee with you, ttt!

These casinos should remain OPA members, despite the lockouts, as long as they pay thier customers in full, promptly after thier withdrawal(s). Also, the casino must live up to the terms and conditions of its promotions prior to locking out the player. This has always been Steve's criteria. As long as the customer is paid, then the contract between casino and player has been fulfilled. Then if the casino decides it no longer wants business from this player, it can do what it wants.

Casino Extreme has lived up to this criteria.

VegasCasinoOnline/Twin Aces has not. They decided to lockout all players from Denamrk, and keep thier winnings for SIX months, and then make a decision to pay players on a case by case basis.
In my opinion this is total ridiculousness, and this casino group deserves to get the boot.

I may be wrong about this, but I beleive Vegascasinoonline/Twin Aces are no longer OPA members because of this shady practice.

Way to go Steve!


Dormant account
I agree with you, dave r!

But you are wrong in believing that Casino Extreme has lived up to the criteria.

Casino Extreme locked me out without paying my winnings and OPA has now for over two months tried to settle this matter. The majority of OPA's committee rules in favour of me, but the casino refuses to pay.


Dormant account
Casino Extreme will NOT be put on the not recommended list NOW.

My complaint is for under $100 and Steve says that for such an amount the committe will not put them on the not recommended list.

If OPA get one more unresolved complaint they will remove Casino Extreme from the OPA recommended list.