Thrills Casino - Closed Account , Confiscated Winnings £1,341

RESOLVED
Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on June 22, 2016.

I opened an account with Thrills.com depositing £2,900. Within a few days my balance increased to £4,241 and I requested a withdrawal (having provided copies of my ID). A few days later I tried unsuccessfully to log into my account. I spoke with live chat who said:

"You have permanently self-excluded on our other brand Under and UKGC guidelines, if a customer self excludes on one of our sister sites, then we are bound to withdraw account facilities and void all gameplay after the date they have self excluded, as all our brands come under the same UKGC license … You can have account on each brand, but under UKGC guidelines, if a customer self excludes on one of our sister sites (in your case Superlenny), then we are bound to withdraw account facilities and void all gameplay after the date they have self excluded, as all our brands come under the same UKGC license."

Whilst it is correct that I held an account with Superlenny, which I closed on in July 2014, at no point did I reference a gambling problem or request that I be self-excluded.

The Gambling Commission define self-exclusion as:

“Self-exclusion is when you can ask a gambling company or operator to stop you from gambling with them for an amount of time. It usually lasts for at least six months. It is mainly used by people who think they have a problem with gambling and want help to stop.”

I did not declare a gambling problem, define a period of time that I wish to be excluded by, or request self-exclusion. To the best of my knowledge I did not know that I was self-excluded because I hadn't excluded myself!!!

In April 2016, I opened an account with Kaboo Casino (a sister site operating under the same UKGC license). I successfully deposited and operated the account without hindrance. I made several withdrawals and eventually closed the account on 22/04/16 stating that "I no longer wish to gamble." This does not mean or imply that I have a gambling problem. It is merely a polite way of closing the account. I had closed the account having made a few hundred pounds and had more important things to focus on.

My email does not reference problematic gambling or request self-exclusion. Kaboo did not question the reasons for closing the account further and did not inform me that I had been excluded.

When I opened the account with Thrills.com I didn’t realise that the site is related to Kaboo or Superlenny. Not that this was an issue because I had closed both of these accounts and as far as I understood was not self-excluded because I hadn’t taken the decision to exclude myself! I was able to open the account deposit and gamble without hindrance. It was only after requesting a large 4 figure withdrawal that I was informed that my account was closed and winnings confiscated because I had previously self-excluded from a sister site.

The live chat operator referenced my alleged self-exclusion from Superlenny. I vehemently deny this. Despite the alleged self-exclusion I was able to open and operate an account with Kaboo. If the reason for closing the account at Superlenny was incorrectly interpreted as I have a gambling problem then why was I able to subsequently bet at Kaboo. Why was I also able to open the account at Thrills.com?

If a player has not self-excluded or referenced a gambling problem or addiction then what right do Thrills.com have to confiscate my winnings.

After contacting the live chat support for further details I received an email from James, the Customer Support Supervisor, stating:

Having reviewed your case, I have concluded that we have acted entirely properly in closing your account and voiding all gameplay after the date your account with Kaboo was closed. Your statement in closing your Kaboo account ended with you saying "I no longer wish to gamble". Under UKGC guidelines, we would state this is an indicator of potential gambling problems and as a care of duty, we were entirely correct in self excluding the account and subsequently any other brand account which you opened afterwards.

This differs from what the live chat customer service operative told me. According to him I had self-excluded from Superlenny? James’ email fails to explain why I was able to open an account with Kaboo in the first instance having previously closed my account with Superlenny citing exactly the same reason. I responded to James via email (attached) and called him to discuss. He was unwilling to change his stance and insisted that I complain to the relevant authorities.

I would like to reiterate that at no point have I requested that I be self-excluded from Superlenny, Kaboo or Thrills.com casinos, neither have I reported a gambling problem or addiction. The casino group has not informed me that I have been excluded from betting and has even allowed me to open new accounts without restriction. The casino may have genuinely misinterpreted the email correspondence requesting that my accounts be closed but this is not my fault. Further clarification should have been sought and if appropriate I should have determined whether to be agree a period of self-exclusion and stipulate the period that this should apply. The casino group should have also taken much better preventative measures to stop me from opening accounts if they genuinely believed that I had a gambling problem and had self-excluded from their casinos.

There is a very similar case raised here, which you managed to resolve in the players favour: http:/­/ww­w.a­skg­amb­ler­s.c­om/­cas­ino­-co­mpl­ain­ts/­dec­lin­ed-­wit­hdr­awa­l-a­nd-­clo­sur­e-o­f-a­ccount

Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated. Happy to share copies of emails and chat transcripts if helpful.

Thank you rich

posted on June 23, 2016.

Hi

We had these topic up and running before. I am afraid that if you SE from one of our brands the same policy applies for all our brands. This is in accordonce with the guidelines from UKGC. Unfortunetly we can not "stop" players from opening up an account, but it is all stated in our terms and conditions.

Regards

Bruno

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on June 23, 2016.

Hi Bruno,

Thank you for taking the time to reply. As I explained in my complaint I have NOT self-excluded from Superlenny or Kaboo. I have the emails requesting closure of the accounts to prove this. Self-exclusion would imply that I have taken a conscious decision to exclude myself from gambling for a pre-defined period of time and asked the casino to action this. This did not happen. I only requested the closure of my account.

If I had self-excluded from Superlenny then as you state in accordance with guidelines from UKGC why was I not excluded at Kaboo? I was allowed to make multiple deposits and withdrawals without issue? My account was verified and surely the appropriate checks performed. This only backs up my point that I wasn't self-excluded.

I have adhered to your terms and conditions and would like my winnings to be returned.

Regards,

Rich

posted on June 23, 2016.

Hi
Would you please send me your user name.

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on June 23, 2016.

Hi Bruno, its: thepompeyman

posted on June 24, 2016.

Thanks, I will investigate this from our end and hopefully be able to provide you with an final answer soon.

Regards
Bruno

posted on June 24, 2016.

Hi again,

We been discussing this case and had a look closer to the mail that you sent us a while ago regarding closure on Kaboo. In order to act accordingly and be 100% sure about our current actions we adressed this case to UKGC. I can not promise you when we will receive an answer, but I will get back to you as soon as we know more what their judgement is. Hope that is ok.

Regards

Bruno

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on June 24, 2016.

Hi Bruno,

Thanks for the messages and for re-considering my case. I look forward to the response from the UKGC.

Best wishes

Rich

posted on June 24, 2016.

Thanks Rich for your patience. We obviously want to do the right thing in every aspect.

Regards
Bruno

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on June 27, 2016.

Please keep this case open. Thank you

posted on July 4, 2016.

Askgamblers, the user has been informed to contact http:/­/ww­w.g­amb­lin­gco­mmi­ssi­on.g­ov.uk­/AD­R-B­log­/Ap­pro­ved­/IB­AS.aspx in order to start a investigation on this thread. Meanwhile keep this case open.

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on July 4, 2016.

Hi Bruno. I have already filed a complaint with IBAS. I did this over a week ago.

I had hoped we could resolve this matter without such formality.

The fact that Thrills have contacted the Gambling Commission to clarify that what you have done is correct suggests itself an element of doubt.

As stated before I have at no point self excluded from your casino group.

I call upon you to the right and decent thing; pay my winnings out in full and let's get this case closed.

The adverse publicity is not in Thrills interest and we all have more important things to do with our lives.

Kind regards,

Rich

posted on July 4, 2016.

Hi Rich

I can only relate to your input in this case. The issue here has more to do with the guidelines we have been provided with from their end. It is not intention in any way to make a mess out of this case and delay things, but more, as mentioned, a question of following their recommendations.

Regards

Bruno

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on July 7, 2016.

Please keep this case open I am awaiting a response from the IBAS. Thank you

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on July 12, 2016.

Update to keep this complaint open. The IBAS confirmed on 8 July that they have written to Thrills.com seeking evidence of self-exclusion.

posted on July 20, 2016.

Askgamblers - we are stil in dialogue with IBAS....You can´t close this one until we are finished with a reply from our end.

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on July 23, 2016.

Update to keep this open. The dispute went to the IBAS panel this week. Hopefully the result will be communicated early next week.

Whatever the outcome I will post the result.

Thanks, rich

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on August 6, 2016.

Yesterday I received the following email from Thrills.com entitled "Incorrectly closed due to Self-exclusion"

"We have now gone a round with IBAS/UKGC regarding your case and we have decided that you are correct and we will not close your accounts due to Self-exclusion. This means that your accounts on SuperLenny and Kaboo is now open and you will have to request your Thrills account to be re-opened through the normal channel ([email protected]). You will then have to wait 24 hours after your request in order to get your account open.

We have refunded all your deposits due to the closure of your account, so we will only add the winnings back to your betting account on Thrills. You can dispose of those funds as you wish.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask and we do apologize for any inconvenience caused."

I have requested a full withdrawal and would ask that the case remain open until I receive this please. Thank you for your help AskGamblers.

Bruno I would encourage Thrills.com to learn from this experience. The Casino should not "self-exclude" players without the individuals consent. I have had to spend many hours progressing this complaint and it has caused a significant amount of stress this past 6-8 weeks.

posted on August 8, 2016.

Hi Rich

The reason why we searches for UKGC/IBAS input is that in some cases everything is not clear reagarding self exclusion. Due to that and in order to act accordingly to the guidelines we encouraged you to file an complainment. As things are now this has be done from the players end. I am aware its not optimal and time consuming and I apologize for that. We have learned from this process and will strive to improve our dialogue with you and other players in the future.

Regards

Bruno

Rich Woolsey United Kingdom
posted on August 9, 2016.

AskGamblers I have now received my refund so the case can be closed and marked resolved. Thank you.

I will be closing my account with Thrills.com and would urge future customers to be very careful if they have previously held an account with Superlenny or Kaboo.

Regards

Rich

AskGamblers
posted on August 10, 2016.

Based on submitter's last post AskGamblers Complaints Team is now considering the complaint as successfully resolved and it is being officially closed.

Thank you all for your cooperation.