Can Online gaming be disputed?

Live forum:


01-08-2007 02:43:11

I have a friend who lost a lot in online gaming and he was asking me if it could be disputed.

So can his losses be disputed through his credit card company? Don't know what I should tell him.


01-08-2007 02:59:43

Do you mean online gambling? If can't dispute if you lost, online gambling isn't even legal in the states I think?


01-08-2007 04:03:26

lol. dispute a loss in gambling.


01-08-2007 06:30:44

Yes, a dispute can be filed for any credit card/debit card charge. The problem is that they will investigate any dispute. So if he really did lose this money through gambling then he runs the risk of the gambling company and maybe even the credit card could file some sort of recovery. I would seriously advise against disputing the charges. He could end up at the least having his dispute overturned and it's possible that he could get into trouble filing a false dispute. (It also could draw attention to the fact that he's gambling online and he could end up getting into some sort of trouble with that.)


01-08-2007 07:02:39

Don't gamble if you can't afford to loose. Plain and simple.



01-08-2007 07:25:11

Online gambling isn't even legal in the US, so how was he able to do it? I really would like to know for personal reference...


01-08-2007 07:31:06

Dispute their gambling losses? Geez, how unethical and low-life can some people be?! I think that takes the prize for the lamest question I've seen in a long time. Tell him to man-up and accept his responsibilities, and don't freakin' gamble of he can't afford it.

Not only is it considered illegal in the US, VISA and MasterCard have both declared it against their terms and don't allow it. So not only should he expect NO help from them, I wouldn't be surprised if they took some civil action themselves, at least terminating the accounts of the gambler and also the broker that processed the payment (since you can't charge gambling losses directly to a card any more). Hell, they might even report to the authorities, who knows.

I can't believe somebody even considered this... roll


01-08-2007 08:24:57

online gambling is not illegal for a U.S. citizen, the only illegal part of it is for the company that supports the gambling to accept payment for people who reside in the U.S.

that is as much as I am going to go into this topic... tell him to take up that 2nd job...


01-08-2007 09:21:25

Full tilt is legal and i deposit with my Visa all the time


01-08-2007 10:12:15

im in the same boat as turbohim



01-08-2007 10:21:49

Hrmmm he hasn't come back ...maybe it is online gaming? If thats the case then yeah you can.


01-08-2007 10:35:27

We're getting off topic since this thread was asking about welshing on legitimate gambling debts by disputing their charges, but since it's going in this direction, let's seek clarification.

The legal aspect of online gambling is still a "gray area." Certainly states have the power to legalize and regulate gambling within their state, as some have done. OTOT, other states have forbidden it. The Federal statutes used to to argue against online gambling involve the transfer of gambling money (wins and losses) across state lines. So if the online casino is not located within your state, and protected by state law, then you run afoul of federal law. Numerous recent cases have gone severely against the online gambling business, including the arrest and charges against the CEO's of even overseas gambling companies such as BetOnSports (whose CEO was arrested on layover in US airports while travelling lithroughli the US). So to flatly state that online gambling (for real money, I'm not talking about virtual/play gambling) is not illegal in the US is a bit inaccurate, or at the least disingenuous. If it were so cut & dry legal, there wouldn't be the level of enforcement and controversy over it lately.

Quoting from Wikipedia (emphasis mine)


United States

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled[2] in November 2002 that the Federal Wire Act prohibits electronic transmission of information for sports betting across state lines but affirmed a lower court ruling[3] that the Wire Act "'in plain language' does not prohibit Internet gambling on a game of chance."

[b7ebf723e2a]Some states have specific laws against online gambling of any kind. Also, owning an online gaming operation without proper licensing would be illegal, and no states are currently granting online gaming licenses.[/b7ebf723e2a]


In August 2004, Casino City, an online portal for internet gambling sites, sued the US Department of Justice. The complaint alleged, inter alia, that the website's businessópromoting internet gamblingówas legal, and requested a declaration from the court that its business was protected by the First Amendment. The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana dismissed the case in February of 2005.

In its opinion, the District Court wrote,

[i7ebf723e2a]It is well-established that the First Amendment does not protect the right to advertise illegal activity... [b7ebf723e2a]The government's interest is specifically directed towards the advertising of illegal activity, namely Internet gambling[/b7ebf723e2a]... Furthermore, the speech in which the plaintiff wishes to engage is misleading [b7ebf723e2a]because it falsely portrays the image that Internet gambling is legal[/b7ebf723e2a]... Because plaintiff's speech concerns misleading information and illegal activities, it does not fall within the speech that is protected by the First Amendment.[5][/i7ebf723e2a]

The US Court of Appeals, 5th Circuit, dismissed Casino City's appeal in January, 2006.[6]


In July 2006, David Carruthers, the CEO of BetonSports, a company publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange was detained in Texas while changing planes on his way from London to Costa Rica.[7] He and ten other individuals had been previously charged in a sealed indictment with violations of US Federal laws relating to illegal gambling. While as noted above, a United States Appeals court has stated that the Wire Act does not apply to non-sports betting, the Supreme Court of the United States previously refused to hear an appeal of the conviction of Jay Cohen, where lower courts held that the Wire Act does make it illegal to own a sports betting operation that offers such betting to United States citizens.[8]

The BetOnSports indictment[9] alleged violations of at least 9 different Federal statutes, including 18 USC Sec. 1953 (Operation of an Illegal Gambling Business). Carruthers is currently under house arrest on a one million dollar bail bond[10].


[b7ebf723e2a]Also in September 2006, just before adjourning for the midterm elections, both the House of Representatives and Senate passed legislation (as an amendment to the unrelated Safe Port Act) that would make transactions from banks or similar institutions to online gambling sites illegal.[/b7ebf723e2a] This differs from a previous bill passed only by the House that expanded the scope of the Wire Act. The passed bill only addresses banking issues.[13] [b7ebf723e2a]The act was signed into law on October 13, 2006 by President George W. Bush, and there is a provision for a 270-day period to develop enforcement measures.[/b7ebf723e2a] At the bill-signing ceremony, Bush never mentioned the Internet gambling measure, which was supported by the National Football League and opposed by banking groups.[14]


So while there is still much legal wrangling over the nuances of internet casino style gambling, government and law enforcement has been moving forward on the notion that it is illegal. VISA and MasterCard have prohibited use of their payment networks for online gambling, so I'm not sure how your VISA's are being used to pay Full Tilt directly -- I would imagine there is a shell company or middle-man payment broker involved to obfuscate the transaction, even if you aren't aware of it. If you're using gift cards or prepaids that may be different, as they are processed differently than credit/debit cards.

From Duke University's Law School on the subject

[quote7ebf723e2a]II. Self-Regulation in the Credit Card Industry

∂8 [b7ebf723e2a]Many of the financial institutions targeted in the Internet Gambling Enforcement Act have taken independent steps to prohibit transactions between gamblers and Internet gambling businesses. American Express, Discover, Citibank, MasterCard, and Visa prohibit Internet gambling transactions[/b7ebf723e2a] due to the uncertain legal climate of the industry.27 In addition to the liability problems, credit transaction companies claim that risks of fraud and bad debt are higher for internet gambling compared with other transactions.28 In Citibank's case, the New York Attorney General, Eliot Spitzer, heavily influenced its decision. Spitzer accused the credit card company of knowingly profiting from an illegal activity. This allegation, if prosecuted, could have resulted in criminal liability under New York law. Citibank denied any wrongdoing, but agreed to contribute $400,000 to compulsive gambler counseling services.29

∂9 Gamblers adapted quickly by learning to make payments through digital money services such as PayPal, a service that facilitates online money transfers by disbursing payments between members via email. However, Spitzer also pursued PayPal after the success of its confrontation with Citibank. PayPal declared that it had already agreed to prohibit gambling transactions due to its acquisition by eBay. Still, PayPal settled with the State of New York for $200,000 in disgorged profits.30 [b7ebf723e2a]Other online money services similar to PayPal have stepped in to fill in the void, but each prohibition adds to the frustration of online gambling and creates barriers that may prove to be too high to attract new customers. In light of this trend toward prohibition of credit card and digital money transactions, only the most die-hard gamblers will resort to the use of unregulated foreign online banks and non-Internet based forms of money transfer.[/b7ebf723e2a][/quote7ebf723e2a]


Personally I think you've got to be pretty hung up on gambling to trust your money to all these shady and unregulated ventures, most of which are overseas and beyond reach of any attempt to reclaim damages due to fraud, identity theft, etc.

I don't personally have anything against gambling, or online gambling. I've gambled in my life, and I think it can be quite fun and exciting. But I'm also acutely aware of, and sensitive to, all the potential legal and financial pitfalls that surround the issue. And that's not even touching on the social, moral, and psychological implications resulting from addiction.


01-08-2007 16:14:17

i agree with what you said dmorris, but where i was going is that the law passed is not prohibiting U.S. Citizens from playing, but rather from the online gaming companies from accepting payments. That is why there was the big deal with Neteller top dogs getting arrested when they entered the U.S. It is illegal for any of the online companies (the site you are playing on) to allow U.S. players to deposit real money. Most of them shut down when the bill was first past, and others decided that the U.S. was enough of their member base to just stay out of the U.S.

As for trusting these "shady" ventures. I have never felt worried about my money involved in I don't play other places but i fell that they are making enough money legally that they have no need to try to scam people and risk losing traffic.


02-08-2007 12:40:11

So pokerstars and full tilt still "work" then?


02-08-2007 14:04:04


But in other news, i just lost on $450 on one hand on full tilt - I had Full House, 9's Queens.. other dude had House Queens 9's. Argh.


02-08-2007 14:31:55

[quoteb4d89439fd="manOFice"]Don't gamble if you can't afford to loose. Plain and simple.


So true. Simple as that.

PS Ouch, Such a bad beat ^ =[