Winning at an online casino is a very exciting experience. You watch the numbers roll over on your screen and think of all the things you can buy with your newfound cash – a fancy meal, a holiday, a new pair of shoes…
However, winning at an online casino doesn't necessarily always mean getting your hands on money, as the money will still be locked in your casino account and you'll need to withdraw it first.
Unfortunately, at many smaller and less reputable casinos, withdrawing your winnings can often be a complicated, drawn-out and, ultimately, fruitless process.
Whilst some casinos routinely refuse to pay out altogether, others impose convoluted terms and conditions in the hopes that you'll give up trying to get your winnings. In this post, you can learn exactly what to do in these circumstances and how to ensure it doesn't happen to you again.
Why Would A Casino Refuse to Payout?
As the online casino world grows in size, players need to be more cautious than ever before. This is because there are a lot of untrustworthy sites around, many of which will refuse to pay out if you win a large amount.
The reason behind this is simple: casinos don't want to lose money. Instead, they'd rather delay withdrawals, in the hopes that you will wager your winnings again and either lose them or at least keep the money cycling through their site.
Whilst this is shady behaviour, it isn't entirely illegal if you have agreed to various terms and conditions. This means there's a whole list of reasons why a casino may refuse to pay out.
The Main Reasons Why a Withdrawal May be Refused
You've Requested to Withdraw Too Little/Too Much
Almost every online casino will impose withdrawal limits of some kind and so, if your withdrawal is rejected, you should first make sure you've requested an amount between the limits. You can find out withdrawal limits by checking the casino's terms and conditions and remember, these may vary depending on your banking method.
- You Haven't Cleared Wagering Requirements
If you are trying to withdraw money which was won whilst using a casino bonus, then you need to make sure you've cleared your wagering requirements first. Wagering requirements refer to the number of times you need to wager your winning before you can withdraw. At a decent casino, these should be no higher than around 30x.
- You Need to Verify Your Identity
One of the main reasons a withdrawal may be refused is because you haven't supplied the casino with proof of your identity. In order to adhere to ‘Know Your Customer' (KYC) rules, online casinos need to ensure you are who you say you are before they pay out. This helps to stop money laundering and other illegal activities.
Before you request a withdrawal at an online casino you may, therefore, need to send various documents to the casino. These may include a valid form of ID (driving licence, passport), a utility bill (as proof of address), and a photo of the card you used to deposit with originally (or a screenshot from an e-wallet account).
How to Get Your Winnings
If you are certain your withdrawal isn't being blocked for any of the reasons listed above, then you'll need to take further action against the casino.
To start with, you should take screenshots of your casino activity. These should show the balance of your casino account, your transaction history and your winnings history. You should also save proof of any contact you have with the casino (chat history, emails). All of these things are important to have, in case things get more serious and legal action is required.
Your next port of call is to contact the casino's customer service department and ask them to explain why the withdrawal is being blocked. It may be that you've violated a rule somewhere, however, you should always check the reason against the casino's terms and conditions. If the casino start to make excuses or refuse to explain the situation properly, you'll need to move on to lodging a complaint.
Casino Forum Complaints
Almost all businesses hate to be called out in public. It damages their reputation and may put off other customers. This is exactly the same with online casinos and so, if your casino is refusing to pay out, you need to start speaking about it openly and loudly.
You can do so by sharing your story on the casino's social media channels (commenting on their Facebook page and tweeting at them), and by sharing your story on dedicated casino forums.
There are two well-respected gambling forums which both have hundreds of readers. Moreover, these sites work directly with casino representatives:
On both of these sites, you can register formal complaints. If you have accused the casino of doing something unlawful or off-key, chances are they will pay out promptly, as they know that an unsolved complaint looks very bad.
Use a Complaint Tool
You can also use a complaint tool, such as Resolver (for UK players), to help you make a formal complaint. These tools are useful as they will know exactly what documents you need to provide as proof of your issue and how to get the matter solved as fast as possible.
Resolver is a free-to-use, independent service. Whilst it doesn't serve as an intermediary between you and the casino, it can help you to craft complaint emails, make a complaint in a structured way, and make informed choices about what actions to take.
Contact the Gambling Commission
The last and final step you can take is to contact the Gambling Commission. For UK players, this means contacting the UKGC.
Whilst it may be the case that the UKGC advises that you make a complaint through one of the channels listed above, being able to prove to the casino that your making a complaint to the UKGC is a valuable step. Hopefully, this will simply scare the casino into paying out, as they don't want to have their licensed question or worse, revoked.