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Gambling Bonus Terms Are Unfair, Claims the CMA

- November 22, 2017 By Oliver Young -

The CMA wants to impose stricter rules on bonus terms and conditions.

The UKGC feels that operators have to demonstrate a greater degree of responsibility.

The UK Gambling Commission has been pretty active in the past year and its representatives expressed the aim of being even more active in the upcoming period. The UKGC released numerous public statements over the course of the last several months, and its representatives have spoken to members of the press on more than few occasions, and all that clearly implies that the Commission will be regulating operators and the market as a whole even more fiercely and with a greater degree of dedication.

Last month, the UKGC concluded that operators must not release ads that appeal to children, as there have been worries that certain games and the relevant ads and promotional materials are specifically designed to attract children. Earlier this month, the Commission released its 3-year plan where the focus is set on 5 particular points, including increasing safety and security.

UKGC Warned Gambling Operators

The Commission, i.e. its CEO and Chairman participated in an annual conference this week and they pretty much reaffirmed the known positions. Bill Moyes, the Chairman of the Commission was pretty forward when he addressed the online operators telling them that the public no longer supports gambling as much as it used to. Moyes stated that his words can be treated as a call to action, adding that the industry will have to choose whether it wishes to be held as a group of responsible organisations, or a problematic element which has to be stopped with restrictive regulations.

The Chairman went on to say that the Commission has fined some of the biggest operators with an amount that exceeds £10 million only in the last few months and that the UKGC would like to see a more cooperative approach from the gambling operators.

The CEO of the Commission, Ms Harrison was pretty straightforward too. She said that operators haven’t done what it takes to convince the Commission and the public that they are doing everything to protect their customers. The Commission, she insisted will keep on intervening wherever it seems fit and necessary, especially if it feels that the operators are not meeting the legal requirements. She concluded by saying that the operators should take her words as words of warning.

CMA Wants Clearer Bonus Terms

The operators have another regulatory body on their backs, namely the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), through its Project Director also warned them that heavier penalties might be in order, especially for casinos and bookmakers that keep offering misleading bonuses and promotions.

George Lusty of the CMA said that there are many causes for concern, adding that his organisation carefully studied numerous bonus terms and conditions, concluding that the actual bonus prizes often differ from what is described in the terms and conditions. Lusty also stated that since the CMA wasn’t able to fully comprehend what a particular bonus offer is consisted of, then the customers also won’t be able to do so.

Minimum withdrawal limits and other terms that make it difficult for customers to withdraw their winnings were mentioned as some of the more problematic elements. Furthermore, CMA also feels that wagering requirements are a problematic concept as they don’t allow customers to withdraw money which is legally theirs.

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