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Online Gambling Debt
Paid a Collection Agency Re: An Online Gambling Debt?
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Consumer Fraud :: Online Gambling Debt Collection

Were you contacted by a debt collection agency in regard to an online gambling debt?  If so, and then you paid the amount requested, or a part of the amount requested, you may have been a victim of consumer fraud. 

It is our opinion that any sort of debt to an online gambling website is unenforceable as it is not a legal debt.  We believe that these debt collection agencies were well aware of this, but were still willing to work with these online gambling companies because of the profit potential.  The online gambling industry, poker mainly, was estimated to have been generating several billion dollars a year in revenue, so we have no doubt that these gambling companies had a pretty easy time finding debt collection agencies that were willing to skirt the law and use their scare tactics to coerce people into paying an illegal debt.  We are well aware of their games such as saying that you owe money to a financial company, usually a company you’ve never heard of, and not an online gambling company.  And telling persons that the debt would show up on their credit report if they didn’t pay it immediately, which is, of course, false.

Whether you stopped payment on a check, bounced a check, closed your checking account, did a chargeback on your credit card…it doesn’t matter.  Whatever you did to stop the transfer of your money to the online gambling company which led to the debt collection agency contacting you, doesn’t matter. 

The legality of online gambling and online poker was somewhat of a grey area until the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 was passed in late 2006.  The bill specifically made the transfer of money from a financial institution to an online gambling company illegal, and was generally thought to have made online gambling illegal in the United States, which is why PartyPoker and NeTeller, the original PayPal of online gambling, stopped taking US bets and facilitating US transfers of money.  These companies, which at the time were the biggest in the industry, also were public companies listed in the United Kingdom which meant their owners, their shareholders and board members, were public information, which is why they pulled out of the United States.  This led to the emergence of sites like Poker Stars, Full Tilt Poker, BoDog, Ultimate Bet, and Absolute Poker, all private, offshore companies.  These companies began to thrive, yet all the while in violation of US law.  It wasn’t until this year, 2011, that the US Justice Department decided to enforce the UIGEA and seize and shutdown some of these sites.  Just because these sites were operational and taking bets, doesn’t mean they were operating in accordance with US law.  These collection agencies knew this, but couldn’t pass up the opportunity to make a buck. 

If you made a payment to a debt collection agency regarding an online gambling debt, fill out the form below.  Our attorneys are investigating this matter and we want to hear from you.  Please provide us with as much information as possible.  And keep records…such as emails, letters, copies of checks, call logs, etc.  You may be entitled to significant monetary damages in excess of your original loss.

(Please Note: On the form below, "Date of Injury" is the date on which you paid money to the collection agency.  "Location of Injury" is the location where you living at the time of payment.)

Tags: Online Gambling Debt Collection Lawsuit | Illegal Online Gambling Debt Collection Lawsuit

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