Honestly, there’s not much you can do but sit and sulk when a UKGC casino you were playing at happens to go bust. Neither the Gambling Commission nor the UK Government is obliged to safeguard your deposited or staked funds the same way a bank does.
The options for recourse are limited, leaving little room for action beyond a sense of frustration. But, to save yourself from panic and uncertainty you can do your homework before you put any money into the casino. It includes knowing your rights as a player and the level of protection a casino offers in case of insolvency.
In this regard, the Gambling Commission may seem like it’s shirking responsibility. However, it mandates every gambling business licensed in the country to let its players know how their money is treated and whether it is protected during bankruptcy.
Businesses must state the level of protection offered. It can be any of these three levels: Not Protected, Medium, and High. Additionally, they must maintain separate accounts for player funds and business funds.
Keep in mind that none of these rules guarantee you will get your money back if a gambling business goes bust. When you gamble online, you will still proceed at your own risk.
Nevertheless, knowledge is power. Knowing what to expect should help you make informed and better decisions, especially when choosing such casinos. You can find the best and fastest-paying UKGC online casinos here.
Understand the 3 Levels of Protection
- No Protected (previously Basic): Your funds are not protected. In the event of insolvency, you lose it all, including the money you staked with a scope of recovery next to zero.
- Medium: Your funds are protected usually via insurance or Quistclose trusts. Reimbursement is not guaranteed, although hopes for arrangements are given for the same.
- High: Your funds are put in a formal trust account legally separated from the that of casino. The money is controlled by an independent trustee and audited by an external auditor. Reimbursement is still not guaranteed, but the chances of recovery are high.
What’s Covered And What’s Not
By player funds to be protected against insolvency, the UKGC means the following:
- Casino deposits
- Winnings received or owed
- Bonus received or owed
The rules don’t cover funds staked within an open bet because the event for the bet is yet to occur and the gambling business has not calculated the winnings or losses.
Where to Find This Information
As per the UKGC, all licensed casinos must transparently state the level of player fund protection in their terms and conditions, providing an accessible link. It is the responsibility of the casino to make sure every depositing player understands the protection level before adding funds to their account.
Any change to this protection level should be communicated to depositing players before their next deposit, providing them with the choice to agree or choose not to participate.
As a player,
While all this might seem convenient and beneficial for the player, in reality, such information is usually buried deep within a lengthy list of terms and conditions. This prompts most players to simply click the ‘agree’ button without fully understanding what they are agreeing to.
Know Your Player Rights
The UKGC also requires all licensed gambling businesses in the country to have a proper complaints procedure in place. The terms and conditions of this procedure should be clear and its details should be made available to all players.
Moreover, the casino’s terms and conditions containing the level of protection should be fair and presented in simple, easy-to-understand language.
If you believe a casino treated you unfairly or if their terms and conditions lack clarity or there’s no mention of the fund protection level, you can follow the complaints procedure and directly voice your concerns to the casino.
You can also use Resolver, the UKGC-recommended free online tool to help you with the complaint submission. If you are still dissatisfied with the way your complaint was handled, you can escalate it to any Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) provider.