Published on: August 29, 2022, 12:28 p.m.
Last updated: August 29, 2022, 12:49 p.m.
Gaming giant Entain is going through a tough time. Following a record fine of 17 million pounds ($21 million) in Britain, he will now have to respond to a lawsuit that could open the door to further legal challenges.
Entain, the parent company of Ladbrokes, PartyPoker and other gaming platforms, is facing allegations that Ladbrokes failed to comply with responsible gambling measures, according to The Times.
The plaintiff, Simon Rose, bet more than €2.1 million (US$2.1 million) between 2015 and 2016, even though he only earned about €42,264 (US$42,264) a year.
This, Rose says in his lawsuit, was Ladbrokes’ fault. The platform didn’t do enough to stop his gambling habit, even though it had the means to do so, he claims.
I should have done more
The lawsuit alleges that Ladbrokes ignored policies related to problem gambling. Rose, at times, could spend as much as €21,135 ($21,135) a day and ultimately lost €271,234 ($271,234) over a seven-month period.
Although he was earning around €3,522 ($3,522) a month, Ladbrokes initially offered him a deposit limit of €23,481 ($23,481). This was the first indication, according to the lawsuit, that the platform had failed to comply with its responsible gambling obligations.
Rose believes Ladbrokes should have done a better job of monitoring his account before he won a huge sum on the bets. If they had, he says, they would have contacted him and taken action sooner, including restricting the account or verifying the source of the funds.
The player admits Ladbrokes contacted him but says it was too late. After racking up €117,406 ($117,406) in losses, Rose received a call from the platform. He found out that he was borrowing money to make bets and that he was spending beyond his means.
According to the suit, Ladbrokes did nothing else. Rose then placed a weekly deposit limit of €1,173 ($1,173) on his account and smoothly increased it to €23,481 ($23,481) just a few months later. Ladbrokes continued to allow Rose to bet until it self-excluded in 2016.
Hold out hope that he can avoid another protracted court battle. It is noted that Rose’s work took place two years before he bought Ladbrokes.
If Rose finds success with his lawsuit, it could lead to further legal challenges. Others who feel they have not been treated fairly by Ladbrokes or other betting platforms can also claim a refund.
Entain has a wealth of legal experience
If he can’t avoid being sued in court, Entain has a lot of experience on his side. A previous case involved the company when it was GVC.
In 2020, GVC had to answer allegations that it violated UK tax laws related to its online gaming operations in Turkey. Around the same time, GVC became Entain.
Despite being awarded GamCare’s Advanced Safer Gambling Standard, Entain, mainly because of Ladbrokes, has faced repeated allegations of infringement. Last year, for example, Ladbrokes faced allegations that it forced a user to spend more than $3 million ($2.07 million) of his company’s funds on gambling. That company later filed for bankruptcy.
A year earlier, New South Wales fined Ladbrokes for offering incentives to users in breach of established law. At the time, the fine of A$207,500 ($143,465) was a record for the Australian state.
Also last year, Entain found itself answering to claims that it allowed an established punter to illegally place about $3.95 million in bets. Scottish bookie Terry Allan allegedly placed the bets from Spain. This would have put them in breach of local laws as Ladbrokes was not licensed in Spain, a requirement in the country.
As a result, Allan demanded a refund of the entire amount together with 8% interest. He claimed Ladbrokes knew where it was and told staff to avoid the subject of the location.