France – ANJ warns sports betting operators over refusal of betsBy Phil - 28 October 2021
The National Gaming Authority (ANJ) has warned sports betting operators that following complaints to the gaming mediator as well as to the National Gaming Authority they will need legitimate reasons to the refuse to register bets in whole or in part.
The phenomenon of refusing to register, in whole or in part, the bets of certain players mainly concerns online sports betting odds. The development of this practice, which has led to numerous requests from the Games Mediator, equating to 17 per cent of referrals, has forced the ANJ to rule on its legality to strengthen the protection of the player.
The Authority stated: “Any operator who offers the public an offer of online sports betting at odds cannot refuse or limit the bets of players who accept this offer, unless they have a legitimate reason. This practice is likely to constitute a refusal to provide a service to a consumer, which is prohibited and punishable by a fifth class offense. The refusal to provide a service to a consumer is also an expression of an unfair commercial practice. An operator who offers a bet to the public and who refuses to register a bettor’s stakes for a reason which is not legitimate could also, depending on the circumstances, be charged with the deceptive commercial practice mentioned.
“The operator may, however, refuse or limit a player’s bets for legitimate reasons. Such legitimate reasons may arise from the following cases: prevention of excessive or pathological gambling and gambling by minors; the fight against fraud, money laundering and the financing of terrorism; the financial exposure of the operator, who can refuse to take bets beyond a stake limit he defines, provided that all bettors are treated equally. “
“In any event,” the ANJ added, ”the operator must prove the reality of the legitimate reason for rejecting the player’s bet. The legitimacy of the refusal will be assessed depending on the situation of each player. Operators who persist in such practices of limiting wagering without justifying a legitimate reason for doing so expose themselves to the initiation of proceedings before the Sanctions Commission of the National Gaming Authority.”