MGCB Demands Faster Payouts From Gambling App Operators

Written By Matthew Lomon on May 1, 2024
Hand holding a stopwatch with the Michigan Gaming Control Board logo on it. The Michigan Gaming Control Board has sent a memo to gambling operators saying customer complaints about slow payouts are on the rise.

The Michigan Gaming Control Board is looking for answers from online operators after receiving an inordinate number of payout-related complaints.

In a recent memorandum, the state’s online gambling authority revealed that withdrawal requests are the board’s most frequently received customer gripe.

A subsequent investigation into the matter found that “several” operators have failed to execute payouts to eligible players in a timely manner. The inquiry also determined that numerous platform providers neglected to provide eligible customers with adequate communications regarding processing delays.

The most curious finding, however, was that said operators did not identify issues with player accounts until after a withdrawal was requested.

As a result, the MGCB is requiring Michigan online casino and sportsbook providers to answer for their actions.

Operators have 10 business days to transfer money following requests for payouts

Typically speaking, online operators must honor a player’s request to withdraw funds from their account within 10 business days. And, other than in rare circumstances — for example, self-exclusion — sites need to give eligible players access to their account’s funds.

The MGCB did note, however, that each site may enforce its own best practices to ensure compliance with legislative requirements.

As such, it encouraged operators to share those practices as well.

iGaming providers must respond to MGCB by May 14

And, the clock is ticking for iGaming providers as the MGCB prepares its next following the initial investigation.

Per the memo, operators have until May 14 to supply the state’s gambling authority with “observations, suggestions, and comments” regarding its findings. Further, they must also offer recommendations that will ensure compliance with operational requirements.

The responses serve a two-fold purpose for the MGCB. On one hand, it will keep operators tied to their word since they are the ones crafting the solutions. On the other, the MGCB will gain better insight into the state-wide scope of the withdrawal request situation.

After reviewing all proposed ideas and feedback, the MGCB will then finalize its memo and issue additional internal control requirements.

Investigation finds operators declined withdrawal requests for unrelated reasons

According to MGCB documents, some platforms flagged player withdrawal requests for reasons that bear no clear connection to the actual withdrawal request. While this doesn’t necessarily mean players didn’t receive a payout, additional reviews slowed the process tremendously.

In many of the reported instances, the MGCB says players were able to create an account, deposit funds, and wager without incident. However, the act of requesting a withdrawal triggered an alert flag on various platforms.

Before addressing the issue internally, the MGCB is once again looking for operator input.

The regulator is hoping to identify potentially risky transactions much earlier. Ideally, it wants operators to flag problems at either the account funding or creation phase.

“The Board is seeking — and expects — the observations, suggestions, and comments of the industry regarding the extent of these problems and the best approaches which will ensure compliance with the rule requirements.”

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Matthew Lomon

Matthew Lomon has been a contributor at Catena Media’s network of regional sites since July 2022. He first broke into covering the legal North American gambling industry with PlayCanada. Since then, Matthew's reporting has extended to PlayMichigan, PlayPennsylvania, and PlayIllinois. Based out of Toronto, Ontario, Matthew is an avid (bordering on fanatic) sports fan.

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