The fallout from the latest actions by the U.S. Department of Justice continue to rumble throughout the online gambling world. The latest victim is one of the more respected places online - VIP Sports. A note published on their network of websites last week announced that the company is closing and will shut down as of August 1. Websites affected include VIP.com, nine.com, betgameday.com, englishharbour.com, VIPSlots.com, caribbeangold.com, silverdollar.com, millionairecasino.com, slotsgalore.com and superslots.com.
Although these sites are closing, they are 'doing the right thing' and have given players plenty of time to request their funds - this is in no way a situation where players will get stiffed. All players of any of the aforementioned websites are able to request a payout via check before August 1. The only method that is available is a check payout, as we were told â€œother methods are even more expensive for the company and player.â€ In addition, we have found that there is also a minimum requirement to get a payout. Players must have at least $145 in their account. According to our source at VIP, that restriction is being placed on them by the check writing company that is processing all of the final payouts. The minimum check is $100 and there is a $45 processing fee, thus the $145 figure.
Players with low balances are upset and the ire on our phone lines and chat caused us to use our influence and contacts in the industry to and find a solution for the 'small guy'.
Players with $145 or less in their accounts can get 100% or more of that amount at Elite-rated JustBet. Any player who has $145 or less in their VIP (or affiliated) account needs to get a screen shot of their account showing their balance. Then players should contact JustBet at 800-379-9638 and mention OSGA or promo code WG1564. Players existing balances will be used as a 100% real cash bonus. There is a minimum deposit of $50 to receive this offer and a six time rollover before withdrawal. Any player who can't send the entire existing balance at one time still has a chance to participate in this offer. Players can use the number above and speak directly with Scott Carter at extension 339. JustBet caters to smaller bettors and Scott promised us that no one will be left out in cold. This offer also applies to casino players.
Players can also play thier balances for the next few days looking to get over the minimum withdrawal-by-check figure.
VIP was one of the first and most respected outfits to operate on the island of Curacao opening back in 1999. It's founder, Alistair Assheton created a trade group on the island to help keep rouge outfit form the jurisdiction while ensuring player safety. VIP expanded in the mid-2000s, absorbing several smaller books on the island like Gameday, Five Card Charlie and Bet19. They further expanded by purchasing Nine in 2005. The entire VIP group was regarded as solid over the years and had an outstanding track record. However, after the UIGEA in 2006, they decided to stop taking new players from the United States and Canada.
Now they will not take any new customers and are shutting their doors. The main culprit it the same reason that they changed their focus in 2007, the UIGEA. This law has made it increasingly difficult for online gambling houses to send money to U.S. players and the recent DOJ sting operation sealed the deal for VIP. A source at the sportsbook told us that the continuing fight to find and keep good processing was the "main factor that they are closing".
Though we see this as the end of an era with VIP and their associated companies, it unfortunately, is just another sign of the times.