Frankfurt court upholds another order to refund online casino losses


The Higher Regional Court has upheld a decision in another case against a gambling operator for player losses incurred before online gaming was legalised.

Germany.- Last month in the first decision of its kind, Frankfurt’s Higher Regional Court ordered an unnamed online casino operator to return €12,000 to a player who lost the funds playing on the operator’s offering before Germany legalised online gaming.

The Oberlandesgericht has now followed up with a similar judgement ordering an operator to return €26,000 to another player.

Again, the court’s ruling was to uphold a decision made by a lower-level regional court in Giesson, Hesse. In September, the regional court had found in favour of the player, who had lost the funds playing via a Gibraltar-based German-language online casino between January 2018 and February 2020.

The player’s lawyer István Cocron said: “Since the operator violated the ban on online gambling in accordance with Section 4 (4) of the State Treaty on Gambling, they obtained the stakes without any legal justification. We therefore demanded that our clients must be fully compensated for the loss.

“Many courts have already ruled that online casinos must compensate players for their losses. The decision of the Frankfurt Higher Regional Court shows that the arguments of the providers of online gambling are in vain and that players therefore have a very good chance of recovering the money they thought they had lost.”

The operator may still appeal the decision, but Cocron said he believed any appeal was unlikely to have success.

Legal cases have been brought by several customers in Germany who lost money with gaming operators before the legalisation of online gaming last year. In the previous case brought to the Frankfurt court, German newspaper, Spiegel, had reported that operator in question was part of the UK’s Entain Plc

The operator had attempted to argue that it had functioned legally during a transition period for German gambling during which states were negotiating new gambling legislation.

Last month, a regional court in Köln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, found in favour of a player, ordering an operator to refund €25,375 in losses.

The player had brought the case against an unnamed Gibraltar-based online casino operator whose products he used between October 2017 and April 2020. At that time, online casino gaming was only permitted in the German state of Schleswig-Holstein, but the operator’s games were available in German to all German residents.

In this article:
gaming online gambling