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Full Tilt Poker Refunds U.S. Players...Sort of

By Victor Pereira Sunday, May 22, 2011
Victor Pereira
Full Tilt Poker refunds U.S. players...sort of

Full Tilt Poker has, at last, issued an update in regard to its Ticket and Tournament Dollars. A little more than 24 hours ago, the beleaguered website informed its players via email that it had “converted any Tickets or Tournament Dollars in [their] account[s] to cash.”

 

Tournament Tickets were credited to accounts at their real cash value, whereas Tournament Dollars were converted at a rate of $1 for every T$1. Unused Ring Game Tickets (which expired on April 15) were credited at their initial value. Partially used Ring Game Tickets were reimbursed at their current value.

 

Since April 15, when the FBI closed Full Tilt Poker to U.S. players and froze its assets, the site has towed a consistent line on cashouts, claiming that it faced numerous challenges in ensuring the stability of its international business and the timely return of U.S. player funds.

 

Of the latter, Full Tilt Poker said the following: “We are absolutely committed to making sure that U.S. players are refunded as soon as possible. We apologize for the delay and the fact that we underestimated the time it would take to work through these issues.”

 

FTP Pro, Tony G, pled the site’s case on his Twitter account. He asked players to give Full Tilt a two week grace period to sort things out, adding that FTP staff assets were also at risk. He said that these assets may be liquidated, and suggested that players exercise a little understanding for the Full Tilt team.

 

But there are some players that neither the site’s refund nor Tony G’s appeal to clemency has satisfied. Those players perceive Full Tilt’s slow recovery from the “Black Friday” FBI raids as unprofessional at best, underhanded at worst.

 

Said one disgruntled former customer: “PokerStars repaid its debt. Where’s ours?”

 

PokerStars, the most popular site among those previously accepting U.S. players and Full Tilt’s biggest competition in the U.S. market, resolved its payout problems more than a week ago, when it refunded USD$100 million to American players. The payout was part of an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice. PokerStars began the process of negotiating the refund’s terms with federal prosecutors on April 20, just five days after the April 15 indictments.

 

By comparison, Full Tilt Poker’s compensation appears to some to be too little, too late. 

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