Beware: Pokerstars bonus problem

    • Cagey75
      Cagey75
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.07.2008 Posts: 96
      I got the $50 no deposit bonus fof Stars here over a year ago, I never cleared the bonus and didn't play on Stars afterward until recently. I made numerous small deposits since but only this week decided to withdraw some money, I had $49 in the account and tried to withdraw $30 - No go.

      After e-mailing their CS they looked into the problem, it seems that if you do not clear the $50 bonus from PStrategy you owe Stars $50 ... wtf?

      So, this 'freebie' if uncleared, puts you $50 in debt to Pokerstars!? Basically, I can only ever withdraw from there amounts over $50, because that bonus expired!?

      I've never heard such nonsense, I thought that the 'free' $50 start up you got was yours to try build on, if you lost it, you lost it - but you could then deposit your own money on top. Because it was over 90 days later when I started to deposit I apparently owe Stars that $50. So much for a freebie!

      Just beware if you have this bonus or are going for it. If you leave it dorment for 90 days for some reason, you lose it - fair enough. but if you lose the $50 and don't clear the points you will owe stars $50 - since they have no way to take it directly your account will remain -$50 in debt to them, you can still play the money you have below this but can only withdraw whatever you earn above it.

      Part of their reply -

      "You did not reach the 500FPP's in 90 days and so the money is no longer
      yours to transfer or cash out.

      As we do not have the functionality to physically remove the money from your
      account it will remain in the unclear to cash out section until such time
      that we can remove it."
  • 16 replies
    • SoyCD
      SoyCD
      Bronze
      Joined: 20.02.2008 Posts: 6,356
      Hello Cagey75,

      The free starting capital does not put you in debt at any platform. If you lose it you don't have to pay it back, and your own money will never be retracted in replacement of it.

      What you are describing here is something different, namely PokerStar's cashout policy.

      To start off a bit of extra information: In general every platform that deals with free $50 has a cash-out clause which stops you from being able to withdraw the starting capital before having reached a certain level of points. This is to stop people from just getting free $50 and cashing out right away.

      In the past this clause (due to the technical aspects behind it) has caused problems at some sites when people lost their starting capital and then proceeded deposit own money which they then tried to cash out shortly after. Since they still hadn't cleared the starting capital the technical system would prohibit a cashout. Since this doesn't make sense (them not being able to withdraw own money) and our starting capital IS free - and does not put you 'in-debt' we systematically made platforms aware of this so that they could fix it. Most of them have.

      Just recently there was a similar case with PokerStars and I'm pretty sure we contacted them on the matter as well (I will look into it).

      Just for your own information; its not that you currently can't cash out due to being 'in-debt' - you can't cash out because you haven't cleared the 500 VPP you need to collect. If you collected those - you could then also cash out. This is due to the technical nature of their system.

      Regardless of this; I agree you should be able to cash out your own money even if you haven't cleared the 500 FPP - since its your own money and you lost our $50. I'll therefore forward your case to our partner management.

      Best regards
      SoyCD
    • Cagey75
      Cagey75
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.07.2008 Posts: 96
      Cheers for the reply. When I mailed them first I was passed on to their affiliates team.


      The rest of the e-mail went -



      "I am sorry but this is a bonus given to you by PokerStrategy.

      The rules that applies with this bonus is that you have to earn 500FPP's in
      order to be able to cash this money out.

      I am sorry you feel cheated but this is the rule and any players who do not
      reach the 500FPP's before the 90days have the $50 taken back.

      You did not reach the 500FPP's in 90 days and so the money is no longer
      yours to transfer or cash out."

      I had stated to them that I felt cheated [by them, not here] out of my own money, as I've deposited a lot more than $50 since I lost the initial bonus money. I wasn't aware they did this, otherwise I'd not have been as quick to deposit.

      Because that bonus deal is long dead, even If I clocked up the 500 FPP [I must have near that in total since I joined[?] now it wouldn't matter.
    • SoyCD
      SoyCD
      Bronze
      Joined: 20.02.2008 Posts: 6,356
      Judging by their E-mail in which they are explaining the money is retracted - it seems there is a general misunderstanding (namely that you are not upset about money being retracted - but about not being able to cash out the money you deposited yourself).

      Their system is set so that it retracts the $50 if you don't earn 500 FPP within 90 days.

      Their system is also set so you can't withdraw until you earn 500 FPP.

      It doesn't matter if the bonus is dead or not. Their system is simply designed so that as long as you haven't reached 500 FPP you can't cash out. The 90 days are no longer relevant for your case as that money is long gone - the problem is that their system still won't let you cash out until you reach 500 FPP even though you deposited. As I said in the original post this shouldn't be that way and we have advised other Poker rooms to fix it. Apparently Stars hasn't yet done so.

      It still changes nothing about the state that if you now reach a total of 500 FPP at PokerStars you could cash out again. You are currently only about halfway there.

      Best regards
      SoyCD
    • Cagey75
      Cagey75
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.07.2008 Posts: 96
      Hmmm, ok. maybe I'll try to clear those points. they didn't make that clear in the e-mails. I hadn't won anything on there really, only played the odd mtt or multi-table sng.

      Last few days I discovered I could do well in the HU games. I deposited $11 last week and had it up to $50 today, mostly from HU games last 2 days, winning more than losing [obviously] And during that cleared the first deposit [of my own money] bonus of $14 [reaching 140FPP since my own personal first deposit]

      Only trouble is, and I said it back to them via e-mail - After they'd made it seem like I did owe them $50, and that my account would always be down $50 - I pretty much blew that $50 or so I had this morning. I figured if I can only withdraw over the 50 I better start trying to build - but I was tilting and blew it all. Will they cover me for that? will they ...F ... so I don't know if I really want to play there much anymore.
    • SoyCD
      SoyCD
      Bronze
      Joined: 20.02.2008 Posts: 6,356
      Hi Cagey75,

      Sorry to hear that but PokerStars will not cover your losses that you made at the poker table. If you lose money due to tilt or bad play this your responsibility and not theirs. As such its pretty much up to you now what you choose to do.

      I'll still forward the issue to our partner management though, so that things like this will hopefully not occur in the future.

      Best regards
      SoyCD
    • Cagey75
      Cagey75
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.07.2008 Posts: 96
      Oh I know that, they were rhetorical questions really.

      What they did was stop me taking out money I had deposited in good faith. here's what their reply was this morn, sent after I had replied back to them saying pretty much what i did on here -

      "Hello,

      Thank you for your email.

      You were given a $50 bonus by PokerStrategy. The rules of this bonus are
      that players must reach 500FPP's within 90 days in order to cashout or
      transfer the bonus.

      You used this bonus at the tables at PokerStars and then did not reach the
      500FPP's before the 90 days. The $50 was then replaced by your next deposit.

      I am sorry but this money will remain in uncleared to cashout until such a time that we can remove the bonus from your account.

      I am sorry but you will never be allowed to cashout/transfer this $50.

      I am sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused but this is the rule surrounding the PokerStrategy $50."


      Looks like it doesn't matter whether or not I do pass 500FPP's now, they'll still hold $50 back, forever it seems. So even though I could play with money under $50, I can never withdraw it, only what I make over $50.

      Very, very unfair and a black mark against Stars in my book. they're blaming here directly, but far as I can see it's on them.
    • SoyCD
      SoyCD
      Bronze
      Joined: 20.02.2008 Posts: 6,356
      Hi Cagey75,

      Our partner management team has contacted PokerStars on the matter. Hope to have more information for you soon.

      Best regards
      SoyCD
    • Alafoe
      Alafoe
      Bronze
      Joined: 28.08.2008 Posts: 202
      Thats the thing I fear about if I will again deposit on my Mansion account that If I did not cleared bonus and lost it I will not be able to manipulate my own money. So I decided never ever deposit to Mansion.

      I think that retraction policies are something what should be incorporated to BRM articles to be more agressive BRM cos to make 500FPP on stars in 3 months with 50$ with 2 hours a day playing would suggest 50BB FL policy...
    • SoyCD
      SoyCD
      Bronze
      Joined: 20.02.2008 Posts: 6,356
      Originally posted by Alafoe
      Thats the thing I fear about if I will again deposit on my Mansion account that If I did not cleared bonus and lost it I will not be able to manipulate my own money. So I decided never ever deposit to Mansion.

      I think that retraction policies are something what should be incorporated to BRM articles to be more agressive BRM cos to make 500FPP on stars in 3 months with 50$ with 2 hours a day playing would suggest 50BB FL policy...
      Hey Alafoe,

      We actually cleared the matter with Mansion and they changed their system so that you can withdraw self deposited money at any time - even if you haven't met the withdrawal conditions.

      As for being able to clear the retraction policies in time; this just depends on your willingness to play more than 1 table. With 2-4 tables it is usually quite easy to get enough points even with less than 2 hours of playing.

      Best regards
      SoyCD
    • Cagey75
      Cagey75
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.07.2008 Posts: 96
      Fair play Mansion, why can't they all do the same?

      As for clearing points, it's a lot harder for someone who plays sng + mtt mostly. I don't know why but I can never settle in cash games, I tend to play way too loose which is weird as I'm more TAG in mtts.

      After I didn't clear the bonus I just presumed that the $50 was dead and buried and if I wanted to continue to play there I'd have to deposit my own cash. Thing is I had no way to deposit online at the time, only recently I set up with moneybookers and can freely deposit/withdraw online. Or at least I thought.

      If it is a case they won't lift that $50 restriction I will never bother to deposit there again, there's enough other sites out there without me needing their service. They lose over time, not me. As I have been depositing similar amounts across many sites to see which I prefer, the plan being to narrow it down to a few that suit me most and only deposit more into them in future, ditching the rest.

      Stars was about to be one of them for HU sngs. After I discovered they're the games I can win most on that site.
    • And3street
      And3street
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.12.2008 Posts: 115
      I recently descovered that I have the same problem. It is very frustrating because they don't let you do what you want with your own money. I realy liked Pokerstrategy until today. Theire support is very bad because they don't advice to do anything and I can understand Why someone can go on tilt because of it. Please someone contact me as well. Is there nothing that can we do about this?
      I have not cleared my bonus, but I hope when I reached 500 points they will remove this nonsense. I just don't want to take this 50 dolars that I earned back it's not faire, because I did not know about this.
      If I'd new about it I would never play at Pokerstars. Please Replay
    • MichaelM
      MichaelM
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.01.2007 Posts: 4,087
      Hey guys

      Let me apologize that there has been no reply to your postings by now.

      Please check our PokerStars $50 Starting capital website.
      The $50 starting capital are all yours if you collect 500 VPPs* within 90 days.
      If you reach the 500 VPPs within the 90 days, then you are in the clear.

      If you guys have further questions or need help with this, please do not hesitate to contact our customer support
    • AlCaTrAzzALZ
      AlCaTrAzzALZ
      Bronze
      Joined: 06.05.2008 Posts: 726
      500VPP in 90 days is incredibly easy to reach... even if your playing sngs...
    • justkyle88
      justkyle88
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.05.2008 Posts: 7,596
      I made up these settings for you. Pretty much the basic at $5 but I made the tables at once and how many tables you play to set as 1 to make it go as close as you could get at $1-$2s.
      So, 9 handed.
      Regular speed.
      # hour: 1
      # at one time: 1
      Hours per week: 14
      avg BI $5

      Correct me if I'm wrong but does this avg about 3sngs a day?

      Any calculated: Monthly VPP Total: 166.

      166 x 4 = 664
    • dotarian
      dotarian
      Bronze
      Joined: 04.06.2009 Posts: 71
      well this thing is happening to me too but on 888poker, i recived my starting 50$ there 1 year ago and lost it all kinda fast then some time ago in the winter there was some freeroll from ps there and i got 75$ from it, then they just wouldn't let me withdraw my winings after having some arguments with the suport they told me that i need to wager 5k$ :f_confused: before i can withdraw the whole sum and that i needed to leave at least 50$ in the acc, since then i just play there for fun with the little fishes and when i get to 100$ i withdraw 50$ leaving the 50$ needed in there, done it twice allready so its just +ev that they wont let me leave :)
    • Hadi
      Hadi
      Bronze
      Joined: 09.08.2009 Posts: 12,303
      Guess there's a positive side to everything then ;)

      But if you'd like us to contact 888 regarding this matter, please tell us.

      Hadi