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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 4
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I have a question regarding a competition that fully

Customer Question

Hi,
I have a question regarding a competition that fully complies with the Gambling Act 2005. The payment provider has decided that I did not fully comply with their terms and now want to refund all entries, totalling £71k. I need some help and advise please.
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Scots Law
Expert:  JGM replied 4 months ago.

Can you explain your situation in a little more detail please.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi,We launched a competition to win our home instead of going down the estate agency route, which wasnt working for us. You can see the competition at www.winyourdreamhome.co.uk We launched with 2 payment providers, one of which is paypal as a similiar competition was using them www.winacountryhouse.co.uk We were confident of paypal as we had an account for years and win a country house was using them successfully - and continues to do so.A few days into the competition paypal without warning stopped our account and attempts over the past 10 days to find out why yielded no response. I wrote directly to the MD to ask that he step in and at least answer why our account was suspended and what we could do to fix it. Finally yesterday we received an answer which I have pasted below. Despite one other competition running which is identical to ours - inc the Terms of Business - Paypal have not only decided to refund all entries as in their words we did not seek prior approval to run a competition, could I have reasonably been expected to know this was the case when they have allowed another almost identical site to continue. I took this as a precedence as acceptance such competitions were allowed,and despite asking paypal they have not sent a copy of the Acceptable Use Policy when I created my account several years ago.Extract from Paypal email yesterday: In the PayPal Acceptable Use Policy, which is agreed by all PayPal account holders upon the creation of a PayPal account, it is explained that pre-approval is required for ‘any activity with an entry fee and a prize, including games of skill (whether or not legally defined as gambling) and sweepstakes’. No pre-approval was sought or obtained by you for the type of transactions you wished to receive through your PayPal account. As soon as the unapproved activity was identified by our systems on 23 June 2017, your account was placed under permanent limited access as it was found to be in breach of PayPal’s Acceptable Use Policy.In relation to the balance held on your account, as we cannot process these payments we will be refunding them. We have determined that all transactions need to be returned to the senders. Please note that PayPal will initiate the steps to process these reversals in accordance with the provisions of the PayPal User Agreement section 9.1. and section 10.2d.While similar projects may have been accepted on the PayPal platform in the past, we are not in a position to support transactions relating to house prize draws going forward. Our experience shows that these prize draws present an unusual challenge. After much consideration, we have decided not to allow PayPal to be used to buy tickets for entry to house prize draws in the UK in order to protect consumers, PayPal and the people running such draws from the associated risks.
Expert:  JGM replied 4 months ago.

So you are in breach of the PayPal conditions from what you say above?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I don't think it as black and white as us being in breach of their conditions. Are you able to give me an opinion on the information provided above?
Expert:  JGM replied 4 months ago.

I'm sorry but I think it is. If you think otherwise then please state your argument and I will look at it.