Tennessee Sports Betting Payday Loans Withdrawn Bills

A proposal in Tennessee to block sportsbooks from accepting wagers from payday loan borrowers has failed. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

bad luck this year

A Tennessee bill to prevent sportsbooks from accepting bets from payday loan customers has proven unsuccessful. The bills accompanying the proposal are no longer being debated in the Legislative Assembly, meaning no such changes will be implemented this year. In the end, the bills did not advance because the draft measures were not precise enough.

raised concerns about responsible gambling with some lawmakers

The main purpose of the proposal was to prevent people who have high interest loans from Advance Financial 24/7 from being able to place sports bets with the lender’s sister company, Action 24/7. In January, the bookmaker was granted permission to accept cash deposits from sports bettors at physical branches of Advance Financial in Tennessee. This raised concerns about responsible gambling among some lawmakers, which led to this proposal.

As well as aiming to prevent high-interest borrowers from funding their sports betting accounts, the bill also aimed to prevent people from setting up a sports betting account in an attempt to earn enough money to pay it off. their loans. Lawyers for Action 24/7 had lobbied against the legislation. They did not reveal how many Advance Financial 24/7 payday loan customers also have Action 24/7 accounts.

Another victory for Action 24/7

Action 24/7’s legal team has also been putting out fires elsewhere in recent weeks. A decision released Monday by the Davidson County Chancery Court means the Tennessee Education Lottery (TEL) Board of Directors is unable to take punitive action against Action 24/7 regarding possible cases of fraud.

Indeed, the judge has previously ruled on the matter, and TEL’s board of directors had already called its upholding of Action 24/7’s license suspension its “final decision” on the matter. The state gaming regulator was attempting to have another hearing on the matter to protect the public interest and ensure the operator is fully compliant. However, the judge said “the TEL cannot redo”.

Last month, Chancellor Patricia Moskal ruled that the TEL failed to provide due process to Action 24/7 before suspending its license and that continued suspension would threaten the bookmaker’s financial well-being. Therefore, the judge lifted the operator’s temporary suspension.

The fallout from license suspension

the TEL had suspended Action 24/7’s license on March 18, making it the first online sports betting site to receive a suspension in the United States. The first case of debit card fraud at Action 24/7 took place on March 9 and continued for several days. It was not until March 17 that the operator sent 23 reports of the alleged fraud to the TEL, with regulator chairwoman Susan Lanigan immediately suspending the license. Action 24/7 had only started monitoring the fraud continuously on March 16. A TEL board meeting on March 19 ended with support for Lanigan’s decision to suspend the license.

….our business is being destroyed. Literally, not dramatically, actually. Without question.”

On March 23, Action 24/7 filed a lawsuit against the TEL seeking a temporary injunction to lift the suspension. He also questioned the process followed by TEL to suspend the license and allegations of fraud. Action 24/7 attorney E. Steele Clayton IV told the court, “…our business is being destroyed. Literally, not dramatically, actually. Without question.”

This suspension was active during the March Madness college basketball tournament, a major betting event in the United States each year. The reinstatement of the license came on March 26 after the operator obtained its injunction.

Action 24/7 could still face action from the TEL on another subject. One of the bookmaker’s contract employees set up more than 40 accounts for bettors in other states ahead of the Super Bowl, enabling them to place hundreds of bets. The TEL has assigned this interstate gambling case to law enforcement, with the TEL expected to decide whether to take potential action once law enforcement completes its investigation.

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