Saturday, October 1, 2022

NJ Resident Sues FanDuel for Violating the State’s Consumer Fraud Act

FanDuel has been under scrutiny by a New Jersey man who claims that the sportsbook did not allow him to withdraw $300 and thus, engaged in a civil conspiracy. Paul Manganaro claims that since FanDuel refused to transfer his funds, it violated the Consumer Fraud Act of the state.

A Class Action Suit Might Be Filed against the Operator

Manganaro filed a lawsuit in New Jersey’s Superior Court in March in which he claimed that FanDuel is incorrect, fraudulent, and misleading when it comes to withdrawals. Now, he wants to take matters even further.

He wants to file a class-action suit against the operator which recently launched in Wyoming. Manganaro claims that the class action suit will be on behalf of all NJ residents that were blocked by FanDuel from withdrawing the money that they didn’t want to spend at this operator.

According to Manganaro, he deposited $500 at FanDuel on February 11, 2022. He claims that he didn’t opt-in for any of the operator’s promotions and on the following day, he placed a $200 bet on the Rams to cover the spread of the Super Bowl, which they failed to do, even though they won. 

The situation complicated when Manganaro requested to withdraw the remaining $300, but FanDuel denied it. In an email, received on February 18, FanDuel stated that registered players can only withdraw eligible promotions of winnings. The operator also stated that to withdraw the balance, he would have to wager it.

Manganaro Claims That FanDuel Contradicts Itself

The suit by Manganaro claims that the FanDuel T&Cs actually contradict themselves. First, they claim that withdrawals are only intended for winnings and if customers want a refund for their recent deposits, they need to get in touch with the customer support team.

Then, they stated that FanDuel may “conduct checks for Terms compliance,” one of which is anti-fraud checks. People that are subject to those checks may close their accounts and can deposit/withdraw their winnings at any time.

At the same time, FanDuel’s marketing campaigns promote easy deposits and fast cashouts accompanied by security and convenience. The lawsuit points out that the terms and conditions are misleading and that FanDuel is aware of the fact that the longer it holds players’ money and the more difficult it is for them to cash the funds out, the more likely they are to gamble them on the platform and lose them.

Manganaro’s suit wants all unused balances to be restitution, but it also seeks compensatory damages, changes to FanDuel’s T&Cs, as well as any other relief that the court deems appropriate.

FanDuel and DraftKings Face Lawsuits in Other States

FanDuel and DraftKings are under a lot of attention recently. ESPN’s Darren Rovell reported that a class action suit against these two operators was filed on October 8 last year in a Manhattan federal court and both companies were accused of fraud, false advertising, and negligence. This Monday, Rovell reported a second suit of the same character, filed in Illinois.

The first case was filed by Adam Johnson from Kentucky after it was revealed that employees of the two companies were allowed to participate in each other’s contests. While speaking to Sports Illustrated, Michael McCann, a Massachusetts lawyer, stated that DraftKings employees won more than $6 million by playing FanDuel games.

McCann stated that Johnson argues that employees had an unfair advantage as they may have had inside information, while other participants were misled that they had a fair chance against other competitors.

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