Finnish online players could recoup losses

17 January 2008

FINLAND -- As reported in the Helsingin Sanomat: "The gambling pastimes of Finnish online poker addicts may become seriously complicated if the authorities' latest plans materialise. Helsingin Sanomat has received information, according to which the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is planning to introduce an amendment to the law on gambling that would enable Internet gamblers to claim back their losses. The payer would be either the firm providing the online poker services, a credit card company, or the winning player in the game.

"According to the Ministry, in practice this would mean that the foreign companies running the Internet poker services would in all probability prevent Finnish players from ever taking part in the game. A player protected by such a law would be altogether too great a risk to the game organiser…"

"The idea was conceived by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health civil servants together with the compiler of the report, the University of Joensuu professor of Law and Economics Kalle Määttä. According to Määttä, such a law does not yet exist anywhere in the world…"