Pokerstars Releases Statement Announcing That They Are Blocking Real Money Play to Residents of Washington StatePublished on September 30th, 2010 12:03 pm EST
Pokerstars released a statement earlier today in which they announced that they "would cease providing real-money poker to residents of Washington State."
Pokerstars said that in light of last week's Washington Supreme Court ruling that upheld the state's Internet gaming prohibition, they would be blocking "real money play by Washington residents on the Pokerstars.com site". Pokerstars said that they made the decision after "extensive consultation" with their legal advisors.
Here is the entire statement:
"30 September 2010 - PokerStars today announced that it would cease providing real-money poker to residents of Washington State. To date, PokerStars has operated in Washington on the basis of legal opinions where the central advice was that the state could not constitutionally regulate Internet poker, or at least could not discriminate in favor of local cardrooms and against online sites. Last week, however, the Washington Supreme Court for the first time rejected that position and upheld the state's Internet gaming prohibition.
In light of this decision, following extensive consultation with our legal advisors, we believe that the right course of action is to now block real money play by Washington residents on the PokerStars.com site. This policy will remain in effect until the law changes or subsequent legal challenges succeed. Our decision to block real money play in Washington does not affect the balance of funds in customer accounts, which remain completely safe. Our payment services team continues to be available to Washington State residents to assist with cashout requests.
We regret this decision, which will no doubt disappoint our customers in Washington State. However, in all of the jurisdictions where we operate, we are committed to making responsible decisions that are based on a full and considered understanding of the most up-to-date legal advice.
PokerStars remains supportive of passing sensible Internet poker regulation in the United States that will provide much-needed tax revenues and formalize consumer protections. PokerStars operates under those conditions, complying with rigorous licensing regimes, for its worldwide operations in the Isle of Man (UK), and for local operations in Italy, France and Estonia."
Source: Pokerstars.com - Pokerstars statement on the blocking of players from Washington State
This is going into effect right away - so quickly, in fact, that Washington state residents will be unregistered from any tournaments that haven't started yet.
If you are a resident of Washington state and are wondering about your account balance, FPPs, T$, etc., then you should visit the Pokerstars.com Washington State FAQ here.
There is not much to say other than this really, really sucks.
No word yet on if Full Tilt Poker is going to follow suit..
Filed Under: Poker Legal Issues