Full Tilt Poker Claims Administration
This is the official website for the Full Tilt Poker Claims Administration, as authorized by the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York. This administration is the result of the settlement agreement and resulting forfeitures resolving the allegations in the amended civil forfeiture complaint in United States v. PokerStars, et al., 11 Civ. 2564 (LBS), pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. The Garden City Group, Inc. ("GCG") was retained by the United States to serve as the Claims Administrator of the forfeited funds.
NOTICE TO PETITIONERS WHO WERE APPROVED IN THE
FIRST ROUND OF PAYMENTS
On April 1, GCG issued approximately 2,200 payments totaling approximately $5 million to Petitioners who timely confirmed their FTP Account Balances online and who were approved for payment in the first round of distributions, but who needed to correct their banking information. Please note that if any such Petitioners did not properly update their bank account information, they will be sent a check to the mailing address on record.
As a reminder, if you received a notice because you have a debt qualifying for collection through the Treasury Offset Program, please send your completed Unified Financial Management System Vendor Request Form to GCG as soon as possible.
MORE THAN 27,500 PAYMENTS TOTALING
APPROXIMATELY $76 MILLION WERE ISSUED ON FEBRUARY 28
On February 28, 2014, GCG issued more than 27,500 payments totaling approximately $76 million to Petitioners who timely confirmed their FTP Account Balances online. Please note that while many Petitioners will receive their ACH on the same day that it was issued, depending on the practices of the Petitioner’s bank, the ACH may not be received for several business days.
Reminders for certain Petitioners who are not included in the first round of payments:
- The deadline for Affiliates to submit a Petition for Remission was Sunday, March 2.
- If you received a notice because you have a debt qualifying for collection through the Treasury Offset Program, please send your completed Unified Financial Management System Vendor Request Form to GCG as soon as possible.
- If you received a notice that your bank account information is incorrect or incomplete, you should have updated your account information online by March 13.
Please continue to check this website for information regarding the next round of payments to approved Petitioners.
NOTICE REGARDING APPROVED PETITIONS AND BANK ACCOUNT INFORMATION
As part of the normal bank account testing conducted prior to issuing ACH payments (as further described below), GCG has identified certain Petitioners who are approved for payment but who submitted account information that was either incomplete or incorrect. On February 21, 2014, GCG sent emails to all such Petitioners with instructions as to how to update their bank account information through the online filing site. Please note that if we do not receive updated, complete and accurate information by March 13, 2014, a check will be sent to the mailing address provided with the Petition. Petitioners contacted by GCG in connection with their bank account information will receive payment in the second round of payments. If any such Petitioners have questions about this process, please contact GCG.
All other Petitioners who have been approved for payment in the first round of distributions and whose bank account information has passed the preliminary testing process will be sent an email notice on Monday, February 24 or Tuesday, February 25 with the amount of their payment. The first round of payments is scheduled to be issued on Friday, February 28.
Notice to Petitioners Who Timely Confirmed Their FTP Account Balance
GCG is in the process of preparing payments for Petitioners who timely confirmed their FTP Account Balance. Beginning on February 13, such Petitioners may notice a zero-dollar transaction in their bank account statement that relates to the Full Tilt Poker Claims Administration. Please be aware that this is a normal part of the bank testing process in preparation for payment of ACHs. However, not all banks post these notices during the testing process, so do not be concerned if you do not receive such a notice and believe you are eligible to receive payment in the upcoming initial distribution.
INFORMATION REGARDING AFFILIATE BALANCES
Affiliate balances shown upon logging into the online filing site were determined by deducting from the account balance all payments labeled as Affiliate payments in the data provided by Full Tilt Poker. The Department of Justice does not consider rakeback an Affiliate payment and will include rakeback payments in approved remission amounts. However, if rakeback was labeled by Full Tilt Poker as an Affiliate payment on a particular account and was therefore deducted from the balance, it is the player's responsibility to dispute the account balance and provide an explanation differentiating rakeback from Affiliate revenue.
INFORMATION REGARDING NOTIFICATION TO AFFILIATES AND PROS
On January 31, 2014, GCG sent approximately 8,400 Notices to Petitioners who were identified as Affiliates by Full Tilt Poker (“FTP”). The Notices provided information and instructions for participating in the Petition process. If you received an email Notice, please be sure to use the logon credentials provided in the Notice when you begin the Petition process.
The deadline for Affiliates to submit a Petition for Remission is March 2, 2014.
Please be advised that a review is still underway concerning those players who were flagged by FTP as Pros. Once this review is complete, a separate notice will be sent to Pros who are deemed eligible to file a Petition for Remission and they will have 30 days from the date of the notice to file a Petition.
INFORMATION REGARDING NOTIFICATION
TO PETITIONERS WITH APPROVED PETITIONS
On January 29, 2014, GCG emailed notices to certain Petitioners who confirmed their FTP Account Balances and are eligible for payment, but who have a delinquent debt qualifying for collection through the Treasury Offset Program. Payments for these Petitioners will be reduced in order to satisfy their debt in part or in whole. To receive the balance of their payment, these Petitioners must complete a Unified Financial Management System Vendor Request Form, which was attached to the email, and return it to GCG within 30 days. Specific questions regarding outstanding debts and offset amounts cannot be addressed by the Department of Justice or GCG. To obtain information on your individual debt, you must contact the Treasury Offset Program at (800) 304-3107 or visit www.fms.treas.gov/debt/top.html for additional information.
IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING PAYMENT TO PETITIONERS
WHO CONFIRMED THEIR FTP ACCOUNT BALANCES
GCG has been informed that the Department of Justice Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section has approved the first round of payments. This distribution will include approximately 30,000 Petitions totaling $82 million submitted by Petitioners with timely, complete Petitions, who confirmed their FTP Account Balances. GCG is currently working with the bank selected by the DOJ to set up the payment process. GCG expects to issue payments via ACH before the end of February 2014 and will post further updates on the payment process in 2-3 weeks.
Please continue to check this website for updates regarding the payment process and this administration.
IMPORTANT REMINDER OF FILING DEADLINE AND
NOTICE TO FULL TILT AFFILIATES AND PROS
The deadline to submit Petitions for Remission is Saturday, November 16, 2013.
There will be a limited extension to the November 16, 2013 filing deadline for players who are Affiliates and for certain players identified as Pros in the data supplied by Full Tilt Poker (“FTP”). For players identified as Affiliates, please see the Notice below. For players identified as Pros, it has been determined that the only Pros who will be deemed ineligible to participate in this remission process are Team Full Tilt players and other players who were playing with funds from FTP or who were compensated by FTP to play on the FTP site. GCG is working with the Government to review the status of players who have been designated as ineligible Pros. Once this review is completed, for any such players who are deemed to be eligible to participate, GCG will email the players to provide instructions regarding the Petition process. Such players will have 30 days from notification to submit a Petition. Please continue to check this website for updated information.
We are in the process of reviewing Petitions filed by Petitioners who confirmed their balances online and who have not disputed their FTP Account Balance or submitted multiple Petitions. We expect payments to be made with respect to such Petitions with confirmed balances by March 31, 2014.
NOTICE TO AFFILIATES OF FULL TILT POKER
It has been determined that Affiliates of Full Tilt Poker ("FTP") will be able to submit Petitions for Remission to recover the portion of their account balances that does not relate to their Affiliate status. Affiliate accounts have been flagged as such because the player signed up with FTP as an Affiliate. If you are an Affiliate, you will be able to submit a Petition for the portion of your account balance that relates to poker transactions, as long as you meet the eligibility criteria. GCG is in the process of receiving updated data from FTP concerning Affiliates' accounts. Once GCG receives and completes its review of the data, we will email all Affiliates of record to provide instructions for the Petition process and provide login credentials for online filing. You will then have 30 days to submit a Petition. The filing process for Affiliates will not delay the processing or payment of other Petitions for Remission.
Please note that the FAQs were recently updated with additional information. Please click here to view the FAQs.
Information Regarding Notification and
Commencement of Online Filing Process
On September 16 and September 17, GCG sent Notices to all potentially eligible Petitioners GCG identified utilizing data supplied by FTP.
If you received an email Notice, please be sure to use the logon credentials provided in the Notice when you begin the Petition process. If you did not receive an email Notice and you believe you are eligible to participate in the remission process, you may file a new Petition for Remission.
Also, on September 17, 2013, GCG sent emails to all players who registered on this website and who were not identified as potentially eligible Petitioners. Such registrants did not receive a Notice with logon credentials. The email provided other important information about the remission process.
You may submit a Petition for Remission by clicking here.
The deadline to submit a Petition for Remission is November 16, 2013.
Information About The Payment Calculation Formula
It has been determined that the calculation formula to be used for the Petition for Remission process will be based on players' final balances with FTP as of April 15, 2011 (the "FTP Account Balances"). Account balances from online poker sites other than FTP are not included in this remission process. Petitioners must also meet all other requirements outlined in 28 C.F.R. § 9.8 to be considered eligible for remission.
If the forfeited funds available for distribution equal or exceed the aggregate FTP Account Balances for all eligible Petitioners, each eligible Petitioner with an approved claim will receive the entirety of his or her FTP Account Balance. If the aggregate FTP Account Balances for all eligible Petitioners exceed the funds available for distribution, payments shall be made to eligible Petitioners on a pro rata basis.
Please continue to check this website for updates regarding this administration.
Summary of the Settlement Agreement and Forfeitures
In July 2012, the United States entered into settlement agreements with FTP and PokerStars - two of the three online poker companies named as defendants in a civil forfeiture action brought by the United States alleging bank fraud, wire fraud, money laundering, and illegal gambling offenses. Under the terms of the settlement with FTP, the company agreed to forfeit virtually all of its assets to the United States (the "Forfeited Full Tilt Assets") in order to fully resolve the action. The amended complaint filed in that action alleged that FTP defrauded its players by misrepresenting to the public that player funds held by FTP were safe, secure and available for withdrawal at any time. In reality, the company did not maintain funds sufficient to repay all of its players and instead, utilized player funds to finance more than $400 million in dividend payments to Full Tilt's owners.
Under the terms of the settlement with PokerStars (the "PokerStars Settlement"), the company agreed, among other things, to forfeit $547 million to the United States and to assume FTP's liability for the approximately $184 million owed by Full Tilt to foreign players. The PokerStars Settlement also provides that PokerStars will acquire the Forfeited Full Tilt Assets from the Government and also precludes PokerStars from offering online poker for real money in the United States unless and until it becomes permissible to do so under relevant law. Utilizing funds forfeited from PokerStars in this action, the Department of Justice has established the Petition for Remission process, by which eligible U.S. fraud victims will be able to seek compensation for their losses.