PokerStars Refunds New Jersey and Pennsylvania Players After Years-Long Rake Error

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In a rare oversight for PokerStars that led to the overcharging of rake for its New Jersey and Pennsylvania players, all affected players have been refunded by the operator and the rake error has been rectified.

A configuration error on the operator’s behalf meant that NJ and PA players were being charged 10 cents extra rake at $0.50/$1.00 stakes.

The mistake was identified after a 2+2 user discovered that he was being charged a maximum of 60 cents when playing heads up, even though as per PokerStars’ website, the rake in that game is capped at 50 cents.

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All players impacted by this error have been fully refunded the overcharged amount.

A PokerStars representative quickly responded to the thread and confirmed that indeed an error was made at their US-facing websites (PokerStars NJ and PokerStars PA) that resulted in an incorrect rake cap.

“We acknowledge that a mistake was present in the rake section of our websites for the New Jersey and Pennsylvania platforms,” said Luke Staudenmaier, Head of Poker Operations in a statement on the 2+2 forum.

Staudenmaier added that “the websites wrongly stated the cap was $0.50. This was due to a human error and the websites have now been updated to reflect the correct cap of $0.60.”

As a result of this mistake, the operator has reimbursed all affected players on both sites with a full refund for all hands dating back to the launch of the site where extra rake was taken.

“All players impacted by this error have been fully refunded the overcharged amount. The error was present on both websites since day one and as such, the refunds encompassed every hand dealt under the above circumstances. In addition, we have reviewed our rake structures in all licenses against our websites and can confirm they are displaying the correct information,” Staudenmaier added.

This is not the first instance that an online poker operator ended up charging extra rake due to a configuration error. Back in 2015, a similar rake error occurred at PokerStars’ dot-com poker room leading to charging players extra rake at the Euro denominated tables.

However, once the mistake was identified, PokerStars made the decision to reimburse affected players, not only the amount they had overpaid, but double that figure.

A couple of Indian online poker rooms such as Adda52 and Spartan Poker have also mistakenly charged extra rake in the past.

Not all errors end up being bad for players. In 2014, a bug spotted by a player at PokerStars cost the operator tens of thousands of dollars after it ended up paying out extra rewards points to dot-com players for months.

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Pennsyl-MANIA 3 and New Jersey Classic Wrap Up

Just before the new year, both the PokerStars US regulated sites hosted big daddy tournaments with PokerStars PA hosting Pennsyl-MANIA (the biggest guaranteed tournament in the state) and PokerStars NJ running the $100,000 guaranteed New Jersey Classic.

The third edition of Pennsyl-MANIA featuring a $200 buy-in and $500,000 guarantee attracted a decent turnout of 2309 entrants but not enough to cover its guarantee as it fell short by $70.5k. Still, it ended up being the second-largest tournament in Pennsylvania online poker’s history.

It’s counterpart, the New Jersey Classic tournament with the same buy-in did not disappoint as it drew 653 entries to go past its $100k guarantee by over $21k.

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