German Payment Blocking Complicated By Gambling Debt Ruling

A Munich district court has rejected a claim brought by a German bank against a customer who refused to repay their gambling debt, further complicating the country’s payment blocking regime.

A February ruling, which became final last week, held that Landesbank Berlin could not hold a Visa credit card holder responsible for a gambling debt because online casinos are not legal in Germany.

The court said the payment was marked with a specific merchant category code that identified the transaction stemmed from gambling, and the bank could have easily determined whether the online operators were on a “whitelist” of approved operators.

The player was also charged as much as €30 extra for a transaction carrying that code, according to the ruling.

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