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How Online Casinos Limit Payouts

By: Fabian Rictor, Wednesday March 31st 2010
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Online casinos limit the maximum payout that players can receive in various games. There are two ways in which this is done. In the first instance they limit the amount that can be wagered and because payout ratios are fixed the maximum payout is automatically fixed. The second way is by directly limiting the payout. This limitation does not apply to progressive jackpot games.

The main reason for limiting the maximum payout is that online casinos do not want to be in a situation of facing unlimited liability. Suppose someone wagers an abnormally large amount and wins or if someone is extremely lucky then the online casino may have to make a payout that they have not provided for and this can ruin their financial planning. Another reason online casinos offer for limiting the maximum payout is that they do not want to encourage players to gamble beyond their means. Most online casinos very clearly spell out what these limits are and how they are to be applied. Also these limits are executed differently for different online casino games.

Since online slot games are the most common casino games it is appropriate to begin the discussion with these games. The maximum amount wagered, more commonly referred to as the total bet per spin, is controlled by limiting the betting options. There is a limit to the number of paylines, the number of coins that can be wagered per payline and also the coin denomination. Since the payouts are a ratio of the coins wagered, there automatically is a limit on the maximum payout. Online slot games also have free spins bonus rounds in which players do not place additional wagers but receive the payouts. In most cases the free spins round can be in retriggered. A lucky streak can really add to the payouts. Therefore most slot games have a limit on the number of times that the free spins bonus round can be retriggered. In addition they also specify an upper limit for the payout in the free spins round. If by chance a player reaches this limit, then the free spins round will come to an end even if all the free spins are not consumed.

Some online slot games and video poker games have a feature called the gamble game. In this game players can try to double or even quadruple their payouts. A lucky streak in this game with a large initial payout can amount to big numbers. Therefore online casinos limit the maximum payout that can be received in the gamble game. Once this limit is reached players cannot play the gamble game and have to return to the main game.

Some online casino games offer very high payouts and also directly limit the maximum payout. These are the games that players have to be most careful of. Some variants of keno offered at online casinos fall in this category. A variant of keno offers a payout of 100,000 for hitting all 15 numbers. At a coin size of $10 this payout amounts to $1,000,000. But there is a limit of a total payout of $250,000. Therefore if a player wagers $10 and hits all 15 numbers he will receive only $250,000 and not $1,000,000. These are some of the issues that arise when online casinos limit payouts and that need to be understood and resolved.

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Comment by: alvrocachi On: April 14, 2010
I hate that they do this and really don't beleive that it's the most fair thing for online casinos to do either. I think that things should change in terms of some of their rules regarding this sort of thing!
Comment by: Joyfulplayer On: April 07, 2010
Yeah I agree with you both makes sense!
Comment by: raytheon On: April 04, 2010
The last thing that any online casino really want's is to go bankrupt so eliminating as much risk as is possible is key to their survival I would have to say.
Comment by: Eric Millier On: April 02, 2010
Yeah definitely makes sense from the casinos stand point to do this sort of thing thus ensuring that they don't go bankrupt. I do beleive that land based casinos do the exact same thing to mitigate their liability and it makes total sense when you think about it.

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