Bovada Poker has stopped offering real money online poker to the residents of the state of Washington. In a letter to its customers, the US-based Bodog site has cited difficulty in “finding and maintaining acceptable payment options” for its players. Furthermore, Bovada officials have stated that these players must contact the site about suitable payment options before April 30th or risk the possibility of losing their account balance.
Since its inception in December, Bovada.lv and its parent company BoDog have faced significant amount of pressure from the US government and the tough online gaming environment. In February 2012, Federal prosecutors unsealed indictments against founder Calvin Ayre and three high ranking officials after a 6 year investigation. The unused domain name Bodog.com was seized along with the indictments of Bodog operators. Last month, Bovada poker banned players from Maryland citing similar payment processing issues. Bovada has currently stopped accepting new customers from the state of New York and Utah.
Despite the tough regulatory environment in the United States, Bodog and its US based site, Bovada, have been able to navigate through the hostile territory. The troubled site changed the domain name to Bodog.eu after the events of Black Friday and Blue Monday. In December 2011, the US based site changed its domain name to Bovada.lv after the licensing group, the Morris Mohawk Gaming Group, banned the use of the Bodog name. Currently, the Bodog network includes two other sites that serve different parts of the world: Bodog.co.uk and Bodog88 for the Asian community.
Bovada.lv remains the second largest provider of online poker to US-based customer behind the Merge Gaming network. The Merge network faced similar pressure after the events of Black Friday and temporarily banned players from the same states. Bovada poker plans to continue offering online gaming to US based customers, though it may have to navigate through a tough regulatory environment.