What Are Source of Funds (SoF) Checks?

source of funds concept imageWhen you’re engaging in online betting of any kind, receiving a Source of Funds (SoF) check request may be quite a daunting thing. After all, it sounds very official and like it could impact you severely. Yet it’s nothing to worry about. A check of this kind is done by sportsbooks and other online gambling sites to ensure you have the best kind of customer experience.

In most cases, SoF checks are requested from those people who deposit and gamble high amounts of money online. In other instances, a SoF check may need to take place if someone makes an uncharacteristically high deposit in comparison to the norm. It is used to prevent the gambling industry being used for the proceeds of crime. At the same time, it prevents people from gambling with money that either isn’t theirs or that they cannot afford.

If a site asks for documentation to prove source of funds, then it is vital that you send them this information. The evidence you submit should identify the source of the money you are using for gambling. It needs to match up with and substantiate your betting activity that has taken place at your chosen online sportsbook or casino.

Gambling sites are obliged under their license conditions to carry out these checks in certain instances.  If they don’t do these checks they can be fined or even lose their license.  They are also required to keep your data secure and private.

What Happens in a Source of Funds Check?

ticking checklistSoF checks aren’t something that happen all the time. There are specific occasions when they will be requested and become necessary for players to go through.

It would be ideal to utilise an example to further explain why a SoF check may crop up. Let’s say that you usually deposit a £100 bankroll every month and you wager around £1 on each bet. That stands out as being the norm for your sports betting activity. Yet one month your account plays host to a deposit of £1,000 instead, and wagers of £20 per market come into play. That’s a big difference to what is considered the norm for you and your betting account.

In this circumstance, an online gambling site may take note of the dramatic shift in activity. If it is flagged for this, then you may be required to submit to a SoF check. Even you can see why such account activity stands out as being particularly irregular. To a gambling operator, it stands out as being potentially fraudulent or maybe even linked with problem gambling. It’s more likely that you have come into a larger portion of money than normal and decided to have a bit of a splurge on your favourite sports. Yet a sportsbook cannot know this outrightly.

All you need to do is prove that you have the necessary funds to cover this activity. If you can do this, then a SoF check is nothing to worry about. This type of check is beneficial for you.

The primary reason for the check is to make sure that the money in your betting account belongs to you. You need to be able to show where it came from in the first place. It cannot be from someone else’s account, from a loan or credit, or from a business, for example. It also cannot come from an illegal source.

Evidence Required for a SoF Check

If an online gambling site does contact you and requests a SoF check, then you need to know what this means for you. The request may come through email, telephone or even through a message via the sportsbook website itself. It is common for you to have to complete this check before you can continue gambling. Thus, the deposited funds that flag up as being suspicious will be locked until the SoF check is completed.

Certain documents need to be submitted to go through the check successfully. The operator may ask for one or more of the following documents to be able to confirm the funds are from a legitimate source:

  • Details of your occupation and the salary that you receive from it.
  • A copy of a recent payslip from your place of employment.
  • A copy of a recent bank statement, which displays your salary being paid in.
  • An e-wallet statement, which displays your name, account number and all payments in and out.
  • A copy of a statement displaying a recent deposit into the sportsbook/casino account, confirming that you own the account.

Usually, online sportsbooks and casinos will dictate the SoF check details in the terms and conditions that are free to access for all visitors. These will differ in their language slightly from site to site, but the general consensus behind the rules is all the same.

It is not difficult to submit the documentation requested either, with most sites accepting copies via email. You may also be able to upload the documents directly through the website once logged in to your account. Yet the casino or sportsbook will provide you with the information on how best to do this if a SoF check is required.

If you don’t complete the required SoF checks, then the likelihood is that your account will be restricted or closed. The money in that account could also be locked and held by the sportsbook/casino until legal proceedings have taken place.

As long as you tell the truth on where the funds you’re betting with came from, all should be fine. If you lie about the money or it is discovered that you obtained it through criminal activity, the operator will take the matter to the authorities.

Unacceptable Funds for Online Gambling

betting on phone with credit cardIf you have doubts about the funds you’re intending to deposit at an online sportsbook or casino, then there is a chance that you shouldn’t proceed with the transaction. Some people don’t consider certain funds to be bad, though.

Yet there are various instances where money may seem legitimate to deposit, and it isn’t by law. Here are some instances of unacceptable funds for online betting purposes.

Personal Loans and Credit Cards

Various gamblers have, in the past, taken out personal loans to fund their gambling habits. Whether that money is used in part or wholly for gambling, this is unacceptable. Not too long ago, before the credit card ban, a man chose to gamble on his credit card, losing around £2,000, and then ended up betting with money from five different credit cards. He then took out a personal loan to support his habit.

Personal loans should never be used in such a way. Gambling can be addictive, and when you’re gambling with money that you do not possess via a loan, this is a slippery slope to go down. If a sportsbook discovered this kind of activity, it would take the action to halt your access.

When it comes to credit cards, these were banned for gambling deposits in 2020 in the UK, so you cannot utilise them anyway.

Money from a Business

Taking money from a business you work for or own to fund your betting habit is never a good route to take. Various people have been caught engaging in this kind of activity, which has resulted in awful consequences.

Money that is stolen in this way (or any other way) will never outdo a SoF check. The authorities will instantly be contacted by an operator discovering stolen money in an account.

Money from Friends and Family

If money from friends and/or family is given to you as a gift, then it is your to do with as you please. Yet if they are loaning you money and you use it for gambling, the story is somewhat different. It would be highly irresponsible of you to loan money from someone close to you and then use it for gambling purposes.

If a SoF check is requested and you have used loaned money, then the operator would take proper action. If it was a gift, you need to ensure you inform the sportsbook.

Redundancy Money

Losing your job by being made redundant is never a good thing, but spending any redundancy money on gambling isn’t a good way to deal with it, either. It has been for some people in the past, though.

If someone is using redundancy money to deposit and place large bets online, then alarm bells will ring for a site. SoF checks will expose this kind of behaviour.