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You got limited. Now what?


One of the problems many successful bettors run into, especially with the legal books, is being limited on the amount you can wager.  Depending on the book, some will cut your limits by 50% of your normal bet while others will cut you down to a couple dollars.  If you scroll through #GamblingTwitter, you’ll see screenshots of bettors getting limited to $1.50 per bet.  Most books will stay away from fully banning players so they can use the “we let everyone play” line, but by cutting their limits drastically – they’re doing the same thing.

As Ferris mentions in his “So you got stiffed?” article, I also feel that being limited by a sportsbook is a badge of honor within the betting community.  It’s a shitty issue to deal with, but it validates your skill as a sports bettor.

When I first started betting, being limited was in the back of my mind, but once you do it long enough and start increasing unit size, you realize it’s no longer if but when.  So what do you do when it happens and can you avoid it?

Why Do They Limit You?

There are a wide range of reasons and they vary from operator-to-operator, but here are the most common.

  • Winning.  Most people think that if you’re winning too much money then you’ll be limited or banned.  While this is definitely one reason, they also look at your long-term winning percentage and CLV.  There are plenty of stories about $100 bettors being limited because they have a good winning percentage and tend to beat the closing line.
  • Arbing. Arbitrage betting is another red-flag to books.  Arb betting is taking both sides of a bet when there is a large discrepancy between the odds at two different books.  Although it’s difficult to prove since bets are placed at separate sportsbooks, if a book suspects you free-rolling constantly – they will limit you
  • Promo Abuse. This one is very simple. Books don’t like if you only bet using their free money.  Doing that is an easy way to get on the banned or limited list.

How Do Sportsbooks Notify You?

It varies. Some of the books will send you an email letting you know that your limits have been reviewed and are limited.  Others will let you know when you try placing a bet.  They may approve X amount of your wager while the remaining amount gets sent away for approval or they simply will reject the bet.

Can You Get Out of Limited Purgatory?

Like an idiot, I assumed I could reach out to customer service and sweet talk my way into getting my account back to normal.  I mean after all I wasn’t betting 10s of thousands of dollars.  But don’t expect any help from the customer service team.   You’ll receive a boilerplate response that is very open-ended stating that they weigh the exposure they have on any side for any game and can decide if they want to accept or reject the bet.

Ways To Avoid (or delay)

  • Have plenty of outs.  The easiest way is to have plenty of options.  If you’re a winning bettor, you will be limited at some point.  There’s no way around it.  The key is to have access to so many books that it doesn't slow you down.  Some ways to help:
    • Open an account at every legal book in your state/region.
    • Use the top offshore books, who rarely, if ever, limit.  Bookmaker, BetOnline, CRIS and Pinnacle (if you’re lucky enough to be in Canada or have a Canadian friend) are top rated offshore books that are known to take action.  Open accounts with other offshore accounts as well, but being limited is a higher chance
    • If you live in Vegas or have a runner in the city, bet through Circa.  Circa is very vocal regarding setting the same limits for everyone and not banning or limiting.  Here’s a good article from their team about how they view pro bettors and limits.
    • Find a local bookie.  Local bookies operate Pay Per Head (PPH) websites.  Although you bet through on a site, no money is deposited into your account and you pay the bookie or collect directly.  Of course, these guys can limit or ban you (as you can see below), but it’s all about options.  Luckily, this guy paid after banning the account…
  • Be a loser.  Make bad bets every once in a while.  Throw in a couple parlays, tie up some credit with futures, tease totals – do something to make you look like you don’t know what you’re doing.  Of course, this won’t last, but it can buy some time and allow you to find some other accounts.
  • Grow a beard. A “beard’ is someone that places bets on your behalf.  Open an account in a friend’s name, girlfriends name, aunt, uncle - whoever you can think of.  Have someone physically go into casinos to place bets for you.  There are plenty of ways to conceal your betting identity.  I wonder if that’s why women are signing up for betting apps at a faster rate than men…



There is no way to have a full-proof system to avoid being limited.  If you bet long enough and win over time, it’s inevitable, but it is important to take all of the steps to avoid having your accounts slashed.  You’ll hear many pros say that finding reliable accounts to bet into becomes more difficult than picking winners.  Think of it as just another challenge on the road to become a successful sports bettor.



Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by our Community Content writers do not reflect the opinions of The Hammer Betting Network nor our affiliates. The Community Content opinions are based upon information that the writer considers reliable, but neither The Hammer Betting Network nor its affiliates, nor the companies with which such participants are affiliated, warrant its completeness or accuracy, and it should not be relied upon as such.