Signing up and depositing money with a sportsbook is easy. Collecting any winnings you’ve accrued is where the process gets a little more complicated. For instance, if you’ve reached the point where you’re ready to make your first withdrawal, then you need to make sure you’ve cleared the wagering requirements on your sign-up bonus. Otherwise you’ll be forfeiting some of the funds you inevitably plan on withdrawing.

There are also justifiable hurdles that can postpone withdrawals. As mentioned before, if you haven’t gone through the account verification process before your first withdrawal, you will be required to send documents verifying your identity before you can get your money out. This can delay your ability to put in a withdrawal request by up to 72 hours. The process is long, but a necessary step sportsbooks take to ween out any potential fraudsters.

The amount of documentation needed can varies by sportsbook, but every book will request a government-issued ID at a minimum. This is any valid photo ID that bears the same name as the betting account holder: a driver’s license, health card, passport, etc. You will need to send either a scan or photograph of this identification to the sportsbook for processing.

You may also need to provide documentation with your billing information on it, such as a utility bill or bank statement. If you choose to deposit by credit card, you’ll need to send a photo of both the front and back of the card, and possibly fill out a credit card verification form as well.

Methods for providing these documents will vary be website; some will require you to email images to their verification department; some may have the option to upload documents directly to the website.

Because of how long verification takes, it’s important to pay attention to everything a given sportsbook needs to meet their guidelines. There’s nothing more frustrating than finding out that you also need to send a picture of you holding your ID after you’ve already been waiting for 48 hours. If you need assistance with sending verification documents, make use of your sportsbooks’ customer service, either by email, phone call or over web chat.

Pro tip: Payout speeds can vary by sportsbook which is why we’ve included each sportsbooks payout speed on our top 5 list. Stick with sportsbooks that have Good or Fast reported speeds and stay clear of those that have slow payouts.

How to withdraw funds

Once your identity and documentation has been verified, you can place a withdrawal request. Simply go to the “Cash Out” page or window (which may also be titled Cashier, Withdrawal, or Wallet), input how much money you would like to take out and select your preferred method of payment. Before you withdraw, be aware of how much of your money is actually eligible to be withdrawn. Sportsbooks may “lock” some of your funds until you clear a bonus rollover, so while your account may have $500 in it, only $200 may be eligible for withdrawal without suffering a penalty.

After you’ve input the amount you want to take out, click the “request withdrawal” button. The sportsbook will then review your account information to make sure the request can be processed. Most sportsbooks state that a withdrawal request can take up to 48 hours to review and process, but that’s largely dependant on the volume of requests they’re receiving. Usually, you will hear back about whether the request was successful within 24 hours.

If, at any point during process, you decide you’d rather leave the funds in your account, you can cancel your withdrawal request. Just visit the same page on which you requested the withdrawal and there should be an option to cancel. You can even cancel the withdrawal request after it has been processed, as long as the money hasn’t been “shipped” yet.

It’s important to leave adequate funds in your account while your withdrawal request is being reviewed. If your account has $2,000 in it and you request a withdrawal of $1,200, you can’t then go ahead and bet $1,000 on a basketball game that night. It’s also worth remembering that a withdrawal can’t be processed at the same time that a deposit is pending. If you’ve just topped up your account, you’ll have to wait a few days until you can withdraw funds.

Each sportsbook will have different minimum and maximum amounts you are allowed to withdraw at one time. The lowest minimum withdrawal we’ve encountered is $10, while maximums can vary greatly based on the size and scale of the sportsbook, but they’ll always allow for at least a few thousand dollars to be taken out at a time.

Not only do withdrawal limits vary by site, your chosen method of withdrawal will also impact how much you can take out. For example, a withdrawal by cheque will carry different limits and fees than a withdrawal by Bitcoin. But sportsbooks will always waive fees for your first withdrawal, and some even allow for one free withdrawal per month. If you plan on taking out money more frequently than that, be aware that most books have a limit of one withdrawal request per week.

Payout options

When it comes to withdrawal options, you may be required to use the same method as you selected for depositing funds. But there are some cases where that won’t be possible, like in the United States, where credit cards can be used to deposit money, but cannot be used as a method of withdrawal. In those cases, it’s important to know the advantages and disadvantages of each of the more popular withdrawal methods, including: cryptocurrency, person-to-person, eWallet, wire transfers and credit card/debit card.

  • Credit/debit card – In most nations outside of the United States, funds can be returned to the same debit and credit cards used to make a deposit. (If it’s an option in your country, it will be shown as a possible withdrawal method.) After processing, the withdrawal will occur in about three business days, and doesn’t normally carry a fee. The minimum amount you are required to withdraw is typically pretty low.
  • Cryptocurrency – Once a Bitcoing or Litecoin withdrawal request is processed, payment may be transferred to your online wallet in as fast as 15 minutes. Sportsbooks typically won’t charge you for withdrawals using Bitcoin or Litecoin, but with these services, you may have to include a small “miner’s fee” in order to ensure your transaction is processed quickly. Cryptocurrency’s have the lowest minimum amount required on withdrawals; but keep in mind that, while the sportsbook will send you the total value of your withdrawal at the time of processing, these cryptocurrencies have highly volatile exchange rates. A $1,000 withdrawal could drop in value to $800 or rise to $1,200 before you check your online wallet again.
  • Person-to-person – The fees on a Western Union or MoneyGram transfer make this a rather unattractive method for withdrawal. They also have rather high minimum withdrawals (e.g. $100) and low maximums (e.g. $800). But if you’re playing in the United States, it’s one of the few payment options available to you. Just be aware that transactions can get flagged and canceled if you are regularly making deposits and withdrawals to offshore books.
  • eWallet – After requests are processed, payments to an eWallet will occur within two days; eWallets carry low minimums on withdrawals and little to no fees for payments. However, withdrawing the money out of a Skrill or Neteller account typically carries a fee with it, so keep that in mind when you sign up for the service.
  • Wire transfer – A bank wire transfer allows for large maximums on withdrawals, so it’s a common method with high rollers, particularly in the United States, where withdrawal methods are limited. Wire transfers take more time to setup, as you’ll have to contact the sportsbook for specific instructions. Once processed, it can take anywhere from two to ten (or more) business days for your payment to reach you. This method is also subject to high fees.
  • Physical check – The oldest methods are still used by a few sportsbooks, but unsurprisingly, getting a cheque in the mail takes the longest to collect. Because it’s an inconvenient method, it can have a higher minimum amount than other options. A cheque by courier can also carry a large fee if you’re requesting multiple withdrawals in a month.

Dormant accounts

If you think you’re finished with online betting, at least for the foreseeable future, make sure to withdraw all of your remaining funds. Accounts that are inactive — i.e. no deposits, withdrawals or bets for a year (or 18 months, depending on the book) — can be declared dormant. Dormant accounts are often subject to a monthly fee until the balance reaches zero. Policies vary by sportsbooks. (Be sure to read the dormant account policy on the sites(s) you use.) But each site will eventually claim your funds if an account remains inactive for too long.