• Attention Gift Card Issuers, Program Managers and Retailers: Aug. 22 Deadline for Compliance with Gift Card Rules Looms
  • August 24, 2010
  • Law Firm: Barnes Thornburg LLP - Indianapolis Office
  • Gift card issuers, program managers and retailers should confirm that their gift card program is in compliance with new rules regarding expiration dates and fees, pursuant to Title IV of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act (CARD Act), which becomes effective for all gift cards sold on or after Aug. 22, 2010.

    Expiration Date
    The expiration date, if any, cannot be earlier than 5 years after the date of purchase, or the date more money is added to the card, and the terms of expiration are clearly and conspicuously stated. If the expiration date on the gift card is prior to the expiration date of the unspent money on the card, the consumer can request a replacement card at no charge.

    Limit on Fees
    All fees must be clearly disclosed on the gift card or its packaging.

    No dormancy, inactivity, usage, service or maintenance fees may be imposed unless:

    1. There has been no activity on the gift card for 12 months; and
    2. The fee is clearly and conspicuously disclosed before purchase; and
    3. Only one fee is charged per month.

    Penalties for non-compliance may include actual damages or statutory damages of $100 to $1,000 per consumer (class action suits are subject to a damage cap) plus costs and attorney fees.