This holiday, there is a pretty good chance you may have received gift cards from friends, relatives and coworkers. Gift cards are available for almost every store or website you can think of from gas stations to fast food restaurants to your favorite mall store. Now is the perfect time of year to brush up on laws in Georgia regarding gift cards.
Gift cards seem like a great gift idea, but many companies charge hidden fees or carry expiration dates. Make sure you are aware of these fees before giving a gift card and read the terms on the back of any gift card you are given.
In 2005 Georgia lawmakers passed the Georgia Gift Card Law in order to protect consumers against companies using gift cards to get cash and then not allowing customers to use them. This law applies to all gift cards, gift certificates and pre-paid cards which were purchased in the state of Georgia. This law dictates that all gift cards sold must list on the back:
- Expiration date, if there is one, that is printed large enough to avoid confusion
- Any fees, for example nonuse or dormancy fees if the card is not used right away
If any cards do not follow these rules or fail to follow the terms set on the back of the cards, you should contact the Georgia Office of Consumer Affairs. If you feel that a business has violated the Georgia Gift Card Law and has cost you a great deal of money or emotional damage, you may want to speak with a consumer rights lawyer.