I suppose as a bank person I've always understood you REALLY need to consider what "the fine print" says. Maybe just scanning through the fine print for words like "FEE", "CHARGE", "PENALTY".. you know.. the biggies. But, for those who don't look (scan) over the fine print the FED has provided more consumer protection just for you. NOTE: YOU NEED TO READ THE FINE PRINT!
The FED passed new rules recently limiting (and restricting some) fees and charges on gift cards (they did not remove them). So, maybe now, when you attempt to use that 6mo old gift card...it will not have been eaten up by fees you never knew existed. Be sure to read the writing on the reverse of the card or the accompanying flyer that comes with the next one you receive as a gift. Here's an idea - you could just ask the store (or bank) you buy it from.. In many cases they probably don't even know about the fees/charges. Just ask.. and it can be a learning experience for all parties. Don't get mad, get wise!
I'm not opposed to the fees, but you need to know what they ARE so you're not shocked when the card is emptied... when it was supposed to have $10 remaining on it..
I suppose the good news here is at least now the issuer must DISCLOSE what will be eating away the balance on the card. Honestly, many of them already did disclose this... Yet, many people have stories of the gift card they got from Aunt Sally that was eaten by that evil card companies fees.. Be informed!
Read the summary at the link below:
You might also consider reviewing all the provisions in the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 summarized on the Federal Reserve Board website.
Just be sure to read the fine print so nobody gets hurt.
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