Federal Reserve Proposes Rules On Gift Cards

Here’s your chance to sound off on another consumer protection issue. In accordance with the CARD Act, today the Federal Reserve proposed new rules that would protect consumers from fees and expiration dates on gift cards, and they’ll soon be accepting comments on the rules.

Here’s what the rules would enforce:

– Cards can’t expire for at least 5 years from date of purchase.
– Monthly fees can’t be applied until the card has been inactive for one year.
– Only one fee can be charged per month.

Feel free to submit comments on the proposed rules. You have to wait until they’ve been published in the Federal Register, the daily government paper that that prints everything going on in the government. The Federal Reserve doesn’t have a date for when that happens, only that it will be soon. Once they’re published, you have 30 days to submit feedback.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before [TBD].

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. R-1377, by any of the following methods:

Agency Web Site: http://www.federalreserve.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments at http://www.federalreserve.gov/generalinfo/foia/ProposedRegs.cfm.

Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

E-mail: regs.comments@federalreserve.gov. Include the docket number in the
subject line of the message.

FAX: (202) 452-3819 or (202) 452-3102

Mail: Jennifer J. Johnson, Secretary, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
20th Street and Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20551

If you want to be the first to know when the proposed rules will be published (or more realistically, if you want to be one of the only people to know), you can subscribe to a daily email that lists what’s in the Federal Register that day. Visit the Government Printing Office’s LISTSERV and click the “Online mailing list archives” link, then on the next screen click the third link, “FEDREGTOC-L – Federal Register Table of Contents.”

“Federal Reserve proposes rules to restrict fees and expiration dates on gift cards” [Federal Reserve]
“Fed proposes new rules to protect users from fees” [Los Angeles Times]
(Photo: Mr. Thomas)