Gift card users need to know their rights when it comes to expiration dates

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Did you get a gift card this holiday season?  If so, it’s important to know your rights as a consumer.

The Credit Card Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 mandates bank issued cards and store gift cards be honored for five years from the date they’re sold or from the last time money was loaded onto them.

Federal law also dictates inactivity fees cannot be charged for twelve months, although, Ohioans get a break under state law.

Ohio allows consumers two years before inactivity fees can be charged.

The Consumers Union warns Ohio’s law governing inactivity fees does not apply to rewards cards, loyalty cards or cards usable at “multiple unaffiliated merchants;” an example would be mall cards usable at any store on the property.