To protect consumers, Georgia enacted the Gift Card Integrity Act of 2005. This act requires the following regarding gift cards include any terms and conditions and also make the terms and conditions available upon request. If there is an expiration date, it must be clearly printed on the card, as well as any non-use or dormancy fees.
In addition to the state legislation, Georgia also follows the federal regulations that require that any expiration date must be at least 5 years from the date of purchase or the date money was added to the card. If there are inactivity fees, they cannot be charged unless the card has not been used for at least one year and then monthly at the most.
Georgia's consumer protection is less than what is required on a federal level, so compared to other states the consumer protection seems weak. We hope Georgia will be improving these laws in the future.
British politician and social reformer James Oglethorpe campaigned against the poor conditions in debtors prisons and wanted to establish a colony for the poor and released debtors. In 1732 King George II approved the colony's charter making Georgia one of the 13 original colonies. The state is named in his honor.
Georgia is the nation's top producer of peanuts, pecans and peaches. Gainesville, GA, is the "Chicken Capital of the World" and it is illegal to eat chicken with a fork. Georgia is also home to the sweetest onion in the world, the Vidalia Onion. Georgia is the largest state east of the Mississippi River. Coca Cola was invented and is headquartered in Georgia. Wesleyan College, the first college chartered to grant degrees to women, is located in Georgia.
- Georgia, according to the US Census Bureau, has a population of 9,919,945.
- 25.1% of Georgia residents are under 18 and 11.5% over 65.
- In Georgia 16.5% live below poverty level compared with a national average of 14.3%.
- The median household income is $49,736.
- The unemployment rate in Georgia is 8.3%
Georgia's Consumer Protection Laws
You can learn more about Georgia's consumer protection laws by visiting the Governor's Office of Consumer Protection website.
Gift Card Purchase Options
Before you purchase a gift card, here are some questions you should ask: Does this card have an expiration date? Is it for merchandise only or can it be used for merchandise and cash? Are there any service or inactivity fees? Is it redeemable online? Online only? Is there a location nearby where I can redeem it?
Gift Card Fraud
Gift card buyers beware! If the cards and their numbers are easily accessible, criminals will record the numbers and put them back. Then they will call to check balance. Once there is a balance they will go on an online shopping spree. One way to prevent this is to purchase only cards in secure packaging the PIN numbers hidden. If you can read it in the store, so can anyone else.