Gift Vouchers in NSW
Gift Vouchers. The NSW Government has introduced a mandatory minimum expiry period of 3 years for Gift Cards and Gift Vouchers sold to consumers in NSW, as well as a ban on post-purchase administration fees, starting 31st March 2018.
The new requirements have been made by amendment to the Fair Trading Act 1987. The changes aim to strike a fairer economic balance for consumers and businesses in the gift card market. The reforms give consumers access to the full value of their gift cards over a reasonable period while maintaining a workable business model for traders.
The reforms do not apply to gift cards and vouchers purchased by consumers before 31st March 2018. The terms and conditions in place at the date of purchase of those cards will continue to apply.
The new law sets a mandatory minimum expiry period of 3 years for most gift card products. The period begins from the date of issue which is the date a gift card or voucher is sold to a consumer. Businesses can choose to apply for an expiry period longer than 3 years and no maximum expiry period applies.
Once the gift card or voucher has been issued, there is a ban on charging any post-purchase fee associated with redeeming the card or voucher that would reduce its value. Examples of post-purchase fees include; activation fees, account keeping fees, balance enquiry fees, telephone enquiry fees and fees applied when a card is inactive or not being used.
There are fees that a business may charge as part of a sale that is the cost of processing a payment. These fees apply regardless of the method of payment, such as overseas transaction fees, booking fees or payment surcharge fees. These are not considered post-purchase fees and are not captured by the ban.
For further information do refer to the NSW Government’s fact sheet, the link is included here.