From today, a gift voucher bought in the Republic of Ireland, cannot have an expiry date less than five years from the date it was purchased.
In order to comply with the new legislation, the Consumer Protection (Gift Vouchers) Act 2019, which was introduced on the 02 December, retailers must provide a record of the expiry date to their customers in writing for example, either on paper or by email, if there is no expiry date then it should be stated.
The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has published guidance to help businesses understand the new legislation and assess how the new rules may impact on their current gift vouchers policy.
According to the CCPC publication, other changes that retailers must adhere to include: You cannot limit the amount of vouchers used in a single transaction; You cannot refuse to accept gift vouchers that are not in the user’s name and from now on traders cannot charge a fee for changing or amending the name on a gift voucher.
"This legislation gives consumers valuable additional protections and in the run up to Christmas it will be of considerable benefit to anyone who buys or receives a gift voucher," Isolde Goggin, Chairperson of the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission said.
"Businesses, whether they are a restaurant, hotel, service provider or retailer, now need to take action and check that they are compliant with the law."
Gift vouchers that were sold before the new legislation came into effect yesterday do not have to comply with the new requirements, the group said.
© 2019 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Donna Ahern. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.