By Elena Aben
A bill seeking to prohibit the imposition of expiry dates on gift checks, certificates, or cards has been filed in the Senate.
Senate Bill No. 1466, the “Gift Check Act of 2017,” sponsored by Sen. Juan Miguel F. Zubiri, aims to promote the general welfare of the consumers and protect their interest by ensuring that they are not deprived of the right to enjoy their hard-earned money.
In his sponsorship speech, Zubiri cited Administrative Order No. 10-04 of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), which sets guidelines on the issuance, use and redemption of gift checks, certificates or gift cards in accordance with Republic Act No. 7394 or the Consumer Act of the Philippines.
According to the senator, said department order prohibits all suppliers, issuers, distributors and sellers from issuing selling gift certificates/checks/cards with an expiry date, but exempts gift certificates/checks/cards that are distributed to consumers under awards, loyalty and promotional programs.
“Further, the Department Order allows that goods and services purchased with gift certificates/checks/cards be qualified in promotional sales activities, loyalty programs, warranties, return policies for cash purchases, and discounts for senior citizens or persons with disability,” said Zubiri, who chairman of the Senate committee on trade, commerce and entrepreneurship.
“This policy stems from the general idea that, since gift checks are bought with cash, and cash has no expiration date, then it should follow that the same value stored inside the instrument, be it a certificate/check/card, should likewise not expire,” he added
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