President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on December 19 signed into law Republic Act No. 10962, otherwise known as the “Gift Check Act of 2017,” prohibiting the issuance of gift checks that bear expiry dates, as well as the imposition of an expiry date on the stored value, credit, or balance of the gift check.
Refusing to honor the unused value, credit, or balance stored in the gift check is also considered unlawful.
RA No. 10962, which regulates the issuance, use, and redemption of gift checks, is pursuant to the government’s policy of safeguarding the interests of Filipino consumers and establishing proper standards of conduct for businesses in the country,
RA No. 10962 likewise protects consumers against deceptive, unfair, and unconscionable sales acts and practices. The new measure further seeks to promote “fair, honest, and equitable relations among parties in consumer transaction.”
“Towards this end, the State, through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), recognizes that a gift check represents value held in trust by the issuer thereof on behalf of its beneficiary or bearer and that consumers must not be unduly deprived of the value of their money,” RA No. 10962 read.
The law applies to all issuers of gift checks, gift certificates, or gift cards, may they be in the form of paper, card, code, or other device.
However, gift checks that are issued to consumers including, but not limited to, those under loyalty, rewards, or promotional programs, as determined by DTI, are not covered by the law. Coupons or vouchers — those which entitle holders to a discount off a particular good or which may be exchanged for a pre-identified good — are likewise not covered by RA 10962.
Meanwhile, President Duterte also signed Republic Act No. 10966, which declares December 8 of every year as a special nonworking holiday in the Philippines, in commemoration of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary.
President Duterte likewise enacted Republic Act. No. 10965, establishing a national science high school in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte, to be known as Rodolfo CG. Fariñas Jr. National Science High School. The Department of Education (DepEd) is hence tasked to appropriate the necessary funding for the school’s operation under its annual budget. ###PCO-Content