Gift card escheat bill clears Assembly

TRENTON – The Assembly passed the gift card escheat bill, S1928/A3045, by a vote of 77-1. The bill cleared the Senate earlier in the day.

It removes unspent gift card funds from being included in the escheat law. 

The bill addresses a situation in which the state and gift card issuers have been in disputes over which entity gets to lay claim to unspent funds.

The state wanted control as did the card issuer, and the problem led to American Express saying it would discontinue selling gift cards in New Jersey.

A main sticking point is the state mandates that gift card issuers collect and store ZIP codes of purchasers.

The N.J. Retail Merchants Association – originally in support of this bill – opposed it eventually because the ZIP code provision was not removed.