Girardi | Keese

Deactivated gift cards subject of consumer class action

Consumers occasionally find themselves frustrated because a big business makes a decision or handles a situation in a way that is harmful or costs them money. Whether you live in Los Angeles or any other part of the country, banding together with others in the same position in a class action lawsuit to change a policy or recover money lost.

Court information shows that Best Buy and Apple are defendants in this type of litigation. The suit alleges that iTunes gift cards were deactivated before customers redeemed them. The lead plaintiff asserts that there was no expiration date listed, nor did either of the businesses provide that information to the cardholder. The company that handled activation and deactivation of the cards is also as a named defendant.

Reportedly, the cards were purchased at Best Buy to be redeemed on iTunes. The complaint alleges that neither the retailer nor Apple gave the buyer a reason why or a scenario wherein the card would be deactivated after purchase. The lead plaintiff claims her cards were unusable less than a year after her daughter bought them.

As is common in consumer class actions, a settlement has been presented to the federal judge hearing the matter in California. She has tentatively approved both the suggested settlement and the certification of the consumer class. If final approval is effected at hearing, all U.S. residents who purchased the music gift cards between the specified dates, and then found they were deactivated without redemption within the relevant time period will become class members.

People often believe that ordinary citizens have no recourse against big corporations in the marketplace. With an experienced, knowledgeable approach to the legal remedies and options that are applicable to a given situation, action by a group of consumers can be successful.


Source: 
Courthouse News Service, "Settlement Preliminarily Approved in Apple & Best Buy Gift Card Class Action Heather Johnson" Heather Johnson, Apr. 22, 2014

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