Prepaid cards: lots of flavors, not all delicious
Some consumers use prepaid cards like cash?others, in place of a bank account.
AUTHORS: Greene, Claire
Gift card value when issuers go bankrupt
What value does a prepaid gift card retain when the company where it can be spent files for bankruptcy? A legal intern looks at the law and recent cases and offers advice to consumers.
AUTHORS: Frederick, Cristin
Stored value cards: costly private substitutes for government currency
AUTHORS: Lacker, Jeffrey M.
Stored-value cards: a card for every reason
This article discusses the various uses of stored-value cards and the different degrees of their use and acceptance four years after their introduction.
AUTHORS: Bradford, Terri
Card carrying consumers: stored-value cards go beyond the mall
AUTHORS: Steeves, Brye
Pursuing a safe, secure and reliable payments system: what can history tell us (President's message)
AUTHORS: Hoenig, Thomas M.
Prepaid cards: how do they function? how are they regulated?
This conference, sponsored by the Payment Cards Center, brought together prepaid card industry leaders and regulators to discuss how various prepaid-card systems work and the ways in which different state and federal laws can affect them. The conference featured sessions on bank- and merchant-issued gift cards, payroll cards, and flexible spending account cards. It also featured presentations by experts on Regulation E, the Federal Deposit Insurance Act, state money transmitter laws, and state abandoned property laws.
AUTHORS: Furletti, Mark
Prepaid card markets and regulation
Prepaid cards, also commonly referred to as stored-value cards, are typically credit card-sized pieces of plastic that contain or represent an amount of pre-loaded value. They include a wide range of payment products, such as gift cards, payroll cards, teen cards, and travel cards. Despite significant product innovations, it is unclear whether and how existing federal and state laws that apply to other financial products (e.g., checks, credit cards, deposit accounts) apply to the different varieties of prepaid cards. Overall, the law in this area is very much unsettled. In an effort to understand the legal and regulatory issues facing prepaid cards, the Center invited Judith Rinearson, chief counsel to American Express? electronic stored-value business, to present a workshop on the topic. This paper provides highlights from Rinearson?s presentation. It analyzes the different kinds of prepaid card products on the market and the federal and state laws that potentially apply to them.
AUTHORS: Furletti, Mark
The laws, regulations, and industry practices that protect consumers who use electronic payment systems: ACH E-checks & prepaid cards
This is the second in a series of three papers that examines the protections available to users of various electronic payment vehicles who fall victim to fraud, discover an error on their statement, or have a dispute with a merchant after making a purchase. Specifically, it examines the federal and state laws that protect consumers in the three situations described above as well as the relevant association, network, and bank policies that may apply. The protection information included in this paper is derived from a wide range of public and non-public sources, including federal and state statutes, issuer-consumer contracts, and interviews with scores of payments industry experts. This second paper focuses on two increasingly popular electronic payment methods: ACH electronic check applications (e-checks) and branded prepaid cards. The first paper in the series examined the two most widely used electronic payment vehicles: credit and debit cards. The third paper will discuss broader industry and policy implications of the authors? findings.
AUTHORS: Smith, Stephen; Furletti, Mark
The cost effectiveness of stored-value products for unbanked customers
On March 30, 2005, the Payment Cards Center hosted a workshop led by Sherrie L.W. Rhine and Sabrina Su of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York?s Office of Regional and Community Affairs to discuss the relevance of stored-value cards to ?unbanked? or underserved consumers. The authors framed the issue by first examining the characteristics of the unbanked before describing the particular card products that may be the most relevant for providing financial services to such consumers. While limitations remain, including an unsettled legal and regulatory landscape and the challenges associated with providing credit reporting and asset building features, the authors concluded that these products can offer a cost-effective means for unbanked customers to access financial services outside of a traditional banking relationship.
AUTHORS: McGrath, James C.