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It's illegal in Massachusetts (where OP is from) as of 2002(?) for gift cards to deplete over time. I might have the date wrong, however, as I was just a kid when that law took effect. If you read the fine print it'll say something like "it depletes by X for ever Y amount of time you dont use it except where prohibited by law." However, if you then go out of state, and use that card, it's now officially able to deplete. Not that it's relevent in OP's case, since I would guess they're still in MA.
If that happened you obviously don't live in MA, or that happend before 2002(ish). However what I stated is the current law in Massachusetts, and OP is from Massachusetts. Therefore OP's gift card was equal to whatever it was supposed to be, regardless of how long they had it.
Actually, boatkicker. That's not true. In Massachusetts, "A gift certificate sold or offered to be sold shall be valid for not less than 7 years after its date of issuance. Massachusetts General Laws 200A §5D. A gift certificate without an expiration date will not expire." I know that says gift certificate, but it also goes on to say: "Gift Cards – Gift cards are covered under the definition of “gift certificate”. Massachusetts General Laws 255D §1" There is no law stating that it can "never" deplete. Also, to the OP, by MA law you may still be able to get your $400 back. "In some, but not all cases, you may be able to receive some reimbursement for the value of the gift certificate. If the retailer files for the protection of the bankruptcy court, you should file a document called a “proof of claim” with the court. Include whatever information you have about the value of the certificate, and a photocopy of the certificate or gift card. Bankruptcy allows for the payment of claims depending on assets available. "
Sell it to a random stranger at a reduced price, problem solved.
Ahahaha x) This is why people should give gift cards from huge businesses that aren't likely to go out of business anytime soon. Like Walmart or Starbucks.
Or not give gift cards at all. A coworker gave me a Starbucks gift card a few years ago. I'm a big coffee drinker, but don't go to Starbucks unless I'm not able to make my own (on vacation or something). The $20 gift card only had like $7 on it the first time I used it because Starbucks cards lose value every month after a year or something like that. Give money if you don't know what to get - gift cards suck.
They don't suck. I prefer giving gift cards over money, because it's essentially the same thing, except by picking out a gift card to a certain place, it shows that you put more thought into it than just shoving money in a card and giving it to someone. Like, my brother gives me Starbucks and iTunes gift cards for presents, and it's cool that he took note of things I like. Giving money is just... Blehh. Reserve money giving for high school graduations and bar mitzvahs, stuff like that. The rule where gift cards run out of credit after x amount of time is still really retarded, but if you know you won't use a gift card anytime soon, regift it.