The Consumer Protection Act and its attendant regulation provide for rules that specifically govern rewards programs, but some programs are exempt from these rules.

These are programs that allow you to redeem your exchange units to obtain, free of charge or at a reduced price:

  • only goods or services valued at $50 dollars or less each; or
  • a single item or service (or a single combination of goods and services), determined at the time the agreement is entered into.


As part of these programs, the exchange units that you have already received may no longer be redeemable as of a specific date or after an established period.

Examples of programs where exchange units can expire

  • A card, on which you apply a sticker when you purchase a cup of coffee, entitles you to a free regular cup of coffee when the card has 10 stickers. The card may no longer be valid after the date indicated on it.
  • A card, that you have punched each time you visit a restaurant, entitles to you a $10 rebate on a meal valued at $17 or less after 10 visits. You may no longer be able to use the card 12 months after your first visit.
  • A stamp is given to you at the grocery store for every $20 of purchases made. The only possible reward is a set of 6 wine glasses in exchange for 100 stamps. The program could end on March 31.
  • A merchant offers you a free outdoor furniture set for $5,000 worth of purchases in his or her store in one year. The promotion could expire at the end of that year.

Last update : May 3, 2021

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The information contained on this page is presented in simple terms to make it easier to understand. It does not replace the texts of the laws and regulations.