The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf International Coffee & Tea, LLC Coffee Bean stole the money from my family’s gift cards Los Angeles CA

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My family and I have several Coffee Bean gift cards.  Two of my family members wanted to give their money to me because they know I (used to) like Coffee Bean.  I emailed customer service to see if they could be combined into one card.  Instead of honoring that request, they said that I had improperly accessed other people’s (my family’s) accounts.  They shut down those accounts and zeroed out the gift card balances.  They confiscated about $59 of gift card money from us.

I believe it is illegal for them to do this (California law states that the value on a gift card belongs to the beneficiary, not to the issuer), but it’s just me against them.  After weeks of emails with customer service, they will only return the money if we provide receipts for the gift cards, which we don’t have because most of the cards were gifts.

I strongly advise avoiding Coffee Bean–but especially their gift cards.  You can expect them to accuse you of fraud, steal your money, and demand to see a receipt to use a gift card.