I'm having the same problem with HOME DEPOT store merchandise credit as the other person on here. Funny part of it is that I got about 10 different stories from 10 different people. NOBODY knows what they're talking about. It wasn't until my last call to that 1-800 number on my receipt that the lady finally put it into perspective for me.
Just like the other guy on here, I made a return of an item that wasn't on the original receipt (first "ding"). They gave me store credit. I spent it, then tried to return the item a couple months later (secong "ding"). Their computer wouldn't allow the return. I spent another portion of the merchandise credit on several small items about a month later, including using my credit card for part of it. Tried to return some of the items about two weeks later. They again refused the return because of the usage of the store credit. Mind you, the amount of the refund could have easily been put back on the credit card (was less than I charged on it to begin with), but because it had even a small amount of store credit attached to the receipt, their computers wouldn't allow ANY kind of a refund off that receipt.
As far as I'm concerned, they stole money from me. There wasn't any reason why they couldn't have issued me credit back to my credit card. I paid over $60 worth of the bill on my card, and the return was less than $50 worth of merchandise. For the fact that $12 of the purchase was on store credit, they refused the entire return.
Basically, if you're having trouble getting a refund after spending in-store merchandise credit, you need to stop trying to make the return for at least 90 days, then try to make the return WITHOUT your receipt. You will have to accept credit for the entire amount, even if the original receipt was paid with credit card or cash in addition to store credit. The woman at that 1-800 number on my receipt then told me to make sure to use the store credit only for items that would NOT be returned, otherwise I would have the same problem again.
After all this crap, personally, I wouldn't want to ever enter one of their stores ever again, but because I'm going to be stuck with receiving even MORE store credit on a credit card receipted return (which should be illegal for them to force that), then I have no choice but to spend the entire amount of that purchase back in the store.
The lady at the 1-800 number that I called told me in no uncertain terms that even if my credit card payment portion was $700.00, and I tried to return just $5.00 worth of items on that receipt, that I would be stuck with a $700.00 store credit eventually that I would be forced to respend in the store. She told me there is nothing they can do for me. They can't reverse the computer's decision or push any buttons from their end to get the refund to go through. They are merely there to computer control refunds of store credit purchases and tell customers why their return did not go through. THERE IS NOTHING MORE THEY CAN DO FOR YOU!!!
I hope nobody gets screwed on a high ticket purchase, therefore this warning to consumers. In the future, DO NOT GET/SPEND HOME DEPOT GIFT CARDS OR STORE CREDIT. Sell them to someone else- a contractor perhaps-- that doesn't return items purchased there.