Are rebates a racket? Many products advertise rebates, but the promises aren’t always what they seem. Only later, with the fine print in hand, does the purchaser find the rebate may not arrive for several months, or the rebate was less than advertised.

In Sunday Forum, columnist Paul Gullixson recounts his own experience and what he has learned about the rebate business.

Incidentally, you may have noticed the asterisk that advertised the rebate offered with this post. Here’s what appears at the bottom of the 43rd page, in very small type.

* This rebate good on any day that doesn’t end in ‘y.’

-Pete Golis