NATIONAL — December is often a time for giving. But unfortunately, for some, it’s become a time for taking.

If you'll remember, at the end of Dr. Seuss's "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" the Grinch returns the toys he's stolen to the children of Whoville. But recent posts to social media have left some wondering if a few parents can actually be worse than the Grinch.

According to recent posts, some people are claiming to have seen parents returning toys they’ve gotten from charities for their children to department stores for store credit.

Now, whether this is actually happening or these are just posts fabricated to garner shares on the internet, there is a simple solution; remove the barcode before you donate a toy.

Many charities, understandably, only accept new toys. This is for a mixture of safety and liability reasons.

But a toy is still new, even if you’ve cut the barcode off the box.

Without a barcode, a toy is almost always unreturnable.

Some posts have urged donors to “mark through” the barcode with a permanent marker.

At the very least, this will indicate to the cashier that something may be up, but it won’t necessarily stop them from returning it if it still scans.

The best solution seems to be carefully using scissors or a box cutter to simply cut the barcode off.

For items that the barcode is printed directly on it, like balls, marking through is the best solution.

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