Gifts and Giftedness


A gift is an offering of assets or money to someone, usually without expecting anything in return. Many gifts are tax-free for both parties, but others may require payment of taxes. For example, a gift made after the annual or lifetime gift exemption may be taxable, and requires a gift tax form. However, most gifts are exempt from taxes if given to a family member or close friend.

To avoid violating ethics laws, gift recipients must adhere to a few simple rules. If the gift is tangible, it must be returned or compensated at the fair market value. If the gift is worth less than $100, it may be given away or donated to a charity. For non-tangible gifts, gift recipients can share them with other office members or donate them to a charitable organization. Similarly, gifts may be destroyed with the recipient’s consent.

Gifts received from foreign governments are also prohibited under the Emoluments Clause. These rules apply to federal employees on or off duty. They also apply to multinational organizations composed of government representatives. Federal employees’ spouses and dependent children are not allowed to accept gifts from foreign governments. However, they can accept gifts from employees earning less than them.

Believers with spiritual gifts are given specific skills and talents to help others encounter God. These skills can be used to further God’s kingdom. In a Christian community, people with spiritual gifts can help those who are weak or overwhelmed.