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Proceed with caution

Reminder offered on employee gift exchanges

Woman receiving wrapped gifts
Remember the rules for giving and receiving gifts in USPS workplaces.

The Postal Service is reminding employees to proceed with caution when exchanging gifts.

Generally, an employee should not give a gift to a manager or higher-paid colleague. Likewise, a gift should not be accepted from a subordinate or lower-paid employee.

There are exceptions. For example, a non-cash gift worth $10 or less to a manager on birthdays, holidays or similar occasions is OK.

Another exception is a gift to a manager on a special occasion, such as a marriage, birth, adoption, retirement or resignation. This gift could be cash; there is no monetary limit on the gift, but the gift must be customary to the occasion.

These rules help to avoid complaints of favoritism or harassment while creating cohesive, productive workplaces.

The Ethics Blue page has additional guidance, including a presentation on holiday gift exchanges. If you have questions, email the Ethics Office at

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