Gifts to Non-Employees

Moderately-priced gifts made on behalf of the University to non-employees, students, or outside organizations are allowed when the gift benefits the University, is in furtherance of a University business purpose, and is clearly necessary to the University's fulfillment of its role as a good community citizen. The business reason for making the gift or the nature of the business benefit the University derives or expects to derive must be documented in writing. In most cases, the promotion of goodwill in the University community is an acceptable business purpose. The cost of such gifts must be reasonable in relation to the actual or expected benefits.

Allowable Gifts
  • Promotional items, i.e., gifts of tangible personal property that bears the logo of the University, such as a T-shirt, cap, or mug; $75 per individual limit
  • Appreciation, recognition or incentive; under $600 per individual limit
  • Sympathy Gift, e.g., flowers; $200 limit per individual limit

Examples of individuals and organizations that may be presented with a gift

  • Visiting dignitary or scholar to express appreciation (e.g. a distinguished lecturer)
  • An elected or appointed official to express appreciation or to promote goodwill
  • Donor or potential donor to acknowledge a contribution, to recognize service, to promote the University's programs, or to promote goodwill
  • Volunteer, including a University retiree to acknowledge the contribution of time or other resources or for participation a University-sponsored activity
  • Student to recognize a meritorious academic achievement
  • Student or volunteer for participation in a research study, completion of a survey or questionnaire, or for participation in another University-sponsored event
  • Civic or cultural organization or a member of the local community to promote goodwill
  • Client to promote good customer relations
Purchasing and Payment Methods
Reimbursement Procedures
  • Purchases may be reimbursed through MyExpense, if they cannot be purchased through BearBuy or a P-Card (campus departments).
  • The expense report should be submitted within 45 calendar days after the last purchase date. Payments of reimbursement requests submitted after 60 calendar days will be reported as taxable income, read more about late expense reports.
  • Include documentation that has a description of the gift and a receipt, the amount of the charge, the transaction date, and showing payment.
  • University policy requires that the business purpose for making a gift be documented. To establish the existence of a business relationship, include the name, title, and occupation of the gift recipient(s) must be included with the request for payment or reimbursement. For research participants/subjects, departments are required to keep records of the payee, including the person’s name.
Related Policy


Last Updated: September 2022