Holidays are closing in, and so is the time to give gifts. Traditionally, officials also receive them, but sometimes gifts go beyond the legal framework. Let us tell you what you can give so as not to endanger officials.
Attention! Do not forget that the salaries of officials are paid not by the abstract “state,” but by us, that is, taxpayers.
We decided to update our guide on what can actually be given to officials, so as not to cross the law.
A gift is defined as money or other property, benefits, services, perks, intangible assets, which are provided/received for free or at a price which is below the minimum market level (the Law of Ukraine “On Corruption Prevention,” art. 1, part 1). This means that business gifts within the monetary limits set by law are possible, so the main thing is to be able to give them to officials without violating the law. Therefore, if you decide to present a souvenir, follow the instructions.
Price of the gift
It is advisable to give a one-time gift that does not exceed the subsistence minimum for able-bodied persons as of the day of acceptance of such a gift. That is, if we give a gift for the new year 2022, then its cost should not exceed UAH 2,481. And for 2021, the total number of gifts from one person should not exceed UAH 4,540, that is, two subsistence minimums as of January 1, 2021.
Please note: a business gift must comply with generally accepted notions of hospitality. Officials (or their relatives) are not allowed to receive gifts in connection with their performance of state or local government functions.
We have prepared options of gifts for you.
● Code of Ukraine on Administrative Offenses with illustrations — about UAH 250.
● Motivational scratch poster “100 Great Things” — about UAH 600.
● Scented candle — about UAH 400.
● Wooden puzzle “Sun” — about UAH 350.
● Running alarm clock on wheels — about UAH 450.
By the way, almost all of them are manufactured in Ukraine, so you will kill two birds with one stone supporting our entrepreneurs and not breaking the law when congratulating officials.
If you look at the respectable gifts of more traditional categories, you can buy:
● Chivas Regal 12-year-old blended Scotch whiskey (1 L) — about UAH 1,800.
● Box of sweets — from UAH 50.
● A bouquet or a New Year’s basket — from UAH 500.
You can also give coupons to foundations and organizations. This will be a great gift for people who consider it necessary to support initiatives that sometimes solve crucial social (and not only) problems.
There is another option for the most creative: your attention and appreciation are priceless. Officials will definitely appreciate Facebook posts, a simple postcard, or a personal greeting.
Who gives a gift?
Under the Law of Ukraine “On Corruption Prevention,” close family members include husband, wife, father, mother, stepfather, stepmother, son, daughter, stepson, stepdaughter, brother, sister, first cousin, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, nephew, niece, uncle, aunt, grandmother, grandfather, great-grandfather, great-grandmother, grandson, granddaughter, great-grandson, great-granddaughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, mother-in-law, father-in-law, parents of the son-in-law or daughter-in-law, foster parents or children, caretakers and persons being taken care of, as well as family members:
a) a person who is married to the official and children of the official under the age of 18 regardless of cohabitation;
b) any persons living together in the same household, with mutual rights and obligations in relation to the entity (excluding persons whose mutual rights and obligations are not of family nature), including persons who live together but are not married;
Please note: business gifts can NOT be received from subordinates!
Form of the gift
A gift in the form of public discounts on goods, services, public winnings, prizes, awards, bonuses are not subject to restriction.
What penalties are there for non-compliance with the above rules?
Officials receive an administrative fine of UAH 1,700 to UAH 3,400 with confiscation of the gift. If this action is committed repeatedly during the year, the official will pay a fine of UAH 3,400 to UAH 6,800 with confiscation of the gift (donation) and deprivation of the right to hold certain positions or engage in certain activities for a period of one year.
Officials should remember:
1) Receiving any gift should not affect the objectivity or impartiality of the person’s decision-making or incite them to commit a wrongdoing;
2) In addition, decisions made by an official in favor of the person from whom the official or their relatives received a gift are considered to have been made in a conflict of interest, and these decisions are subject to a provision of article 67 of the Law of Ukraine “On Corruption Prevention”; i.e., such a decision may be ruled invalid.
3) A gift cannot be demanded, asked for, or received through other persons under certain conditions.
Keep the guide and share it with your friends to know how to act when you want to give presents to officials!