Tax treatment of gifts given to employees for festive occassions (e.g. New Year) and special occasions (e.g. birthday or wedding).

Tax Treatment of Gifts (Summary Table)


Taxable/ Not taxable 


Festive occasions such as Chinese New Year, Hari Raya, Deepavali and Christmas (cash/ non-cash)

The gifts (e.g. red packets during Chinese New Year) are not taxable if they are not substantial in value and are generally available to all staff.

As a guide, a gift not exceeding $200 is considered to be not substantial in value. If the gift exceeds the exemption threshold, the full value is taxable.

Prior to Year of Assessment (YA) 2008, the exemption threshold was $100.

See Applying the Exemption Threshold (below).



Special occasions e.g. celebration of SG50, birthdays, weddings and births of child (cash/ non-cash)



Bereavement - wreath, condolence tokens, etc.

Not taxable


Festive Occasions/Special occasions (Cash/Non-Cash)

Effective YA 2008, the exemption threshold for cash and non-cash gifts relating to festive and special occasions has been increased from $100 to $200.

If a gift exceeds the exemption threshold, the full value of the gift is taxable. For example, if the baby gift set is worth $250, the taxable value is $250.

The threshold of $200 is applicable per occasion.

Applying the Exemption Threshold

For example, an employee is given a cash gift of $200 on his wedding, a birthday gift of $50 and a Christmas gift of $80 in the same year.

All gifts are not taxable as the value of each gift does not exceed $200. The birthday gift given to an employee every year is also not taxable if each gift does not exceed $200.


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