Depending on the situation and the value of the gifts, some gifts given by employers to employees may be subject to taxation in Singapore. Gifts given in conjunction with public holidays, for the employee’s birthday or wedding, or for the birth of the employee’s child are not taxable unless their value is deemed to be substantial and if the gifts are generally available to all staff.
Singaporean tax laws define a “substantial” gift as any gift with a value that exceeds S$200. This cap is an increase from that prior to the 2008 year of assessment (YA 2008), when the exemption threshold was S$100. Should the value of any gift exceed S$200, its full value is taxable. This rule applies to both cash gifts and non-cash gifts alike.
The threshold of S$200 applies to each individual gift. For example, if an employee were to receive four gifts with values of S$50, S$180, S$120, and S$70 respectively, none of the gifts would be taxable. However, if an employee were to receive one gift with a value of S$242, then the entire value of the gift would be taxable.
Gifts given in conjunction with bereavement are not treated the same way as other types of gifts are. Such gifts are never taxable, even if their value exceeds S$200.