Instructions for Schedule D: Income - Gifts
FPPC Form 700 (2014/2015)
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Instructions - Page 15
A gift is anything of value for which you have not provided equal or greater consideration to the donor. A gift is reportable if its fair market value is $50 or more. In addition, multiple gifts totaling $50 or more received during the reporting period from a single source must be reported.
It is the acceptance of a gift, not the ultimate use to which it is put, that imposes your reporting obligation. Except as noted below, you must report a gift even if you never used it or if you gave it away to another person.
If the exact amount of a gift is unknown, you must make a good faith estimate of the item's fair market value. Listing the value of a gift as "over $50" or "value unknown" is not adequate disclosure. In addition, if you received a gift through an intermediary, you must disclose the name, address, and business activity of both the donor and the intermediary. You may indicate an intermediary either in the "source" field after the name or in the "comments" section at the bottom of Schedule D.
Commonly reportable gifts include:
- Tickets/passes to sporting or entertainment events
- Tickets/passes to amusement parks
- Parking passes not used for official agency business
- Food, beverages, and accommodations, including those provided in direct connection with your attendance at a convention, conference, meeting, social event, meal, or like gathering
- Rebates/discounts not made in the regular course of business to members of the public without regard to official status
- Wedding gifts (See Reference Pamphlet, page 16)
- An honorarium received prior to assuming office (You may report an honorarium as income on Schedule C, rather than as a gift on Schedule D, if you provided services of equal or greater value than the payment received. See Reference Pamphlet, page 10, regarding your ability to receive future honoraria.)
- Transportation and lodging (See Schedule E.)
- Forgiveness of a loan received by you
You are not required to disclose:
- Gifts that were not used and that, within 30 days after receipt, were returned to the donor or delivered to a charitable organization or government agency without being claimed by you as a charitable contribution for tax purposes
- Gifts from your spouse or registered domestic partner, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, brother, sister, and certain other famly members (See Regulation 18942 for a complete list.). The exception does not apply if the donor was acting as an agent or intermediary for a reportable source who was the true donor.
- Gifts of similar value exchanged between you and an individual, other than a lobbyist registered to lobby your state agency, on holidays, birthdays, or similar occasions
- Gifts of informational material provided to assist you in the performance of your official duties (e.g., books, pamphlets, reports, calendars, periodicals, or educational seminars)
- A monetary bequest or inheritance (However, inherited investments or real property may be reportable on other schedules.)
- Personalized plaques or trophies with an individual value of less than $250
- Campaign contributions
- Up to two tickets, for your own use, to attend a fundraiser for a campaign committee or candidate, or to a fundraiser for an organization exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The ticket must be received from the organization or committee holding the fundraiser.
- Gifts given to members of your immediate family if the source has an established relationship with the family member and there is no evidence to suggest the donor had a purpose to influence you. (See Regulation 18943.)
- Free admission, food, and nominal items (such as a pen, pencil, mouse pad, note pad or similar item) available to all attendees, at the event at which the official makes a speech (as defined in Regulation 18950(b)(2)), so long as the admission is provided by the person who organizes the event.
- Any other payment not identified above, that would otherwise meet the definition of gift, where the payment is made by an individual who is not a lobbyist registered to lobby the official's state agency, where it is clear that the gift was made because of an existing personal or business relationship unrelated to the official's position and there is no evidence whatsoever at the time the gift is made to suggest the donor had a purpose to influence you.
To Complete Schedule D:
- Disclose the full name (not an acronym), address, and, if a business entity, the business activity of the source.
- Provide the date (month, day, and year) of receipt, and disclose the fair market value and description of the gift.
- Gifts from a single source are subject to a $440 limit during 2014. See Reference Pamphlet, page 10.
- Code filers – you only need to report gifts from reportable sources.
Gift Tracking Mobile Application
FPPC has created a gift tracking app for mobile devices that helps filers track gifts and provides a quick and easy way to upload the information to the Form 700. Visit FPPC's website to download the app.
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