Decline to Accept a Gift • Example Letters, Plus Guides and Samples
A courteous, tactful letter acknowledging a gift can be an effective public relations tool even though you are not accepting it. Make your reason for not accepting it clear.
How to write this refusal letter:
- Thank the reader for his or her thoughtfulness or compliment him or her in some way.
- Give a brief reason for your refusal.
- End on a positive note.
Example Letter #1
I loved the beautiful plant you had delivered to my office. Unfortunately, I had to ask the delivery boy to return it, because we are not allowed to accept gifts from clients. Still, I sincerely appreciated the gesture and look forward to our continued association.
Example Letter #2
You must have read my mind. I have been admiring your beautiful fountain pen since we first met. To make it a gift to me was very thoughtful.
Sadly, I cannot accept your generosity because company policy prohibits employees from receiving gifts. But be assured that I will not forget your kind gesture.
Example Letter #3
I was very touched by your thoughtful offer to babysit my children during the vacation I had planned. Recently, however, I have had a change of heart and will no longer be taking the vacation. Nonetheless, I deeply appreciate your generosity and I hope to be able to repay it some day.
Example Letter #4
How kind of you to send me tickets to Saturday's ball game! Regretfully, I must decline the gift. Company policy does not allow management to accept gifts of greater than a $10.00 value. I hope you understand. But thank you for thinking of me.
Write Your Letter Step-by-Step
1 Thank the reader for his or her thoughtfulness or compliment him or her in some way.
Sample Sentences for Step 1
- I appreciate your thoughtfulness in sending me tickets for the playoff game.
- The vase that was delivered to my office yesterday is lovely. Thank you for thinking of me.
- How thoughtful of you to include me in your plans for a trip to Disneyland.
- It was very kind of you to leave the lovely gift on my desk. Thank you for your thoughtfulness.
- You have very good taste. The tie you left for me is really beautiful.
Sample Phrases for Step 1
- a wonderful way to say thank you
- appreciate your thoughtfulness in sending me
- appreciate your offer to
- couldn't have chosen a more beautiful arrangement of
- feel honored to be the recipient of such a magnificent
- how thoughtful of you to include me in
- how thoughtful you are in your choice of gifts
- is well suited to the decor and mood of the office
- recent gift of appreciation as a result of
- show that your taste in gifts is impeccable
- thank you for so thoughtful a gift
- thank you for the valuable
- thank you for thinking of me
- thank you for the lovely
- that was delivered to my office yesterday is lovely
- totally unexpected gift
- was very surprised to receive
- was a very kind gesture
- went out of your way to
- what exquisite taste you have in
- what a beautiful gift you had delivered to my office today
2 Give a brief reason for your refusal.
Sample Sentences for Step 2
- Unfortunately, company policy prohibits me from accepting gifts from clients, so I am returning the gift to you.
- Since Doe's discourages employees from accepting gifts from wholesalers, I did not accept delivery of the vase.
- However, I would feel uncomfortable accepting such an expensive gift from a student.
- Your generosity has touched me deeply, but I must return the gift because the directors have forbidden us to accept any gifts from customers while we are in Doe's employ.
- I wish I could accept the gift, but it would cause hard feelings among those with whom I must work every day.
Sample Phrases for Step 2
- although the figurine you sent me yesterday is beautiful
- am undeserving of such a show of gratitude
- a sincere regret because of its great beauty
- acceptance of gifts in this manner could compromise
- allow me to return it
- am sorry that I must return the
- am returning the gift to you
- because company policy prohibits me from accepting gifts from
- cannot accept such an exquisite
- cannot accept gifts from suppliers
- company policy discourages
- company policy must be followed
- great pains to maintain my image of impartiality
- has been returned, but not my appreciation of your thoughtfulness
- irreplaceable nature of the vase would leave me forever indebted
- it would be inappropriate to accept
- know that it was well meant
- long-standing policy is that
- must decline your offer
- no one company may be dealt with on an exclusive basis
- nonetheless, your kindness is appreciated
- policy not to accept expensive gifts from clients
- regret that I must return it
- regret, however, that it must be returned
- regrettably, the offer must be refused
- since Doe's discourages employees from accepting gifts from
- would feel uncomfortable accepting such an expensive gift from a
3 End on a positive note.
Sample Sentences for Step 3
- Thank you again for your kind thought.
- I do appreciate you thinking of me.
- I am sure you will understand. Your thoughtfulness is appreciated.
- Your good intentions will not be forgotten.
- My sincere thanks for your good thoughts.
Sample Phrases for Step 3
- am sure you understand
- appreciate your generosity
- come see me whenever it is convenient
- do appreciate your thinking of me
- it is with much gratitude that I thank you
- look forward to visiting with you in the future
- please accept my sincerest thanks
- please allow me to return it
- please accept my appreciation of your thoughtfulness
- thank you for your kind thoughtfulness
- thank you for thinking of me
- thank you again for your kind thought
- thank you so much for caring
- was nice of you to think of me
- wish you the very best
- your thoughtfulness is well received
- your generosity will not soon be forgotten
- your thoughtfulness is appreciated
- your kindness is appreciated