Know the rules on holiday gifts

Can CU staff accept gifts from members?

Your credit union’s offices soon (if they aren’t already) will be full of cards, chocolates, cookies, fruitcakes, and maybe tickets to the “concert of the year.” Can you accept these? Do you know when you might need to say “no thank you”?

Now is a good time to review your credit union’s Bank Bribery Act policy. The act applies to all credit unions with accounts insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund.

The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) issued Interpretive Ruling and Policy Statement (IRPS) No. 87 in 1987 to provide federally insured credit unions with Bank Bribery Act guidelines. IRPS 87-1 gives credit unions some background on the act and recommends procedures to ensure compliance.

Specifically, the act states it’s a felony for any officer, director, employee, or agent to solicit or agree to accept anything of value in connection with a business transaction.

There are situations when it might be appropriate for a credit union employee to receive a business-related gift. Your credit union’s policies should address specific examples. Make sure you have a clear understanding of the guidelines.

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