(Closed) Proper Etiquette For Receiving Too Large A Gift?

posted 9 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 17
Member
899 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

@meowkers, I understand the setiment behind your suggestion, but if you send a thank you note, then he is expecting you to cash the check. If you leave it outstanding, he might get confused when managing his money if the future.  

Are you certain he is not well off? Maybe he planned and wanted to give you that gift, however generous. 

Could you talk with someone else that knows him (maybe in your family) that knows him a bit better? Maybe they have some insight?

You could always call him to thank him for such a generous gift and see what he says. You might be able to tell if he was unsure how much to give. 

Post # 17
Member
899 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

You should be able to tell how much he wrote the check for because you have to write out the words. 

I guess I would just cash the check, but then, like others have suggested, get him a nice present or take him out to a fancy dinner. 

 

Post # 18
Member
14492 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

I would just send it back.  Write the best thank you letter possible with it and send regrets.  Maybe something along the lines of:

“Dear Soandso,

We missed your company very much at our wedding and completely understand that you could not be there to celebrate with us.  We recieved your generous gift and it is more than appreciated, it brings us so much joy that you think so much of us to show us such generosity.  While we appreciate the enormous generosity, in these economic times, we just cannot accept.  It would bring us such pleasure if you would invest this into a visit with us in the future, as your company is make our lives truely rich.  Until we meet again…

Your humbled friend,”

Post # 19
Member
7581 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

Etiquette says returning/not accepting the gift is insulting.

Post # 21
Member
542 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

View original reply
@andielovesj: Agreed.

 

Cash it and send a thank you, anything else is rude.

Post # 22
Member
4753 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

View original reply
@mwg569: in that case, he’s very concious of his decision to gift you that, just cash it and send him a very kind thank you card and leave it at that.

 

He likely just wants to know that the gift was well recived and his generosity was appriciated.

Post # 23
Member
1412 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

It seems unlikely that the check was actually supposed to be for $100. Yes, I could see inadvertently adding another zero, but it would be pretty difficult to write out “One thousand and no/100” when you meant to write “One hundred…” That’s why there’s a line on a check where you write out the amount in letters!

Post # 25
Member
2693 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2008

View original reply
@mwg569: It would totally make me uncomfortable to see that’s what he had written.  I would feel SUCH intense guilt, but also would feel terrible by keeping him in limbo and not cashing his check.  If all of these signs point to this amount being extravagant, I would seriously, SERIOUSLY wonder if he had mis-wrote the check for an amount he couldn’t give (although I know that’s a stretch, seeing as though people have to write the amount in numerics AND spell it out in writing).  Is he a family member or friend of your parents?  Maybe you could ask your parents their opinions on whether or not the thought this was appropriate/extravagant/a mistake?

Post # 27
Member
15132 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

Cash it and say thank you.  They choose to gift if to you, its not your place to determine if they can or cannot afford it.

Post # 28
Member
602 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I had a similar experience with my in-laws.  My husbands dad just had a major health concern and forced early retirement and I know it was a terrible year for them.  They gave us a seriously huge amount of money as an engagement gift / to put toward the wedding.  Luckily it was my husbands parents so he dealt with the awkward part…. like are you sure you didn’t put too many zeroes on there?  In the end we cashed it because his family was persistent.  I guess we were “lucky” in that they were family vs. a friend. 

Post # 29
Member
6659 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2010

Etiquette actually states that you thank him gracefully and cash the check, because like PP have said, it would be insulting to insinuate that he could not afford such a large gift.

A sneaky and polite way to give him an out would be to call and make sure that the amount is correct, that he meant to write $1,000 instead of $100. Say it in a way that you were assuming he meant $100 since that is what most other guests gave and when he insists that $1K is correct act shocked and flattered. “Oh but that’s ridiculously generous, how can we ever thank you?” “What a wondeful surprise and a great way to start off our marriage, we are truly blessed to have friends like you.”

That way if he wrote out the check in the heat of the moment and regretted it later, now he has a chance to back out. But if he says it’s correct, then you are $1K richer!

Post # 30
Member
263 posts
Helper bee

Cash it, thank him profusely, then send him an anonymous gift certificate to the grocery store, Amazon, etc., or invest it into his own business anonymously.

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