5.2 Expense Reimbursement Procedure

5.2.1 It is the policy of the University that employees are reimbursed the actual cost of expenses incurred wholly, exclusively and necessarily in the performance of the duties of their employment. Employees are expected both to minimise costs without impairing the efficiency of the University and to avoid any unnecessary cost to the University. In general, reimbursement will be made only on the production of original receipts or invoices; credit card vouchers must be supported by the original itemised bill or receipt. Round sum allowances/expenses will not be accepted.

5.2.2 Expenses incurred on behalf of the University are to be recorded in detail on form EC1, issued by the Finance Office (and available on the Finance Office webpage, irrespective of the source of funding. Expense claims must be submitted to the Finance Office as soon as possible and no later than three months after the date on which the expense was incurred. All claims must be supported by receipts wherever the supplier can reasonably be expected to provide a receipt.

5.2.3 The expense claim form EC1 should be used only for incidental expenses, normally incurred when travelling on University business. They should not be used for the purchase of equipment or supplies for academic activities and wherever possible goods and services should be ordered using a University Purchase Order.

5.2.4 If a payment is made in advance of an event and that event is subsequently cancelled any associated refunds must be paid back to the University.

5.2.5 Where expenses are incurred in foreign currencies, the amounts so incurred should be shown, in the currency in question, on form EC1. However, reimbursement will be made in £ Sterling.

5.2.6 The declaration on form EC1 must be signed by the claimant and the form must be authorised under the procedures described below under "Authorisation of Expense Claims". The completed forms must be sent to the Finance Office together with all supporting documentation (receipts, etc), which will be retained centrally for a minimum of six years.

5.2.7 Incomplete claims will not be processed but returned to the claimant signatory with an explanation as to why it cannot be processed. Incorrect claims will be either amended and a revised amount paid, or returned to the claimant signatory with an explanation as to why it cannot be processed. This may lead to a delay in payment. The claim should be fully completed and returned to the Finance Office for processing. Prior to sending a claim to Finance it is important to check that it is fully completed.

5.2.8 If receipts related to expenses incurred have been lost, the member of staff should contact the Accounts Payable Section of the Finance Office for advice and the expense claim form must be clearly marked that the receipts have been lost.

5.2.9 Petty Cash advances may be made by the Director of Finance to a Head of Department or to an authorised member of staff. Advances are intended only for urgent or minor day-to-day expenses of the Department. Petty Cash should not be used for making payments to suppliers with whom the University has credit account facilities. Vouchers should be obtained for Petty Cash disbursements wherever possible and all vouchers should be kept and forwarded to the Cashier's Office when claiming reimbursement at agreed times. The Petty Cash Accounts should be records only of expenditure. In no circumstances should cash received be paid into these accounts.

5.2.10 All expenses claims must be verified for accuracy and authorised by a person other than the claimant. This is a basic internal control procedure and, in providing an independent check, acts to protect the interests of the claimant against any possible allegation of irregularity. The following hierarchy of authorisation is to be used:

Claimant
Authoriser
Departmental / Divisional Staff Head of Department / Division or alternative signatory on the departmental codes
Head of Department
Appropriate PVC / Head of College
Head of Division
Registrar and Secretary
Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Registrar and Secretary President and Vice-Chancellor
President and Vice-Chancellor Chairman of Council or if he is not available, the Pro-Chancellor, or if neither are available, the Treasurer, or failing all three the Chairman of the Audit Committee
Treasurer   President and Vice-Chancellor
Chairman of Council Treasurer, or in his absence the Pro-Chancellor

 5.2.11 It is possible for authority to be delegated provided that, for any individual claim, the authoriser is both different from the claimant and is in a position of managerial superiority to the claimant. For the avoidance of doubt, Heads of Department may not delegate authority to sign expense claims to a member of the staff in grades 1-5. The same authorisation principles apply to invoices for travel and subsistence (e.g. invoices from travel agents).

 

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