TUC Sponsored Programs


Objective of the Procedure

This procedure is intended to define the handling of advances within The University Corporation (TUC). This policy applies to all faculty, staff, and students working on or participating in a sponsored program. 

Definition of Advance

Advances are provided to individuals in the following circumstances:

      - Cash on hand for a specific event or purpose, such as incentives for participants in a research study, or for projected

        program costs.

      - Advances connected to travel-related expenses such as airline tickets, meals, lodging, rental cars, etc.

      - Advances for conference registration fees, trade shows, seminars and training courses.

All advance requests must include a detailed justification, including budget
available and authorized signatures.

Request for Advance

TUC asks all individuals to use their TUC purchase cards or personal credit cards when possible to pay for travel expenses in lieu of requesting advances. TUC's practice is to reimburse travel expenses as quickly as possible with submission of required documentation. Advances should not be less than $100.

When an advance is needed, individuals may request the advance via a completed Advance Request Form with the proper authorization. The signature of the person receiving the advance must be on the Advance Request Form. The Advance Request Form must be submitted to TUC at least 5 business days before the advance is needed. The amount of the requested advance cannot exceed 75% of the expected total expenditure for employees and Principal Investigators. Student expenses are eligible for advances up to 100% of the expected expenditure amount.

The advance must be refunded immediately when a trip is cancelled or postponed.

Proof of Expenditures/Clearing of Advance

Unless otherwise approved in writing at the time the advance request is made, individuals must clear advances within 30 days of the completion of their travel or occurrence of the actual expenditures. For advances for participant incentives, TUC Financial Services will review the outstanding advances every semester until the advance is cleared. Individuals must submit an expense report or Principal Investigators must submit a log and reconciliation of monies disbursed. The log must include the dates of study participation on which incentives were provided, and as much detail on individual subject records (e.g., names, email addresses, study IDs, or other records) as is permissible under the approved IRB protocol. All original receipts, including those receipts pertaining to the advance amount, must be attached to the expense claim form. The expense claim form or reconciliation log will be matched with the travel advance request and an amount due to or from the employee/PI will be calculated.

Extensions beyond the 30 day clearance period will typically not be granted except in cases where clearing the advance in that time frame presents an obvious hardship (for example, advance for an extended travel period, or for research incentives when subject recruitment/participation may occur over the course of a year). In all cases, the PI or employee requesting the advance must provide an estimate of when TUC can reasonably expect the advance to be cleared.

Limitations and Recovery

Limitations on Advances Only one advance per person per expenditure type may be outstanding at any given time. Uncleared advances will result in further requests for advances being denied.

Recovery In the event an employee does not submit an expense report within 90 days from when the trip or activity is expected to be completed, TUC will initiate proceedings for the recovery of the outstanding advance.

The employee's written permission must be obtained before an outstanding advance can be deducted from wages or from any other amounts due the employee. If the employee's consent cannot be obtained, TUC may recover the debt through a collection agency.


Responsibilities of the Principal Investigator/Project Director (PD) PIs/PDs are responsible for communicating the procedure for advances to all employees seeking an advance and for ensuring compliance.

It is the responsibility of the PI/PD to ensure that employees attend the seminars, conferences, tradeshows and training for which they received an advance.

The PI/PD must ensure that individual advances are cleared with TUC within 30 days of the actual expenditure unless an alternate deadline was approved in writing at the time of the advance request.

Additionally, it is the responsibility of the PI/PD to ensure that all advances within a project are cleared before the end of the project. The PI/PD will be held accountable for any advances that are not cleared and therefore not reimbursed by the grantor.

Responsibilities of Post-Award office When approving Check Requests, Purchase Orders, and any salary payments, PostAward personnel must consider any outstanding advances within the project.

The Post-Award office will assist TUC Accounts Payable in contacting Project Directors regarding uncleared advances.

The Post-Award office will ensure that all advances are considered before a project is closed by reviewing the outstanding advance log. During the closing process, PostAward office personnel will contact the PI and inform them about any uncleared advances.

Responsibilities of TUC Accounts Payable TUC Accounts Payable personnel will track and monitor the timely clearing of all advances. TUC Accounts Payable personnel will maintain and monitor the advance log. The advance log is also accessible by Post-Award personnel for additional control purposes. The Accounts Payable Supervisor will review the advance log on a monthly basis to ensure adherence with the TUC advance procedure.


When an advance is needed for an allowable circumstance, the responsible parties and procedures are as follows:

1. Employee/Principal Investigator (PI)

   - Prepares Advance Request Form

   - Obtains required authorization

   - Submits completed Advance Request Form with detailed estimate of the expenses to TUC Financial Services

Note: students may not submit cash advance requests. If a student requires an advance in conjunction with a sponsored program, it is the responsibility of the PI or another employee to request the advance on the student’s behalf.

2. TUC Accounts Payable

   - Verifies all required information is provided and advance amount is within policy

   - Enters required information into advance log

   - Forwards Advance Request Form to Post-Award office

3. Research & Sponsored Programs Post-Award office

   - Verifies availability of funds

   - Allowability of expenses

   - Verifies signature authorization 

   - Returns approved Advance Request Form to TUC Accounts Payable

4. TUC Accounts Payable

   - Records expense information as detailed on Advance Request Form

   - Generates check and forwards to requestor

5. Employee/Principal Investigator

   - Spends money for intended reason and collects receipts

        o For travel, employee submits expense report via eTravel (please see travel guidelines)

        o For research incentives, PI prepares reconciliation log reflecting participation dates and subject records (e.g., names, email addresses, study IDs, or other records as permitted by approved IRB protocol) of participants who received money/incentives

   - Forwards all relevant documentation to TUC Financial Services/Accounts Payable 

6. TUC Accounts Payable

   - Verifies accuracy and eligibility of expenses

   - Clears the advance and updates the advance log


Procedure Information

Date of Last Revision: 06/14/19

Contact information:
TUC Accounting
Accounts Payable Department
Phone: Main: (818) 677-7289
Email: aptuc@csun.edu