The University may advance funds to its employees for projected travel expenses when traveling on official state business funded by the University.
To receive a cash (travel) advance, the University requires an approved Travel Authorization and a promissory note (Authorization to Deduct Outstanding Travel Advance from Payroll Check). The state of Texas allows a cash (travel) advance for up to 90% of the per diem for meals and lodging.
Unused cash (travel) advance funds need to be redeposited at the Student Business Services Office within 45 days from completion of the travel. Should this grace period be exceeded, a payroll deduction will automatically occur on the next available payroll. Additional cash (travel) advances will not be issued if an outstanding advance is still pending.
As a reminder, the University follows Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations, which allow an accountable plan to be non-taxable. Any cash (travel) advance that is not substantiated within 60 days of the date issued will be added to the employee’s income and taxed at the appropriate withholding tax rate. Refer: IRS Publication 463, Section 6 How to Report.
To ensure timely approval, the cash (travel) advance request must be submitted to the Travel department at least 10 and no more than 15 business days before the trip. Emergency checks will not be issued for late requests. The amount requested cannot exceed 90% of the per diem for meals and lodging, or 90% of the per diem for meals, if lodging is prepaid.
A cash (travel) advance may be requested by having the department travel planner contact the Travel Office. The department travel planner will e-mail a request to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
- Name of Traveler;
- Employee ID;
- Dates of Travel;
- Per diem rates from GSA of the destination;
- Approved Travel Authorization; and
- Signed Authorization to Deduct Outstanding Travel Advance from Payroll.
The traveler will be reimbursed for travel expenses on a PeopleSoft Expense Report document. The travel planner will create an expense report in PeopleSoft, apply the cash (travel) advance to the report, and attach all supporting documentation. The document will be sent electronically to the Accounts Payable Department for final review and approval.
The University may advance travel funds to its employees for projected travel expenses only when the expenses are incurred during business travel that requires an overnight stay, the traveler does not hold an IBA card, and if one or more of the following are applicable:
- The destination of the travel is to an isolated region with limited access to suppliers or services that accept credit cards;
- Travel is for more than 3 consecutive days;
- A faculty member is taking a group of students in accordance with the Student Travel Policy for University Organized or Sponsored Events.
Last Updated: August 18, 2016
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