BISHOP S UNIVERSITY EXPENSE REIMBURSEMENT POLICY. Effective Date: January 1, 2011 Prepared by: Business Office

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1 BISHOP S UNIVERSITY EXPENSE REIMBURSEMENT POLICY Effective Date: January 1, 2011 Prepared by: Business Office Policy Number: VPFA Approved by: Bishop s Executive Group November 2010 Revised: January 1, SCOPE The purpose of this policy is to provide all University employees (staff, faculty, librarians and management) with general guidelines and information regarding allowable expenses and the procedures for reimbursement of reasonable claims. Legitimate expenses related to University approved business travel will be reimbursed. When appropriate, this policy should be read in conjunction with the applicable Collective Agreements, Guideline from Research granting agencies and/or the Signing Authority policy. 2.0 GENERAL An employee must complete a Reimbursement Requisition Form requesting reimbursement for allowable expenses incurred. The form must state the reason for the travel and include appropriate justification for the claim. Expenses that have already been, or will be, reimbursed by another organization, or that will be used as an allowable deduction for personal income tax purposes may not be claimed from the University. It is understood that any amount expensed, and for which reimbursement is being sought, must be reasonable in the circumstances. Personal expenses incurred by or on behalf of the claimant, his or her family, or friends may not be reimbursed. If there is any doubt as to the application and scope of this policy, the employee is encouraged to consult his or her immediate supervisor or the Manager of Financial Services. In all instances, original receipts are required to support the expense reimbursement claim (except for allowances and per diems). All Reimbursement Requisition Forms charging University accounts must be completed electronically, printed and signed by the claimant and the departmental chairperson or manager (approval exceptions may apply to certain PDF and Research Grant transactions). A special attention should be given in order to account for the expenses in the fiscal year in which they have been incurred. Please note that the year-end date for Bishop s is April 30 th and the year-end for most of the granting agencies is March 30 th VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 1

2 3.0 TRAVEL An employee who travels on University business shall be entitled to claim and receive all reasonable and actual expenses, or allowances, in accordance with this policy. When submitting a claim for travel reimbursement, the nature and the reason, by trip, for the expenses incurred must be clearly indicated on the Reimbursement Requisition Form. If travelling to attend a meeting, a conference or a workshop, a copy of the agenda or the program must be attached to the Reimbursement Requisition Form. While the method of travel may be at the option of the traveller, he or she should consider all costs and time available and should select the least expensive option. For travel under six hundred (600) kilometres, an employee may travel by vehicle, bus, rail or economy class air. For travel exceeding six hundred (600) kilometres, an employee should consider travelling by economy class air to destination. The total claim (including accommodations and meals en route) should not exceed economy airfare plus local ground transportation. 3.1 Civil liability insurance when travelling abroad There are limitations on the coverage of the civil liability insurance when travelling to certain countries abroad. The Canadian Government forbids insurance companies to grant insurance in countries where economic sanctions have been imposed. It is important to look at the list of countries published on the Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada Website prior to plan a trip abroad: Private automobile Use of private automobile should be limited to those trips where suitable public transportation or car rental is not available or where a private automobile is more efficient, considering all costs and time available. Current mileage allowance is $0.45 per kilometre (this rate may be reviewed and may be adjusted from time to time). This rate is intended to cover the cost of gas, car insurance, repairs and maintenance, etc. No other vehicle related expenses will be reimbursed. The current flat rate for travel from Sherbrooke to major centres (return) is as follows: o Montreal 330 km $ o Quebec 500 km $ o Toronto 1420 km $ The University does not provide personal automobile insurance. This is solely the responsibility of the driver or owner of the vehicle. 3.3 Bus, rail or air For travel by bus, rail or air, an employee will be reimbursed for the actual cost of the travel based on an economy class ticket. He or she will also be reimbursed for the transportation to and from that departure point VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 2

3 Flight cancellation insurance and travel agent fees are allowable expenses. Any luggage surcharge needs to be justified. A claim for airfare must be supported by the passenger s printed electronic ticket and boarding pass. Please refer to the Business Office website to learn more about vendor agreements and discounts. 3.4 Car rental When renting a vehicle for University travel, the employee will be reimbursed the actual cost of the car rental in accordance with this policy. The University currently has rental agreements with the following car rental agencies in Sherbrooke: o Enterprise Car Rental Location Sévigny 4355, boul Bourque 1979, rue King Est Sherbrooke, QC J1N 1S4 Sherbrooke, QC J1G 5G Other rental agencies may be used where required. When renting a car for approved University purposes (business meeting, research, etc), the University s name must appear on the rental contract for insurance purposes. For rentals outside of Canada, insurance coverage is mandatory. Vehicles with values exceeding $50,000 are not eligible for Bishop s University insurance coverage and therefore rental of luxury automobiles is prohibited and rental of luxury automobiles will not be reimbursed. Automobile rentals are reimbursed for intermediate, compact or sub-compact sized vehicles only. Before returning the vehicle to the drop off location, the vehicle must be filled with fuel. In the event that a vehicle is rented and/or driven by an individual under 25 years of age, an containing the following information should be sent to Kylie Cote in the Business Office at least 2 working days in advance of the beginning of the rental period: o Driver s Name o Driver s Date of Birth o Driver s License Number, Expiration Date and Province of Issue o Start Date and Duration of Rental Should Kylie Cote be unavailable, the information should be sent to Melanie Roarke also in the Business Office VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 3

4 3.5 Other transportation related expenses Taxi fares are allowable and receipt must indicate date, starting point, and destination of each trip. Parking expenses are allowable and must be accompanied by a receipt. Traffic violations are not allowable expenses. 3.6 Accommodations: Reasonable and actual hotel, motel and lodging expenses shall be reimbursed at full cost on submission of original receipts. These expenses include the room charges and taxes. The University does not normally reimburse for additional services provided by a hotel establishment, such as dry cleaning, laundry, newspapers, movies, hotel tips, and personal items. Please refer to the Business Office website to learn more about vendor agreements and discounts. Original detailed receipts must be attached to the claim form. Documents such as credit card slips alone cannot be used for reimbursement, as they do not provide a detailed list of the charges being paid for and taxes charged. Meals and other charges included on hotel/motel bill should be claimed in the proper categories on a separate line item of the Reimbursement Requisition Form (e.g. meals should be charged to the account ending in 51600, not in the travel account ending in 51100). The maximum allowable per diem must not be exceeded; please refer to section 4.0 Meals for more detail. A per diem allowance to cover accommodations while travelling on University business and staying with relatives or friends may be used. The rate currently in effect is $35.00 per night (this rate may be reviewed and may be adjusted from time to time). 4.0 MEALS A daily subsistence maximum per diem (the rate may be reviewed and may be adjusted time to time) can be claimed consisting of: Canada United States Europe: countries in euro zone All others Breakfast CAD$ 10 U$S 10 Euro$ 10 U$S 10 Lunch CAD$ 15 U$S 15 Euro$ 15 U$S 15 Diner CAD$ 35 U$S 35 Euro$ 35 U$S 35 Total CAD$ 60 U$S 60 Euro$ 60 U$S 60 Any exception to these rates will require pre-approval. The per diem will be paid in Canadian dollars at the BO published exchange rate. When attending a conference or meeting, meals are often included in the conference fee or provided by the host. A per diem cannot be claimed in such cases VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 4

5 When the employee acts as host of visitors on official university business: o The University will reimburse full and actual meal expenses. The nature and purpose of the event, including the name of the group, number of guests or the names of the people being entertained, must be listed on the Reimbursement Requisition Form or the receipt. o Only reasonable alcohol charges will be reimbursed Restaurant tips will be reimbursed to a maximum of 15%.Reimbursement for an internal employee meeting is eligible only in circumstances when the meeting cannot be scheduled during regular working hours. The claimed amount should not exceed the per diem defined for breakfast, lunch or supper, per person. Alcohol will not be reimbursed. For all business meals where more than one Bishop s employee is present, the most senior person must pay for the meal and submit the claim for reimbursement. In all other instances (travel, conferences, etc), the maximum allowable per diem must not be exceeded otherwise it will be deducted from your claim. Please note that some research grants do not allow charges for meals and entertainment and also specifically exclude alcohol. 5.0 FOREIGN CURRENCY TRANSACTIONS If the expense is paid in a currency other than the Canadian dollar, Canadian equivalent must be indicated on the Reimbursement Requisition Form. US $ transactions: In order to be reimbursed the equivalent amount paid in Canadian dollars, a copy of the credit card statement must be attached to the Reimbursement Requisition Form. If this rate is not available, you can find the monthly rate used by the Business Office on the Web site: Other currency transactions: Please refer to the Bank of Canada rate in order to obtain the proper rate, using the currency converter tool available at this address: Please print the conversion converter page used and attach it to the Reimbursement Requisition Form. Please note that the Business Office may change the rate for transactions dated more than 30 days from the reimbursement submission date. 6.0 APPROVAL PROCESS The claimant and the person approving the reimbursement are responsible for ensuring that claims for expenses are accurate, allowable, legitimate and reasonable in the circumstances VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 5

6 By signing the Reimbursement Requisition Form, the claimant indicates that all expenditures incurred are related to the University business, that charges included have not been submitted to other organizations for reimbursement, that expenditures are in accordance with the applicable University policies, and that they will not be used for income tax purposes. All Reimbursement Requisition Forms charging University accounts require the signature of the claimant and the department chairperson or manager (approval exceptions may apply to certain PDF and Research Grant transactions). The individual who approves the Reimbursement Requisition Form is also responsible for ensuring that the reimbursement is made in accordance with applicable University policies and that the amounts are charged to the proper accounts. Specifically, travel costs must be coded to accounts ending in 51100, meal costs must be coded to accounts ending in and only costs relating to receptions and special functions can be coded to accounts ending in Exceptions may apply to certain PDF and Research Grant transactions. Approval and reimbursement of the expense claim does not constitute final acceptance. All transactions are subject to subsequent audit adjustments. Amounts refused must be reimbursed personally by the claimant. The Manager of Financial Services has the right and obligation to refuse claims that do not conform to this policy, to any other University s policies, Government legislations or Research granting agency guidelines. The Manager of Financial Services may also authorize particular expenses that are not expressly covered by this policy. 7.0 REIMBURSEMENT PROCEDURE For a prompt and efficient reimbursement, the employee must complete electronically the Reimbursement Requisition Form (available online at: The Reimbursement Requisition Form should be used only to reimburse University employees for allowable travel expenses. For payments to companies or individuals external to the University, an invoice from that company or individual should be submitted to the Business Office in lieu of the Reimbursement Requisition Form. Instructions for completing the Reimbursement Requisition Form are included on the Business Office webpage. A form that is not properly filled out may be returned to the claimant. The reimbursement will only be made to the individual who incurred the expenditure. The dates, purpose of the trip, and each city visited must be listed on the Reimbursement Requisition Form. Supporting documents such as conference registration form meeting invitation or correspondence with the person visited must be attached to the form. In the case of a claim including mileage only, a supporting document should justify the location visited, such as a gas receipt in the area of the place visited. The specific nature of all expenses must be clearly identified VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 6

7 All expenses must be supported by an original receipt or paid invoice. Where possible, receipts should be sorted in order of expenditures as listed on the Reimbursement Requisition Form. Documents such as credit card slips cannot be used for reimbursement, as they do not provide a detailed list of the charges being paid for and taxes charged. Sales taxes included on the receipts submitted must be entered in the correct columns on the form. This is required to claim the appropriate rebate from each government. The rebate will be credited to the general ledger account immediately. If the sales taxes are not identified in the appropriate columns, the rebates may not be claimed and will not be credited to the account. The Business Office will process and reimburse expenses. A direct deposit or a cheque will be issued to the employee based on the reimbursement method selected in her/his vendor file. Please allow a minimum of ten (10) business days for processing. By default, an employee will be reimbursed by cheque. An employee can be reimbursed by direct deposit by completing the appropriate form available on the Business Office website. Reimbursement Requisition Forms should be completed within 30 business days of the travel end date. Normally, reimbursement claims for expenses older than 12 months will not be allowed VPFA-02, January 2013 Page 7

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