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Stanford's Reimbursement / Expense Reporting Process

Stanford uses its Expense Requests system for processing and tracking expense reports / reimbursements as well as for advance requests, direct payment requests (Non-PO Payments), petty cash administration.

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Responsibilities and Authority for Reimbursement and Expense Reporting

Faculty and/or their administrators are responsible for:

  • initiating expense reports within 10 days of incurring the expense(s) or completing travel for Stanford business. If requests are not made within 60 days, the amount paid by Stanford for expenses will be tax-reportable as income to the individual per IRS guidelines.
  • providing the necessary documentation to support the request. Depending upon the type and value of the expense, certain requirements for documentation apply.

Transactions submitted in the Expense Requests system are reviewed for authorization by designated "approvers," usually a department or other representative with authority to approve charges to the appropriate PTAE. Approvers must be someone other than the payee and other than the person initiating the request. Approvers can not be someone who reports to the payee or initiator (either directly or indirectly).

Once approved, transactions are routed to a processor in the Travel and Reimbursements (T&R) department. The T&R processor checks to see that the expenditures and backup documentation comply with policy and government regulations, and if compliant, approve the transaction for payment. When a transaction is non-compliant, it is rejected and the person initiating the transaction is notified of required action.

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Reimbursement Methods

Reimbursement requests are made by submitting an Expense Report in the Expense Requests system. For detailed instructions, see How To Create New Expense Report for an SU Payee (Faculty, Staff, or Student).

If your department maintains a Petty Cash fund, you may request reimbursement from that fund for a business expense of less than $100. See How To: Get Reimbursed via Petty Cash.

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For more information on paying for business expenses at Stanford, including overviews, how-tos, policy, resources and job aids, forms, and related training, see, in the Staff section of this web site:

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