Petty Cash Guidelines

The following guidelines should be used when requesting petty cash. These policies are in place to protect the interests of the university and its employees. The following policies are meant to serve as a guide for the distribution and settlement of petty cash; however, policies may be changed or altered at any time to ensure that our best practices are maintained for auditing purposes. Any modifications must be approved by the Business Office Manager, Assistant Comptroller, A.V.P/Comptroller, or V.P. of Business and Finance. 

Petty cash is used for reimbursement only.

The Reimbursement Method

Petty cash may be used to reimburse an individual for a purchase that was made using his/her personal funds. Upon presentation of original, itemized receipts to support the expenditure, the individual will be reimbursed for the exact amount (minus sales tax) of the purchase.

What do I need to do to get reimbursed?

  • Original, itemized receipts must be submitted when requesting petty cash.
    • Copies of receipts are not valid and will not be accepted.
    • Printed receipts from online purchases must be approved/signed by the respective budget owner.
    • Handwritten receipts will not be accepted.
  • Receipts must correspond to the description of the petty cash ticket and account number designated on the ticket.
  • Receipts for business travel (e.g., gas, taxi, hotel) made out-of-town (outside a 50-mile radius from San Antonio) must be approved by the Accounts Payable manager.
  • Receipts for entertainment must include names of attendees and business purpose.
  • Proof of event (flyer, email blast, etc.) with information about the event (date, location, time, purpose).

Petty Cash Guidelines

  • Petty cash must be approved by the individual responsible for the respective general ledger budget line (President, VPs, Comptroller, Directors, Managers, Deans, and Department Chairs). 
  • The university does not pay taxes on items purchased through petty cash.
    • Tax on entertainment expenses at local restaurants is allowed.
    • Sales tax exemption forms are available in the Comptroller's Office and the Business Office.
  • Meals that involve UIW personnel should be during the appropriate mealtimes with a business-related purpose.
  • Gifts to employees for recognition/appreciation may not exceed $25 ($100 for retiring employees).
    • The purpose for the gift and names of recipients must be documented on the petty cash request form.

The following accounts require additional approval before requesting petty cash

  • All petty cash requests for Athletics (for both restricted and non-restricted accounts) require approval by the Grants Accounting Office.
  • All petty cash requests for restricted accounts (ex. 2xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx) require approval by the Grants Accounting Office.
  • All petty cash requests for agency accounts (ex. 7xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx) require approval by the Comptroller's Office.
  • Petty cash for flowers/gifts of condolences for death, hospitalization, or birth/adoption of a child must first be approved by Human Resources, and may not exceed $100.

The following items may NOT be purchased with petty cash

  • Office supplies (pens, ink cartridges, note pads, etc.) and small furniture/equipment (account 6588) should be ordered through the Purchasing Department
  • Annual renewals (membership fees, web domain renewals, equipment rentals, etc.) and conference registration fees must be processed through the Accounts Payable department
  • Alcoholic beverages (requires approval from VP of Finance, Business Office Manager, or Comptroller)
  • Restaurant tips exceeding 20%
  • Personal expenses (including but not limited to):
    • Birthdays, going away parties, showers, gifts, meals, flowers, tickets to university/school-sponsored events, etc.