Financial Services Manual (FIN)

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Effective: 6/21/1983

Revised: 7/10/2012

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FIN 505–02: Out-of-State Travel Reimbursement

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Purpose

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To allow university employees to travel out of state on official university business. Also, on an as-needed basis, to allow students to travel when specifically approved by the college or department.

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Sources

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Internal Revenue Service regulations
Arizona Revised Statutes § 38–626

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Policy

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Out-of-state travel expenses are documented using the Travel Authorization/Claim form. To receive full reimbursement, original receipts and other supporting documentation must be submitted with the form. Itemized receipts are preferred and may be required in certain circumstances before reimbursement is made.


Travel Authorization Side of the Form

Reimbursement for out-of-state travel expenses will not be approved and processed unless the travel authorization side of the Travel Authorization/Claim form has been completed and approved. If the claim for reimbursement is $5,000 or greater and the estimated travel expenses were authorized for an amount less than $5,000, the approval of a dean or vice president or a business manager reporting to a dean or vice president, in addition to ATO approval, is required for processing the reimbursement.

Authorized Account Signer

If the authorizing travel official (ATO) is not an authorized account signer for the agency/org being charged, the authorized account signer’s approval may also be required by the agency/org.


Claim Side of the Form

The claim side of the Travel Authorization/Claim form is used to reimburse out-of-pocket expenses and to repay any advances received by a person traveling on university business (see FIN 505–01A for a flowchart outlining the travel reimbursement process). Prepaid, direct billed expenses and advances for the trip must be deducted on the “LESS PAID BY ASU” and “LESS TRAVEL ADVANCE” lines of the form.

The Travel Authorization/Claim form must be completed and any unspent travel advances repaid to ASU within 30 calendar days after a trip is completed. If a traveler receives a travel advance and does not submit a Travel Authorization/Claim form and/or does not repay ASU for unspent monies from a travel advance, the university seeks recovery of the advance through payroll deduction. (The IRS requires that any unspent travel advances be returned to the university in a timely manner.)

The traveler is responsible for ensuring that the Travel Authorization/Claim form is completed and delivered to Travel Reimbursements along with the appropriate receipts and documentation. (The IRS requires that all travel expenses be substantiated.)

Reimbursement for Lodging Costs

Reimbursement requests for actual lodging costs must be supported by an original lodging receipt and, in the case of a conference or formal meeting, a copy of the complete conference announcement or program that shows the lodging rate, meals provided, and the opening and closing dates. The lodging rate should be circled. Lodging will be reimbursed at the index rate as described in FIN 509, “Meals and Lodging,” if this information is not provided. Daily expenses such as per diems and lodging must be accounted for on a daily basis, rather than totaled as a lump sum expenditure.

Reimbursement for Meal Expenses

Meal per diems are not allowed when meals are provided at no additional cost at a conference or by an airline. Meal per diem allowances include incidental expenses. Domestic per diems are based on the travel destination/city where lodging was provided (see FIN 509, “Meals and Lodging,” for the applicable per diem rate).

Reimbursement for Travel

Reimbursement for travel is limited to the expenses of travel by the most direct and usually traveled route. Travelers traveling by an indirect route for their own pleasure and convenience will not be reimbursed for subsistence and travel expenses in excess of those that would have been required for travel by the most direct route. The university may also require a traveler to charge such excess travel time to vacation leave. See FIN 512, “Transportation,” for information on travel reimbursement.

Reimbursement for Rental Vehicles

Reimbursements for rental vehicles are made if:

  1. justification for the use of the rental vehicle was made on the car rental section of the Travel Authorization/Claim form
  2. the traveler has attended defensive driver training within the past three years before renting the vehicle

    and

  3. the request for a rental vehicle was signed by an ATO.

Reimbursement for Additional Expenses

Additional subsistence expenses incurred as a result of using an alternate mode of transportation rather than faster means, such as an airplane, are not allowed when such use is not in the best interest of the university.

Post-Settlement Adjustment

Subsequent to the initial reimbursement of travel claim expenses, an audit or other review may identify an error that resulted in an over- or underpayment to the traveler. In these cases, a repayment to the university by the traveler, or an additional payment to the traveler by the university, may be required regardless of the timeframe and funding source.


Receipts for Reimbursement

In order to receive reimbursement for travel expenses, the traveler must complete the Travel Claim form and provide all applicable original receipts (itemized when available). For information on receipts and/or documentation required for reimbursement, see FIN 511, “Receipts and Itemization.”


Potential ASU Foundation Reimbursement

Some travel reimbursements may be denied by the university due to restrictive ASU travel policies. If departments have ASU Foundation funds, they may request reimbursement from their ASU Foundation account for travel claims denied by the university. The ASU Foundation account used must allow for these type of expenses. A copy of the ASU Travel Claim and receipts along with an ASU Foundation Request for Reimbursement Form must be submitted to ASU Foundation.


Reimbursement by a Third Party

A traveler who receives reimbursement from a third party for travel expenses claimed on the travel reimbursement must return those funds to ASU. The returned funds shall be deposited to the agency/org and object/sub object code where the travel reimbursement was processed. This includes any travel pre-payments made by ASU.

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Procedures

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Out-of-State Travel Reimbursement

For a flowchart of the out-of-state travel reimbursement process see FIN 505–01A.D


Responsibility
Action
Within 30 calendar days of completing the trip:
Traveler
  1. Complete the claim (right) side of the Travel Authorization/Claim form and attach required original receipts (itemized when available) per the guidelines provided in FIN 511, “Receipts and Itemization.”
If the actual cost of the trip exceeds the estimated expense total by the greater of $100 or 10 percent:
Authorizing travel official
  1. Sign on the claim (right) side of the Travel Authorization/Claim form documenting approval of the expense overage.
If travel expenses are less than the travel advance received:
Traveler
  1. Attach a check payable to ASU to the Travel Authorization/Claim form.
  2. Submit a copy of the Travel Authorization/Claim form with original signatures, along with required receipts and documentation, to Travel Reimbursements. File a copy for departmental records.
Travel Reimbursements
  1. Process the Travel Authorization/Claim form and provide reimbursement to the traveler.

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