Skip to main content

OM 7.9.0 Expenses

About This Policy

Effective Date: 1971
Last Updated: November 2010
Responsible University Office: President's Office
Responsible University Administrator: Chief Financial Officer

Policy Contact:

Controllers Office


It is the policy of Clarkson University to reimburse necessary and reasonable expenses incurred in the conduct of official University activities. Both the person who incurs expenses and the person who approves reimbursement of expenses are responsible for achieving maximum economy in the expenditure of funds.

Reimbursement of expense is requested, substantiated, and approved on an Expense Account Form, or a Disbursement Order Form. The amounts reimbursed are charged to departmental and project accounts.

Within the framework of the general policy and procedure below, specific guidelines and procedures have been formulated. These are available at

  1. Travel Authorization 
    1. Individuals who expect reimbursement for their expenses of travel, entertainment, or other similar expenses incurred in the conduct of official University activities, must obtain prior authorization for such expenditures. Authorization is granted by the head of the department, dean, or other person authorized to approve such travel authorizations. 
    2. Travel authorization requests should be submitted by the individual on University Travel Authorization Form. 
  2. Accountability for Expenses 
    1. Individuals ordinarily will not be required to substantiate expense account information on their own income tax returns if a statement of expenses is made to their employer. The University provides the Expense Account Form or Disbursement Order Form for this purpose. 
    2. According to current Internal Revenue regulations, amounts reimbursed would be reportable by the University at the end of the year as income to the individual for tax purposes only if there is insufficient detail or substantiation of expenditures, excessive amounts or rates, or where the expense report is not approved by someone other than the person being reimbursed. If it is necessary for the University to report reimbursed amounts as income, it becomes the responsibility of the individuals to account for such expenses on their own income tax returns.
  3. Approval of Reimbursements 
    1. An Expense Account Form or a Disbursement Order Form must have two signatures: the signature of the person who incurred the expenses, and an approval signature by the head of the department, dean, or other person authorized to review expenses and approve requests for reimbursement. 
    2. Reimbursement may be limited to something less than the full amount of expenses because of budget limitations or other reasons. 
  4. Reimbursable Expenses 
    1. Reasonable and necessary expenses incurred by the individual in the conduct of official University activities may be approved for reimbursement, provided the expenses are detailed and substantiated properly on the Expense Account Form or the Disbursement Order Form. 
    2. Travel costs, entertainment, and other related expenses may be approved for reimbursement if common practice and the limitations established by the University are followed. To account for the changing nature of travel and entertainment costs, the rules for allowable expenses are found at These rules will be updated periodically as needed. Significant changes will be provided to the Faculty Senate and Administrative Council for review and comment. 
    3. Moving Expenses
      In the course of negotiating some employment agreements, the university offers to pay relocation expenses for incoming faculty and administrators. These expenses can be paid in two ways: 
      1. reimbursement to the new employee. He/she must provide original itemized receipts for the qualifying expenses. The reimbursement is made through payroll. Consequently, payment to the new employee cannot occur until the contract period begins and the first paycheck is due; and/or 
      2. direct payment to a third-party vendor who is providing relocation services, such as a moving company. A university purchase order is to be issued to the vendor in advance of the services.

      Following is a list of qualifying and non-qualifying moving expenses:

      Qualifying expenses
      • moving household goods and personal effects (including packing, crating, and transporting, as well as in-transit storage for up to 30 consecutive days); and 
      • travel to the new home, including lodging but not including meals. 

If travel to the new residence is by car, cost maybe figured either (1) as actual expense (e.g., for gas and oil) if accurate records are kept; or (2) at the deemed substantiation rate per IRS code. Parking fees and tolls are also qualified expenses.

If goods and effects are moved from a place other than the former residence (e.g. from a summer home), the deduction may not exceed the cost of shipping from the former residence. Reasonable expenses also include the cost of connecting or disconnecting utilities required because of moving household goods, appliance, or personal effects.

Reimbursable traveling expenses cover the cost of one trip for the employee and family from the old home to the new one by direct route via conventional means. The trip for each family member can occur at a separate time. Car rental expense can qualify, if reasonable, for this trip. Lodging qualifies as an excludable expense, but meals do not. Extra costs for side trips or stopovers (e.g., visits or sight-seeing) are not covered if they involve delay and/or detour.

Non-Qualifying expenses:

    • meal expenses incurred while moving from the old residence to the new; 
    • travel expenses, meals, and lodging for pre-move house hunting trips; 
    • meals and lodging incurred while occupying temporary quarters in the area of the new job; and 
    • expenses involving buying or selling a home.

back to top



Editorial Revision August 1973

Revised August 1977, 1979, 1980, 1982

(Item IV-B) November 1983;

(Item IV-B) January 1984,

October 1985, July 1989

Revised December 1992

Revised April 2007

Revised November 2010

Editorial Revision, December 2019

back to top