Procurement Card User Manual – Section 2

How to Use Your P-Card

Ordering Process:

The P-Card may be used to purchase approved goods and services in person (at the point of sale), over the phone, by mail or over the Internet. Please remember when using your P-Card over the Internet, to be sure that you are using a secure site. Prior to placing the order, check the University and State Contract Supplier Listing for the applicable contract suppliers for the product or service you are about to order. All Cardholders are encouraged to order required goods and services from those suppliers who are authorized contract suppliers to the University. When placing your order, please be sure to provide the vendor the following information:

  • Identify yourself as a University of Connecticut employee;
  • State that you are making the purchase using a MasterCard P-Card;
  • State that it is a tax-exempt purchase and provide the tax exempt number listed on the front side of the P-Card;
  • State Cardholder name;
  • Provide individual P-Card number and expiration date on P-Card;
  • Provide complete delivery address including building and room number;
  • State the appropriate University or State contract that you are using to insure that you receive correct pricing and applicable prompt payment discounts;
  • State the quantity and description of the items being ordered;
  • Verify the total cost of the purchase with the vendor;
  • Furnish any other information that may be required.

Note: Please inform the vendor not to send a bill or invoice to the ordering department or Accounts Payable. Submitting an invoice for a charge card transaction may result in a duplicate payment.


Shipping Instructions:

Important: Tell the vendor that the address label/packing list that accompanies the package must contain the following information:

Cardholders Name

Department Name

Building and Room Number

Street Address, Unit Number

Storrs, CT 06069

Packages that are not labeled as above described may delay the delivery of items ordered indefinitely. Under no circumstance should the vendor indicate the P-Card number on any address label or packing list. Listing of same would threaten the security of your P-Card. Upon receipt of your order, keep the documentation received from the vendor (typically a sales receipt, cash register receipt, or packing slip) for later reconciliation. Each month you will receive a Cardholder statement listing all of your purchases. Check this statement against your sales receipts and packing slips to ensure that you have received all the goods for which you have been charged. Upon reconciliation, forward the statements and all supporting documentation to the individual within your department, school or center who has been assigned responsibility for document retention (Record Manager).


UConn Bookstore:

The P-Card may be used for departmental purchases from the UConn Bookstore. The P-Card cannot be used for personal purchases of any type from the Bookstore or for any other restricted purchases identified in this user manual.


Proof of Purchase Documentation:

With the authority to purchase comes the responsibility for maintaining adequate documentation at the source of the transaction. It is the responsibility of each department to develop a process and assign responsibility for document retention in accordance with the requirements set forth in this manual. Each month you will receive a Cardholder statement listing all of your purchases. Check this statement against your sales receipts and packing slips to ensure that you have received all the goods for which you have been charged. Adequate documentation must be maintained to record the transaction at the source. Documentation must support the legitimate business purpose of all transactions made with the P-Card. The following are examples of supporting documentation:

  • Copies of order forms or applications;
  • Internal order form if applicable;
  • Cash register receipts;
  • Sales receipts; and/or
  • Vendor order number if any, for telephone orders.

Upon verification, forward the statement and all supporting documentation to the individual within your department, school or center who has been assigned responsibility for reconciliation and document retention (Record Manager). The Cardholder statement you receive is for your information and audit purposes only. The University will pay JP Morgan Chase directly. Use of the P-Card will in no way affect or change your personal credit history.


Disputing a Transaction:

The Cardholder is responsible for following up with a vendor regarding any erroneous charges, disputed items or returns within fifteen (15) business days from receipt of the bank statement. A Cardholder may dispute a charge that appears on their monthly P-Card statement. Disputed charges can result from failure to receive goods, fraud or misuse, altered charges, defective merchandise, incorrect amounts, duplicate charges, credits not processed, etc. The Cardholder should contact the vendor first to resolve any outstanding issues. Most issues can be resolved this way. If the Cardholder is unable to reach agreement with the vendor, the next step is to complete a “Statement of Questioned Item” form and send it along with any supporting documentation to the following address:


Program Administrator Nancy Patrylak

Purchasing Department

3 Discovery Drive, Unit 6076

Storrs, Connecticut 06269

All disputed transactions must be submitted to the P-Card Administrator within fifty (50) days of the monthly cycle date. Your request will be sent directly to JP Morgan Chase for review. When JP Morgan Chase has completed its investigation, the Cardholder will be informed of the resolution and any corrections that were made. Please note that, by law, vendors are not permitted to bill your credit card for purchases until the items have been shipped.


Receipt of Goods and Services:

The Cardholder is responsible for ensuring receipt of goods and services and follow-up with the vendor to resolve any delivery problems, discrepancies or damaged goods.

Returning Item(s):

Item(s) should be returned directly to the vendor by whichever means the vendor requires. The Cardholder is responsible to see that the proper charge is posted for any returned item(s). (refer to Disputing a Transaction).


Using the P-Card for Grant Purchases:

The P-Card may be utilized for grant purchases, however, the use of the P-Card for a grant or contract requires some forethought since the purchasing authority has been transferred to you through issuance of the P-Card. Careful judgement must be exercised before you make a purchase with the P-Card against grants. You must clearly understand what constitutes an allowable charge to your particular program. You should be aware, for example, that supplies on grants must be “lab” and not office supplies. If you have questions in this area the staff in the Office of Sponsored Programs remains available to assist you.

Grant Purchases Checklist:

  • Grant purchases are permitted provided that the item purchased is an allowable charge against the grant;
  • The P-Card cannot be used for charging departmental costs to a grant account;
  • Grant purchases must be made in accordance with the restrictions terms and conditions of the grant;
  • The grant account cannot be used as a clearing account for P-Card purchases;
  • KFS account and object code assigned to the purchase must be appropriate;
  • When placing an order against a grant account, the “received date” must be within the terms of the grant or contract;
  • P-Card purchases can be charged to a grant account through the re-allocation process only. If an incorrect account or object code is used, correction shall be required and accomplished through a general error correction;
  • Submit P-Card Log with supporting documentation to Record Manager within prescribed deadlines;
  • A direct benefit must be shown for all P-Card purchases made against a grant account;
  • Any questions should be directed to the Office of Grants and Contracts.

Where can you use the card?:

The P-Card can be utilized at virtually any location that accepts the MasterCard. You should use University and State Contracts whenever possible as they offer the most competitive pricing and favorable terms to the University. A list of University Contract vendors are listed on the Purchasing Department’s Home Page or State Contracted Vendors on DAS Website.


P-Card Administration

Acquiring a P-Card:

Only permanent full or part time employees of the University, designated by the Department Reporting Authority, will be permitted to receive a P-Card. An individual may only receive his or her P-Card after the following:

  • Completing an Application Form & Record Manager Designation Form;
  • Attending a Mandatory P-Card Training Session;
  • Signing a Cardholder Agreement Form.

The Cardholder is required to read the P-Card User Guide and must adhere to all P-Card policies and procedures outlined therein. Prospective Cardholders and Record Managers must be present at the mandatory training session. Failure to attend this training session will prevent receipt of the P-Card.

Retired Employees as Cardholders

Retirees returning as part-time employees may continue to hold a P-Card if all of the following criteria are met:

  • The retiree must be returning to work in the same department where they previously held a P-Card;
  • The retiree had no significant P-Card audit findings while a full time employee;
  • Dean or Department Head approves the retirees continued use of the P-Card.


Canceling P-Cards:

To cancel a P-Card, the card must be cut in half and sent to the P-Card Program Administrator, Nancy Patrylak along with a written request for cancellation. All Cardholders are responsible to notify Purchasing to cancel their P-Card prior to leaving the University or accepting a position in a new department.

Renewal of Existing P-Cards:

A new P-Card will automatically be sent to the P-Card Administrator at least thirty (30) days in advance of your current P-Card’s expiration date. Renewed P-Cards will be distributed by the P-Card Administrator.

Lost or Stolen P-Cards:

It is the responsibility of the Cardholder to report a lost or stolen P-Card immediately. Notification must be made by phone directly to JP Morgan Chase at (800) 848-2813 and to Nancy Patrylak, the P-Card Program Administrator at 486-2622 at the time of the occurrence. Verbal reports of lost or stolen P-Cards must be followed in writing utilizing the “Lost or Stolen Purchasing Card Notification” Form as soon as possible.

P-Card Security:

Only authorized Cardholders may use the P-Card or up to the maximum of two (2) individuals within the department that have been granted secondary use authorization by the Cardholder. In granting this secondary authorization, it should be noted that the Cardholder remains directly responsible for the proper use of the P-Card in accordance with established procedures. P-Cards and P-Card numbers must be safeguarded by the Cardholder against use by unauthorized individuals within or outside the University.


Misusing the P-Card:

The P-Card represents the University’s trust in you and your empowerment as a responsible employee of the University to safeguard and protect our assets. As a Cardholder, you assume the responsibility for the protection and proper use of the P-Card. The following situations are examples of misuse of the P-Card:

  • Use of P-Card for personal purchases;
  • Use of P-Card by individual other than Cardholder or authorized secondary user;
  • Use of the P-Card to purchase a restricted item as identified in the user guide;
  • Use of the P-Card in excess of assigned Cardholder limits, available budget and/or after the expiration date of a grant or contract;
  • Splitting orders at point of sale to avoid the single transaction limit;
  • Re-allocation of non-grant expenditure to grant account;
  • Receipt of item outside of grant period;
  • Inappropriate re-allocation; and/or
  • Failure to re-allocate charges within the period specified for re-allocation.

Misuse of the P-Card will be handled promptly and uniformly for all Cardholders. Refer to the Post Audit section of this manual for how consequences of misuse will be handled.


P-Card Reviews:

To ensure the continued success of the P-Card Program and to meet the audit requirements of the University, various government agencies, and the requirements of this Program, periodic reviews will be made of Cardholders’ accounts to ensure that items purchased have been received and that policies and procedures are being followed. Reviews will be completed in accordance with the following guidelines:

  • Periodic reviews will be completed on site for each Cardholder;
  • Review teams consisting of one (1) representative from Accounts Payable and one (1) from Purchasing will be assigned in rotation to complete a written review report with findings for each Cardholder account;
  • Review reports will be completed utilizing a post audit checklist to record any infractions against the categories of misuse outlined herein;
  • Reviews will be completed on each account as time permits subject to the quantity of P-Cards issued;
  • Reviews will be completed more frequently on those accounts where infractions were previously identified;
  • Random reviews may be scheduled at any time in addition to the regularly scheduled review rotation.

Reviews will be conducted for the purpose of confirming compliance to established procedures for P-Card use and to report areas of P-Card misuse to the P-Card Program Administrator for further action: Consequences of misuse may include any one (1) or combination of the following remedial actions:

  • Verbal notification of infraction;
  • Written notification with copies sent to P-Card Program Administrator and Reporting Authority;
  • Temporary suspension of Cardholder privileges with mandatory re-training (Suspensions will be assessed for a period of minimum of thirty (30) days or up to ninety (90) days depending on the severity of the infraction);
  • P-Card suspension with permanent loss of privileges;
  • Disciplinary action up to and including dismissal, personal liability and repayment (referred to Human Relations Department for disposition).


Reporting requirements may include any one or combination of the following options subject to the determination of the P-Card Program Administrator.

  • Formal written warnings will be sent to the individual Cardholder from the University P-Card Program Administrator with copies to the Cardholder’s immediate supervisor, Dean/ Director, or Department Head;
  • The Director of Purchasing and the Controller will be copied on the notification based upon the severity of the infraction. The notification will include a warning for P-Card revocation pending further investigation and/or misuse.

The P-Card Program Administrator will also be available to provide training and technical support to Cardholders, as needed.


Sales Tax Exemption:

The University of Connecticut is a tax-exempt organization. The tax-exempt number appears on the front of each P-Card. This number must be given to all vendors by the Cardholder at the time of the transaction to exempt payment of state sales tax. In addition, all Cardholders can access the tax exempt certificate for P-Card Use Only on our website. Connecticut Tax Exempt Certificate and Florida Tax Exempt Certificate. If sales tax is billed incorrectly to the Cardholder’s account, it is the responsibility of the Cardholder to contact the vendor to obtain a credit for the tax.

Reallocation Process:

Getting the P-Card Charges into the Accounting System

  • The bank will provide charge information daily. This will generate an e-doc that will go into the action list of the Cardholder as an FYI notifying them that their P-Card was used. This will also generate an e-doc that will go into the Record Manager’s action list that they will use to reallocate the charge;
  • These charges will be made directly to the account that was specified on the application, and will affect the budget available in that account;
  • The charges will be made against a clearing object code, so that they will be easily picked out as P-Card charges.

Moving the Charges to the Appropriate Accounts:

  • The P-Card charges must be transferred out of the clearing object code to the exact (non-clearing) expenditure object codes or to a separate accounts and object codes;
  • Only appropriate charges should be transferred to Grant accounts;
  • Training in this procedure will be provided to Record Managers and Cardholders;
  • Reallocation must be done within five (5) business days from receipt of the reconciled P-Card Log and bank statement from the Cardholder. The combined process of reconciliation and re-allocation shall take no more than 15 business days from receipt of bank statement by the Cardholder;
  • Flexibility at purchase time requires some extra time on the record keeping end.

CBS Reallocation Instructions