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Petty Cash

Petty cash funds are requested by departments for use as a change fund (used to make change for business sales transactions) or as a disbursement fund (for payments to participants in research projects) or as a purchase fund (to purchase items that are not available through normal purchase channels). Petty cash funds are established through the Office of the University Bursar (OUB) by completing a petty cash request form.

The person requesting the petty cash fund is referred to as the fund custodian and must be a Virginia Tech faculty member, classified staff employee, or a graduate assistant participating in a research project. Both the fund custodian and the department head are responsible for the proper use of the fund and for the repayment of the fund.

Request forms should be submitted to The Office of the University Bursar (OUB) 7 -10 days prior to the date the fund is needed. OUB reserves the right to deny requests based on the purpose/justification for the request, unauthorized department approval, the amount of the fund, the planned safeguarding of the fund, or any past due, outstanding petty cash balances owed in the fund custodians name, or any past due balances owed the University by the fund custodian. If a request is denied for any reason, a representative from the Office of the University Bursar will notify the individual requesting the fund. Once the University Bursar approves the request, it is sent to the University Controller's Office for a check to be issued to the fund custodian. The check may be picked up at the Customer Service Windows of the Office of the University Bursar. Petty cash checks must be picked up by the fund custodian. The fund custodian must present pictured identification to the customer service representative.

The Customer Service area in OUB is not authorized to cash checks of any type. Therefore, the fund custodian must cash the petty cash check at a bank. The fund custodian is responsible for the safeguarding of the funds. If the amount requested exceeds $500, the Funds Handling Guidelines and Procedures require the funds be kept in a departmental locked safe. Petty cash disbursement funds $2,000 and more require that a checking account be established by OUB to safeguard the funds. If a checking account is required and has been opened, the custodian will be notified by an OUB staff member that the funds have been deposited in the bank account and are available to disburse.

Funds are subject for review or audit by authorized University Officials at anytime. When a department has a fund custodian leave or change responsibilities, the petty cash funds must be transferred to a new custodian. The department must complete and return to the University Bursar a Petty Cash Fund Change of Custodian Form. The approver on this form must have signature authority on the Banner fund or grant in order to approve this form.

It is often necessary for the department to request an increase in the amount of the funds held for the change fund and for disbursement funds, additional funds are often needed to continue to pay subjects. These additional funds must be requested by completing the Petty Cash Form and the custodian must note that the amount requested is an additional amount to increase the current funds held.