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Business and Financial Policies and Procedures

8.3.1 Open a Program Advance

Policy Statement

A program advance may be used when a unit needs to pay for a one-time event or program activity and it is not practical to use other payment methods. Program advances may not be used for employee business travel-related expenses. Program advances may be used for student group travel and should include only student expenses. Any employee who travels with a student group should process their expenses in accordance with 15 Travel.

An employee can have only one outstanding program advance at any given time when the advance is not being used to pay human subjects. All employee groups are eligible to be custodians except undergraduate students, unpaid graduate students, hourly graduate students, extra help, and academic hourly. The payee (Custodian) is personally responsible for the safeguarding program advances and cannot allow the funds to be improperly used. If the program advance custodian failed to safeguard the advance or allowed it to be improperly used, the custodian must repay the money. If the loss was beyond the custodian’s control, it may be repaid from the unit’s budget or other available operating funds. In the event an advance is stolen, contact University police or local law enforcement. Program advances cannot be used to cover the cost of items that can be purchased with a P-card. Program advances cannot be used for reimbursement for expenses already incurred.

Program advances must be closed promptly upon completion of the event or program, preferably within 15 days. Program advances not closed within 60 days of the event or program may be reported as taxable income in accordance with IRS regulations. Advances not closed within 90 days may be deducted from the employee's wages.

For information about paying human subjects, consult 8.4.1 Open a Program Advance to Pay Human Subjects in Cash or Gift Cards.


Allow 72 hours for processing the request.

To open a program advance:

  1. Estimate how much money you will need. Provide detailed estimate outlining how the funds will be spent. The detailed breakdown will be required as backup documentation for the advance request.
    Miscellaneous or contingency categories will not be included as part of the advance.

    If the program involves travel, use the T-Card (Travel Card) to pay for the travel portion.
  2. Log in to TEM (Travel and Expense Management System). In the Create New area, select the Expense Report icon. If you need help identifying the icon, consult the job aid for System Navigation.
  3. In the Document Header screen, begin your Report Title with “ADV” so University Payables (UPAY) can expedite processing. Select “Advances” from the drop-down list in the Purpose field.
    Advances normally issue via ACH (direct deposit) to the custodian’s bank account.

    If a specific business need requires the advance to be issued via check, select from which University Bursar office you want to pick up the check using the drop-down list in the Special Handling Field of the Document header screen. The specific business need must be documented in the expense report notes. If specific denominations are needed, please specify that information in the expense report notes.

    Payments issued via check may require an additional 3 business days to process.
  4. Proceed through the screens. For step-by-step instructions, and required documentation, consult the Open and Close a Program Advance job aid.
  5. UPAY reviews the request and processes for payment. Payees will be notified at their university email address when the payment is deposited to their payroll bank account.

14.4 Manage Foreign Bank Accounts
8.3.2 Close a Program Advance
8.4.1 Open a Program Advance to Pay Human Subjects in Cash or Gift Cards
19 Contracts

TEM Resource Page
Job aid for System Navigation
Job aid for Open and Close a Program Advance
University Payables Training Materials
Clery Act Reporting Requirements
   University of Illinois at Chicago: Clery Compliance
   University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Clery Act (Policy Number : FO-21)
   University of Illinois at Springfield: UIS Police - Jeanne Clery Act

Last Updated: May 31, 2019 | Approved: Senior Associate Vice President for Business and Finance | Effective: September 2012

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