Purchasing & Reimbursement

Purchasing procedures

There are two ways to pay for equipment:

  1. credit card (aka purchasing card)
  2. purchase order (PO)

How do you decide which to do? In general, you want to use a PO when the order is (a) over $5k; (b) provided by a vendor who may not meet spec; (c) paid for by a grant not attached to one of our two purchasing cards; or (d) sold by a vendor who does not accept MasterCard. If none of these apply, you should use the purchasing card, because it's less paperwork and the order is placed faster. In either case, see the purchasing how-to page for what documentation to produce/keep/sign etc.

For a PO, get a formal quote (including lead time 'ARO' — after receipt of order) from the vendor. Get a second quote, if it's over $5k, and a third quote if it's over $25k. Next, download and fill out this requisition form. Email it to Joseph, along with the quote(s), who will put in the magic codes, sign, and submit it to the purchasing office. Also print a copy of everything (unsigned) and put it in the purchasing binder.

If you're curious, check out the University of Toronto financial services department for some university-wide policy.


When you travel for conferences, or buy lab supplies on your own credit card, you will need to fill out a reimbursement form. Download this Excel file. Fill it out and email it to Joseph so he can add the account numbers, print it, and sign it. The collect the form, sign it, and attach original copies of all receipts. If you fly KEEP YOUR BOARDING PASSES. Please use separate forms for separate events, because the same text will appear for all expenses on a particular form. If you drive and need a mileage rate, see UofT finance. The completed, signed form can be given to Joane Magnaye, in MP1109.

An exception is for cash purchases below $25. This can be reimbursed by Lisa Jefferson on the 3rd floor as "petty cash". An account number will still be needed, but no forms to fill out.

[Outdated:] PST exemption forms

Now that taxes are harmonized (GST), vendors charge us full tax. If we use the lab purchasing cards or use a purchase order, then we get a rebate on tax paid from the government, but vendors don't need to do anything different for us.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License