Pcard Do's and Don't's by Topic

Restricted items:

Do: Review the restricted items list in the pcard manual. Restricted items include, but are not limited to, personal items, entertainment, meals, contractual obligations, printing & promotional items, and items tracked by Environmental Health & Safety. A more detailed discussion of these restrictions will occur in certification training.

Don't: Attempt to initiate a cash advance or purchase gift cards, gift certificates, or other types of vouchers with the card.

Sales Tax:

Do: At the time of purchase, request that state sales tax not be charged to the purchasing card. Show the merchant the sales tax exemption number on the front of the card and provide the wallet-sized DR-14 exemption certificate if requested. It is sometimes necessary to complete a merchant's tax exemption certification form when setting-up an account for the first time. Be cognizant of any sales tax charged during online transactions as well.

Don't: Declare your tax exemption status when traveling outside the state of Florida.

Timely Approval:

Do: Sign and date your sales receipt. pCard charges must be approved timely, within ten (10) working days after receipt of the transaction into the Purchasing Card system.  The 10-day approval period includes the entire approval process, beginning with the submission of a signed and dated receipt from the Cardholder to the pCard Approver and ending with the pCard Approver processing the transaction in the Purchasing Card system.  The combined time for submission of all receipts and approval may not exceed ten (10) working days.  A program area not meeting this requirement will jeopardize its participation in the Purchasing Card Program.

Don't: Wait for your Approver to contact you for this information. Doing so will impede the prompt payment requirement and may result in audit findings for the university.

Order splitting:

Do: Be aware of your established credit limits. You can check this at any time by calling 888-449-2273 and following the prompts.

Don't: Attempt to split orders so that the total of your transaction is greater than $4999. Purchases of $5000 or greater must adhere to the university's capitalization procedures and should be directed to the Purchasing Department.

Card Sharing:

Do: Understand that pCards are issued to specific individuals who have qualified for a card and have completed certification training. Pcards cannot be shared among department members.

Don't: Provide the physical card or card number to anyone other than the merchant.

Did you know?... Did you know that as a Cardholder, you may establish accounts with merchants listing yourself and other departmental members as authorized purchasers, solely at your discretion? Many merchants will allow you to further restrict this benefit by product category or dollar amount. Establishing an account in this manner allows flexibility without the risk of card compromise.


Do: Keep the card on your person or in a secure (locked) area. Sign the back of the card immediately upon activation. Review your monthly bank statements and notify the pCard Administrator and Bank of America of any unauthorized transactions.

Don't: Send your credit card information via unsecure email or write the card number on paper and instead seek out secure websites or in-person transactions when conducting business.


Do: Ensure that the merchant issues a credit to your account for any return or pricing adjustment. Credit receipts should be approved and forwarded to your pCard Approver similar to that of sales receipts.

Don't: Accept a cash refund from the merchant as an alternative to credit. Store credit may be issued provided you document it's use for official university business.

Office Supplies:

Do: Complete either/both of the Office Depot or Staples pCard set-up forms located on the Purchasing website. Doing so will register your pCard at the retail store locations for these contracted suppliers, and provide you with FAU specific pricing or sale pricing (whichever is lower) and automatically deduct sales tax. You will also be provided with a login for online purchases that will be linked to your pcard.

Don't: Attempt to use the card at retail locations without first registering your card through the online form.

Personal Purchases: (prohibited)

Do: Be sure to reimburse the university immediately (including sales tax) for any inadvertent purchase made on the pCard in error. You must also notify the pCard Administrator when this occurs.

Don't: Commingle personal and university purchases, personal and university travel, or FAU/ University Foundation obligations on your pCard.