Skip to Content
California State University, Long BeachCalifornia State University, Long Beach


Direct Payment Request Administrative Guideline

Responsible University Officer: Associate Vice President of Financial Management
Primary Guideline Contact: Accounts Payable Manager


The purpose of this document is to ensure that the payment for goods and services needed for the operation of the CSULB Business Units are handled in a cost effective and efficient manner.

The Director of Procurement defines the circumstances by which employees may make a purchase without the requirement of a purchase order via three campus documents:

  • Delegation of Purchasing Authority
  • How to Purchase and Pay
  • Campus Signature Authority Guideline

The authority to obligate the University for purchases by signing contracts or agreements lies with the Procurement department. Signing contracts or agreements without the appropriately delegated authority may make the signer personally liable for the expense.

Each requester and appropriate administrator (approver) certifies by their approval to pay that the expenses are reasonable and necessary for the operations of the department, support the University’s mission, and fall within the guidelines of the above three campus documents.

This document is applicable to all three University Business Units which include California State University, Long Beach (LBCMP), CSULB Research Foundation (LBFDN) and CSULB 49er Foundation (LB49R), hereafter referred to as CSULB Business Units.


Direct Payments

Direct payments are defined as those purchases that do not require the establishment of a purchase order.

Typically these expenses:

  • Are low dollar value in nature as defined in How to Purchase and Pay and/or guidelines
  • Are low risk in nature
  • Reimburse an employee for out of pocket expenses not related to travel or hospitality
  • Are such that no value would be added by having a purchase order
  • Are covered by an existing contract or documented agreement

For full details on which transactions and circumstances may qualify a purchase for handling as a direct payment, please see How to Purchase and Pay.

Administrative Payments

Administrative payments are defined as payments made on behalf of the University and are required for operations. These payments are not for goods or services and are not subject to the Delegation of Purchasing Authority. Administrative payments are not generally supported by an invoice from a vendor. The requester and the appropriate administrator of an administrative payment hold fiscal administrative position at the University and the payment is seen as part of their job duties. Documentation in support of the payment may be an account/project reconciliation or request letter. In many instances these payments may be characterized as flow-through transactions or administrative adjustments in which the University has collected monies and is, in turn making the appropriate disbursement to an individual, corporation, auxiliary, or government agency.


  • Governmental payments; Municipal, County, State or Federal
  • University Credit Card Programs or Travel Account payments
  • Payments to replenish postage meters or Post Office bulk rate permits
  • Refunds or Deposits
  • Settlement of Due To/Due From balances between Business Units
  • Documentation to facilitate the State claims process


Employees who make unauthorized or prohibited purchases or procure goods or services outside of their delegated authority assume the risk of personal liability and non-reimbursement.


Due to tax reporting requirements, individuals may not pay for third party services and in turn seek reimbursement. Those expenditures must be routed and paid for directly by the University to the vendor/supplier (example: transcription or editing services, medical payments, photographers, musicians, guest speakers etc.)

If the department’s Direct Payment Request should have gone through the procurement channel, the request will be forwarded to the Director of Purchasing for review. Should this occur, the department will be contacted by either Accounts Payable or Purchasing, and payment will be delayed.


Appropriate Administrator/Approver

The person who has been granted both fiscal authority to sign for the chartfields and the transactional authority as defined in the campus Signature Authority Guideline.

Low Dollar Value Purchases

CSULB Business Units define a low-dollar value purchase as a procurement that is within the delegation of up to $10,000.00 including sales tax and freight and is not prohibited by CSU and/or any CSULB Business Unit’s Policy. Generally low-dollar value purchases are for non-restricted, repetitive, off-the-shelf goods. Refer to How to Purchase and Pay for additional details.


The individual who makes the request for payment and may also be the person who initiated the transaction. In the case of reimbursement, the requester is the payee.


Responsibilities of the Requester/Initiator

Before initiating a transaction on behalf of the University, it is the responsibility of the individual to ensure that the expenditure is ordinary, reasonable and necessary for the completion of the University mission, is properly approved and in compliance with the below guidelines:

  • Delegation of Purchasing Authority
  • How to Purchase and Pay
  • Campus Signature Authority Guideline

Responsibilities of the Appropriate Administrator/Approver

This individual has the responsibility to ensure that the expenditure is ordinary, reasonable and necessary for completion of the University mission, is properly approved and in compliance with the below guidelines:

  • Delegation of Purchasing Authority
  • How to Purchase and Pay
  • Campus Signature Authority Guideline

And in addition that:

  1. All processing and review steps, as stated above, have been followed
  2. Tax issues have been properly addressed
  3. There is no apparent conflict of interest on the part of the Approver or other individuals involved in the transaction


  1. If the purchase qualifies for direct payment, contact the vendor directly and order the goods. Specify that you are ordering on behalf of the University so that the University may realize any educational discounts to which the University may be entitled.
  2. Determine if the vendor has been set-up in PeopleSoft; if not obtain a Vendor 204 form. If theVendor 204 form is not received by Accounts Payable, payment will be delayed. Therefore, it is important to verify if the supplier/vendor is already in PeopleSoft. Look up a Supplier in CFS
  3. Vendor/Supplier invoices must contain information which describes what is being purchased, to whom the money is owed, where the money is to be sent, and when that money is due. A packing slip, memo billing, quote or a vendor statement cannot be substituted for an invoice.
  4. Acceptable forms of submission All direct payments require two different persons to acknowledge that the transaction is related to and is appropriate University business. The two parties are identified as the Requester/Initiator/Payee and the Appropriate Administrator/ Approver. Each of these parties must have their printed name and signature appear on any submission to Accounts Payable. The Appropriate Administrator/Approver must be of the correct level as required by the Delegation of Signature Authority.

    All direct payment requests must be submitted to Accounts Payable as described below using either a direct payment request form or the vendor invoice with the Accounts Payable approval stamp applied and completed.

    1. The Direct Payment Request form

      The Direct Payment Request form acts as a cover sheet presenting all the facts and information about the transaction needing payment. The form captures and provides the vendor remittance address, chartfields, business purpose or justification and approval information for Accounts Payable. All sections of the form must be completed.

      When reimbursing an individual, the original receipt from the merchant indicating what was purchased, the method of payment, and total amount paid must be attached. (A credit card statement or receipt not containing this information is not sufficient.)

      Employees seeking reimbursement will receive their payments faster by enrolling in direct deposit with Accounts Payable Employee Reimbursement Direct Deposit Authorization

    2. Accounts Payable Approval Stamps

      In an effort to promote sustainability, the Accounts Payable department will accept the use of a stamp directly on a standard vendor invoice. The invoice must be of a size and legibility so as to accommodate the stamp. (Typically 8 1/2 by 11 paper invoices.)

      The stamp should be applied to the face of the vendor invoice and be completed with the required information. (Dept. Ref #, amount, chartfields, printed requester name, requester signature, printed “approved by” name and signature.) The printed names must be legible.

      Additionally, the authorized “Approval Stamp” may be used for Purchase Order related invoices when confirming the receipt of goods or services and approval of the invoice for payment. Because approval for PO related transactions is granted at the time the PO is requested (and chartfields are specified on the PO), only a single approving authority name and signature is required at the time of invoice approval.

      An enlarged sample of the stamp is below

      Sample Stamp

  5. Forward the originals along with any supporting documents Accounts Payable FND 280 Mailstop #9901.


Direct Payment Request

How to Purchase and Pay


Subject Contact Phone Email
Guideline Contact Carol Monson (562) 985-8301
Subject Matter Expert Tammy Connors (562) 985-2697


Signature Authority

Delegation of Purchasing Authority

Related Chancellor’s Office Policies:

ICSUAM Direct Payment

Other Related Information:




Issue Date: October 1, 2010

Last Review Date: March 2018

Amended Date: March 2018