Quick Reference Guide

The Procurement Card (P-Card) simplifies the purchasing of most goods and services under $5,000. The topics below provide basic guidelines and helpful information about the card.



More Information

Cardholder Responsibilities







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Cardholders who have the authority to use the P-Card must agree to comply with these

  • Keeping your card safe and secure
  • Obtain required documentation for each purchase.
  • Know and understand responsible buying practices, including the purchasing conduct and ethics.
  • Sole use by single cardholder only; card must not be shared or lent.
  • Know University policies and procedures regarding departmental P-Card purchasing authority.
  • Understanding terms and conditions of department funding sources.
  • Review and approve all transactions via U.S. Bank Access Online within 15 calendar days after statement end date.
  • Complete the appropriate forms for card maintenance and closing of account.

See P-Card Cardholder Responsibilities


Types of Purchases







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You can use your P-Card for most goods (under $5,000 per transaction), including but not limited to:

  • Advertisements
  • Books and dues
  • Conference Registrations (not lodging, airfare, or transportation)
  • Gift Card/Gift Certificate (non-cash negotiable, see G-41 & G-42 for additional restrictions) Subscriptions/publications
  • Computer accessories
  • Internet or online payment mechanisms such as PayPal (as long as payee can be identified)
  • Services (except for those services considered high risk and/or requiring a contract)
  • Supplies and tools
  • Training materials
  • Non-inventorial equipment (defined as equipment valued at less than $5,000)
See P-Card Overview

Purchasing Equipment





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Inventorial equipment CANNOT be purchased with the P-Card. At UCSF, inventorial equipment refers to items that:

  • Are non-expendable
  • Stand alone
  • Have a normal useful life of one year or more
  • Qualify as tangible personal property (can be appraised for value) with an acquisition cost greater than or equal to $5,000.

For details on ways to acquire Inventorial Equipment, contact the designated Campus Buyer assigned to your department for assistance.

See Capital Equipment & Accounting website for more information

Restricted Purchases









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The following items CANNOT be charged to the P-Card:

  • Services considered high risk or requiring a contract
  • Personal charges
  • Split purchases
  • Business travel expenditures and non-UCSF employees, students, and candidates
  • Parking
  • BearBuy catalog items, strategic systemwide agreements and UCSF campus contracts
  • Firearms, ammunition and/or explosives
  • Radioactive or other hazardous materials
  • Animals
  • Cash advances
  • Internet or online payment mechanisms such as PayPal that cannot identify the ultimate payee.
  • Purchases with large agreement vendors such as Fisher Scientific, VWR and Office Max, as other billing mechanisms are in place

See P-Card Purchases & Restrictions for more detailed list.

State and Federal Grants

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The P-Card CANNOT be used to purchase goods and services that are not otherwise allowable under the terms of your fund, including state and federal contracts and grants.

Consult your MSO or Department Reviewer/Approver if you have questions about departmental funds





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Cardholders are responsible for following up with a vendor regarding any erroneous charges, disputed items or missing credits on their statements.

Any disputed items must be reported to U.S. Bank immediately. The cardholder is responsible for these charges until the bank can identify these charges as fraudulent or unidentifiable.

If you fail to contact U.S. Bank Customer Service (800) 344-5696 within 60 days from the transaction posting date of the questionable transaction, the University may not be able to receive credit for the transaction & financial lost will incur at the department level.

See How to Dispute a Charge



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If you return an item to a vendor, the vendor should credit your P-Card. Credits are reconciled in U.S. Bank Access Online within 15 calendar days after statement end date in the same manner.

Forward all documentation regarding the credit to your Reviewer/Approver. Be sure to keep a copy for your files.

See How to Dispute a Charge

Lost or Stolen Cards

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Report your lost or stolen card to U.S. Bank immediately at (800) 344-5696. Cardholders account will be closed by U.S. Bank. Replacement cards will be mailed to the Card Program office. Cardholder will be contacted to pick up the reissued card in-person.

See How to Report a Lost or Stolen P-Card

Making a Purchase

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You can use your Procurement Card to purchase low-dollar supplies in person or by phone, fax or mail. You can also purchase items through a secure website. Cardholder should be aware of the dollar limit imposed on their card and balances available prior to making a purchase.

See How to Make a Purchase With a P-Card

Declined Cards







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A card may be declined if the vendor does not have the correct billing address. Be sure to provide your campus or office address exactly as it appears on the insert sleeve in which your card arrives.

Your card may also be declined if the:

  • Purchase amount exceeds the low-value limit (monthly, daily and single limit)
  • Supplier is restricted
  • Card is inactive and closed
  • Account number is expired or transposed during the sales transaction
  • US Bank has imposed a strategy for high risk vendors (this requires the cardholder call US Bank to receive authorization before the purchase goes through)

If you need assistance with a declined card, contact U.S. Bank Customer Service at (800) 344-5696 or the UCSF Card Program Administrator at creditcard@ucsf.edu


Shipping Purchases


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If your purchase is being shipped to the Receiving Department, request that the vendor use the receiver’s street address (For example see below):

University of California San Francisco
Attn: <Cardholder Name/Department>
Ship to address
City, state and zip code

See How to Make a Purchase With a P-Card


Contact Us

  • To report lost or stolen cards and disputes contact U.S. Bank Customer Service at (800) 344-5696.
  • For all other questions, contact the Card Program Services at creditcard@ucsf.edu.