Skip to main content

Business Expenses

Cornell University funds may be used for ordinary, reasonable, and actual business-related expenses incurred in furtherance of the university's missions.

Policy details


Your local college or unit administrative office.

Violations of Finance Policy

Violation of a financial policy should be reported to your supervisor, your human resource representative, unit manager and/or the office responsible for the policy. Where these resources are inadequate, you may choose to make an anonymous report through the Cornell University Hotline.

Revision History:

4/27/2022: corrected links and/or updates of citations.

06/17/2021: Revisions to emphasize the prudent use of university funds.​

09/03/2020: Updated table of common federal unallowable expenses to add restrictions regarding telecommunication and video surveillance services or equipment.

01/09/2019: Changed "Vice President for Financial Affairs and University Treasurer" to "Executive Vice President and CFO" as Responsible Executive.

10/30/2018: Fixed two typographical errors.

10/29/2018: Edited Appendix on pages 23/24 for clarity. No substantive changes. 

04/06/2018: Updated procedures related to tax issues and updated other incidental information, including contacts.