NOTICE: The Finance Policies and Procedures Manual, along with the previous manual, is undergoing changes. These sites are continually updated to reflect changes in business processes. If you cannot find the information you are seeking in these policies, email for more information.
Policies and Procedures

Procedure 1252.1 – Obtaining a Purchasing Card

January 1, 2000
Last Updated
January 9, 2018
Last Reviewed
December 14, 2017
Responsible University Officer
Director of Purchasing Services
Responsible Unit
Purchasing Services

Procedure Statement

In order to obtain a University Purchasing Card (P-Card), several forms must be completed. A P-Card is issued after the necessary forms are approved and the cardholder has completed the online training and passed a test. Cardholders must sign an agreement before the P-Card can be issued.

Reason for Policy

Accounting Services or the Budget Office will approve the requested default Chartfield per the application. The individual will then be required to complete a mandatory online training session covering the use of the card and all applicable restrictions. The card will be picked up once the training quiz (at the end of online training presentation) has been passed. The card will only be given directly to the cardholder.  Other individuals are not permitted to pick up cards on behalf of cardholders.

Departmental restrictions may be added to an individual card as follows:

Limit dollar amount per purchase (single transaction limit)

Limit dollar amount per billing cycle (monthly transaction limit)

Note: The recommended default limit for each of these is $5,000; however, any (lower) amount can be used to meet department requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How long does it take to get a P-Card?

A. It takes approximately 10 business days to acquire one. However, the card will not be given to the cardholder until the mandatory training is successfully completed.

Q. Does my P-Card application need to be approved?

A. Yes, your P-Card application is sent to Accounting Services or Budget Office for default Chartfield approval.

Q: Can a grant account be a P-Card default account?

A. No, you must use a departmental overhead account or trust account.

Forms and Instructions

  • Each card applicant and reconciler must complete the Systems Access Request process, which grants access to ConnectCarolina.
  • The department must then submit a P-Card Application form for each card requested. The application form must be signed by the cardholder requesting the card and the department business manager.

1252.1.1f – P-Card Application Form

1252.1.2f – P-Card Cardholder Account Maintenance Form

1252.1.3f – Purchasing Card Warning Violation Form

Related Data

Systems Access Request


January 9, 2018 - replaced 'account' terminology with "Chartfield" and added the fact that only the cardholder can pick up his or her P-Card.
September 18, 2017 - Replaced Purchasing Card Application to correct errors in the application form.
January 30, 2013