Policy 92 - Financial Fraud

Approved Board of Governors 2012.52

FINANCIAL FRAUD

INTRODUCTION

1. The University maintains sound planning and management of its financial resources based on key principles such as accountability, integrity and honesty. This Policy is intended to be used should a rare case of financial fraud arise.

PURPOSE

2. The purpose of this Policy is to provide University employees with a means to report concerns about known or suspected financial fraud and to establish a prompt and fair investigation process to deal with allegations of financial fraud.

SCOPE

3. This Policy applies to all individuals who wish to report a known or suspected financial fraud case. Applicable provisions in collective agreements take precedence over this Policy.

DEFINITION OF FINANCIAL FRAUD

4. Financial fraud is any act, irregularity, misconduct or activity of a financial nature that is dishonest, improper or illegal and that affects the integrity of the University’s activities or deprives the University of a financial benefit. Financial fraud includes the following:

a) theft, misappropriation, destruction, unauthorized use, suppression or concealment of funds or of University property where a financial impact is involved;

b) forgery, falsification, alteration, destruction or fabrication of any paper or electronic financially related record (for example, cheques, grant applications, time sheets, contracts, requisitions, budgets, accounting records);

c) making false financial claims and statements, including authorizing or receiving payment for hours not worked;

d) inappropriate use of computer systems where a financial impact is involved, including unauthorized access and software piracy;

e) corruption, giving or receiving discounts or rebates without University approval, authorizing or receiving payments for goods not delivered or services not performed;

f) non-compliance with the financial provisions of University policy, procedure or practice or with any law.

POLICY

5. The University is committed to maintaining the highest standards of honesty, integrity and transparency in its financial activities and to protecting against financial fraud. The University is responsible for establishing internal controls and procedures to prevent financial fraud and to protect the resources it is entrusted with.

6. The University will not tolerate financial fraud. University employees who engage in financial fraud may be subject to disciplinary action and may face criminal prosecution or civil suits.

REPORTING FINANCIAL FRAUD

7. An anonymous report of financial fraud presents difficulties at the investigation stage given that the unknown source is unavailable to provide information or substantiate the allegations. Consequently, a report of financial fraud cannot be made anonymously.

8. Confidentiality of the identity of the University employee reporting the financial fraud is maintained unless disclosure is required in order to investigate the matter fully or unless required by law.

9. University employees who identify themselves and make a report in good faith of a known or suspected financial fraud will not be subject to reprisal for reporting.

WHERE TO REPORT

10. University employees are urged to report known or suspected financial fraud,

a) in accordance with the relevant provisions of an applicable collective agreement, or

b) to his or her supervisor or to the supervisor of the individual who is the subject of the allegation.

11. If reporting to a supervisor is either unavailable or inappropriate and where there is no relevant provision in an applicable collective agreement, the University employee should report the matter to the Vice-President, Governance. Where the circumstances involve the Vice-President, Governance, the financial fraud should be reported the President. If the circumstances of financial fraud cannot be reported to the President because it is alleged that the President is involved, the matter should be reported to the Chair of the Board of Governors.

INVESTIGATION

12. The investigation into a report of financial fraud will proceed as set out in paragraphs 13 to 17 of this Policy. Where an applicable collective agreement provides for an investigation process, the investigation will proceed in accordance with the collective agreement investigation provisions and paragraphs 13 to 17 of this Policy do not apply.

13. The recipient of the report of a known or suspected financial fraud must notify the Vice-President, Governance, who will cause an investigation into the allegations of financial fraud in a manner suitable in the circumstances, including access to relevant information and documentation, and as expeditiously as possible under the circumstances.

14. The party conducting the investigation must write a draft investigation report. The draft investigation report is submitted to the person or persons under investigation for comment before the investigation report is finalized. The final investigation report is submitted to the Vice-President, Governance.

15. If the investigation concludes that the allegations of financial fraud are substantiated, the Vice-President, Governance, will send the final investigation report to the Administrative Committee for a decision. Prior to making a decision, the individual or individuals under investigation will have ten (10) working days from the date the investigation report was sent to provide the Administrative Committee with additional written comments, if any, on the conclusions and recommendations contained in the final investigation report.

16. Upon receiving and considering the investigation report and comments, if any, from those involved, the Administrative Committee decides on whether or not to uphold the conclusions contained in the investigation report, on disciplinary action, which may include dismissal and on any other corrective measures or action plans appropriate in the circumstances.

17. The Office of the Vice-President, Governance, will communicate the Administrative Committee’s decision to the person or persons under investigation. The Office of Vice-President, Governance, will inform the University employee who made the report of financial fraud whether the allegations of financial fraud were substantiated or not to and inform on the outcome where permitted having regard to confidentiality considerations.

CONFIDENTIALITY

18. All individuals involved in a report or in an investigation of financial fraud must keep the matter confidential in order to safeguard individuals against unsubstantiated allegations, protect the rights of those involved in an allegation of financial fraud and preserve the integrity of the investigation.

19. The details of an investigation, analysis of the facts, allegations and conclusions will be disclosed only to those persons who need this information for the investigation, for the implementation of the decision or unless otherwise required by an applicable collective agreement, this Policy or by law.

LAW ENFORCEMENT

20. The University may take measures to recover any losses resulting from the financial fraud and may refer a report of financial fraud to the Police or other law enforcement agency.

POLICY REVIEW

21. The Vice-President, Governance, is responsible for the establishment and review of this Policy and amendments to it may be made with the approval of the Administrative Committee.

Revised October 29, 2012

(Office of the Vice-President, Governance)

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