Terms and conditions - May 2020 to April 2021

Terms and conditions – uOttawa Card Service - May 2020 to April 2021

The uOttawa card and the Discover uOttawa card, where applicable, (collectively referred to as the “uOttawa card”) are governed by these terms and conditions and the University of Ottawa’s policies, procedures and regulations, as may be amended from time to time. Read the terms and conditions carefully: they constitute legal obligations between you and the University of Ottawa (the “University”). The use of the words “YOU" and "YOUR" denote the person named on the uOttawa card or, in the case of the Discovery uOttawa card, the person to whom the card is issued. 

By obtaining a uOttawa card, depositing funds into your uOttawa card accounts or by using uOttawa card services, you agree to and accept all of these terms and conditions. The terms and conditions are subject to change from time to time and without notice. Future changes will become effective and will apply to all uOttawa cards in circulation at the time we post the amended terms and conditions on our website and will supersede the previous terms and conditions in effect at the time you acquired your uOttawa card. Be sure to review the terms and conditions regularly.

1. Use and ownership

The uOttawa card and the photo are the property of the University of Ottawa. They are used by University faculties, services and staff to identify you as a University of Ottawa student and provide you with access to various services. You must present your uOttawa card upon request by the University or its service providers. The uOttawa card is entrusted to you to allow you to access the multitude of services available to you with the card. See Using your card.

You are the only person entitled to use your card. The uOttawa card is non-transferable. You may not use your uOttawa card for any illegal, improper or unlawful purpose, such as presenting your uOttawa card as evidence of being a student at the University while not registered as a student. Using another student’s uOttawa card, or altering, falsifying or selling a uOttawa card, is prohibited and subject to sanctions, pursuant to the University’s regulations, policies and procedures (for example, the Policy on Academic Fraud), and may also be subject to civil or criminal proceedings.

You may use your uOttawa card for purchases where accepted by uOttawa service providers, provided funds are available in your account. The purchase of alcohol, cigarettes, gift cards or lottery tickets is prohibited. The uOttawa card does not provide credit. Cash-back transactions are not permitted. The University reserves the right to deduct any outstanding balance on your student account from any refund of uOttawa card funds you may receive (see section 9, refunds).

The uOttawa Card may contain different types of accounts.  Accounts are made available depending on the services to which you are granted access.  For further information on which accounts your card gives you access to, contact the uOttawa Card Service.

You are responsible for all use of your uOttawa card, including debits made as a result of misuse of your uOttawa card. If you would like to dispute any purchases made using your uOttawa card, you must first try to settle the dispute directly with the service provider. In some circumstances, the University may be able to provide assistance in resolving disputed or declined transactions (see section 5).

2. Security

You are responsible for safeguarding your uOttawa card against loss or theft, for maintaining it in proper working condition, and for keeping your online account password, or PIN, confidential. The University will never ask you to divulge any of your access information. If you suspect another person knows your PIN, or password, go to uoZone or call the help line at 613-562-5800 extension 6555 and change your access information immediately.

3. Lost or stolen uOttawa cards

If your uOttawa card is lost or stolen, you must immediately deactivate it. You can do so online, in person or by calling the uOttawa Card Service at 613-562-5893. An email or voice message does not constitute proper notification of a lost or stolen card. A replacement fee of $25 (tax included) is charged for all replacement uOttawa cards. Your account will be reactivated only after the replacement fee is paid, your student status has been verified, and a new uOttawa card has been issued.

You are responsible for all transactions made on your card until you deactivate it. The University is not responsible for funds or services obtained using a lost or stolen card.  In the event that the online service to deactivate your card is unavailable, the University is not responsible for transactions on your uOttawa card.  You will not be responsible for unauthorized use, which means transactions occurring after you deactivate your uOttawa card. Once a replacement uOttawa card has been issued, your remaining cash balance will be transferred to your new uOttawa card. After a uOttawa card is deactivated, it can only be reactivated at the uOttawa Card Service with proof of identification, and only if a replacement card has not been issued. Once a new uOttawa card is issued, any previous uOttawa cards are permanently deactivated.

If your uOttawa card is found and returned to the University, the uOttawa Card Service will contact you through your uOttawa email account.

4. Expired uOttawa cards

All uOttawa cards expire five years from the date of issue. Expiry dates appear on the back of the uOttawa card. If you continue to attend the University of Ottawa beyond the expiry period, you must obtain a new card (at no cost). Access to many services on campus is tied to your student status. If you are not registered as a student for a given period within the five years, some services may not be available to you.

To obtain a new card, you must go to the uOttawa Card Service or InfoService.  A valid piece of government-issued ID is required to obtain a new uOttawa card. If you stop attending the University but return before your uOttawa card has expired, you will not need a new card. When you receive a replacement uOttawa card, you can have a new picture taken or keep the existing photo if it is less than five years old AND your appearance has not changed significantly.

5. Preferred name and photo on uOttawa Cards

Students who decide to add a preferred name to their uOttawa personal information (uoCampus) will have their preferred name printed on their uOttawa Card.  Your preferred name will also appear on professors class lists.  Students who add a preferred name, after receiving their initial uOttawa card will be required to replace their uOttawa Card. 

Students whose appearance changes and there printed photo no longer resembles their appearance may submit a request to obtain a replacement card to the uOttawa Card Service.  The uOttawa Card Service will consider the request and issue a replacement card at their discretion.

6. Charge disputes

If you are not able to successfully resolve a purchase disagreement with a service provider and you wish to dispute the charge deducted from your uOttawa card account, you must notify the uOttawa Card Service in person or by email within 30 calendar days of the date of the charge. You must provide your name, student number, the date, location and amount of the transaction, along with any other information that may help staff resolve your claim. Disputing a charge does not necessarily guarantee that the disputed charge will be credited to your uOttawa card account. Charge disputes are dealt with on a case-by-case basis.

7. Currency

All uOttawa card account funds are in Canadian dollars. Cash deposits or certified cheques and money orders deposited in your card account at the uOttawa Card Service must be in Canadian funds. The intended amount of deposits made using a debit or credit card outside Canada may not be equivalent to the amount actually deposited due to currency exchange rates.

8. Refusal to accept or honour a uOttawa card as payment

The University is not responsible for refusal by a uOttawa card service provider to accept or honour your uOttawa card for whatever reason, including the following:

  • There are insufficient funds in your account at the time of the purchase
  • Equipment normally used to process the transaction is not functioning
  • Your account is temporarily suspended or cancelled
  • Your card is, or has been, reported lost or stolen
  • Your card is damaged.

9. Refunds

Subject to these terms and conditions and with the exception of section 15 relating to meal plans, the uOttawa Card Service will provide a refund upon receipt of a completed refund form, preferably submitted in person or by email. A cardholder is entitled to one refund request per term and the University reserves the right to deny a refund to a cardholder who continuously submits refund requests. Refunds are subject to the restrictions applicable on those accounts. Balances on the Discover uOttawa card cannot be redeemed and are non-refundable. Block plans are non-refundable, non-transferable and not interchangeable. Refunds on your uOttawa card account are subject to the restrictions applicable to each account. Funds in your Flex account are non-transferable. Refunds are made to the cardholder and cannot be made to anyone else. Refunds may be reduced by the amount of any Harmonized Sales Tax (HST), any other applicable taxes and any discount offered by a service provider through your account. A $25 administration fee will be deducted from the uOttawa card account balance prior to any refund being issued. The University reserves the right to deduct any outstanding balance on your student account from your refund. All refunds are issued by direct deposit or by cheque and mailed to the address provided on the refund form. Refund cheques are processed and may take up to 15 business days before they are received.  For meal plan refunds, see section 15.

Promotional account/funds

There may be circumstances where you are provided with a promotional account or promotional funds for purchases with your uOttawa card. Funds in promotional accounts or funds received as a result of a contest or draw are non-refundable and non-transferable and are subject to expiry as determined by the uOttawa Card Service.

10. Residual fund

Flex account

If your uOttawa card remains inactive for a period of six years following last flex account transaction, all funds remaining on your uOttawa card accounts will become property of the University and will no longer be available to you.

Discover uOttawa card

If your Discover uOttawa card remains inactive for a period of two years, all funds remaining on your Discover uOttawa card account will become property of the University and will no longer be available to you.

11. Confiscation of uOttawa cards

Any University employee or uOttawa card service provider may confiscate your uOttawa card if you use it fraudulently, without authorization or for improper purposes. Once a uOttawa card is confiscated, it is sent to the uOttawa Card Service. Decisions on sanctions, if required, are made on a case-by-case basis. If your card is confiscated, you will be required to use another payment method to complete a transaction.  You may be denied services until your card is returned to you.

12. Offline transactions

If the uOttawa card transaction reader is operating in offline mode, a limited number of transactions may be accepted. In such cases, transactions will be processed on your uOttawa card account once the reader is back online. You are responsible for all transactions made while the transaction reader is offline. If the declining balance on your card goes into a negative balance, you must bring the balance to zero by reloading your uOttawa card before you can use the card again.

13. Collection and use of your personal information

Your personal information is collected by the University under the authority of the University of Ottawa Act, 1965, and is subject to the University’s Policy 90, Access to Information and Privacy Policy.  Without limiting the general interpretation of the University’s Policy 90, your personal information is intended to be used to verify your identity, to operate your uOttawa card through payment card networks and for the purpose of and those consistent with providing the services associated with the uOttawa card, administering University programs and activities and carrying out other University services and functions.

Your digital photograph will be printed on the face of your uOttawa card and will be stored in the University database. All photos used for the uOttawa card, including those submitted by you, are University of Ottawa property and may be shared with University faculties, services, staff and uOttawa card service providers to identify you as a student at the University of Ottawa. Your uOttawa card transaction information may be shared with financial institutions, credit card companies and payment processors associated with uOttawa Card transactions in connection with detecting, investigating and preventing fraudulent uOttawa card transactions and in connection with risk management and security purposes or with confirming deposits onto your uOttawa card.

Questions regarding the collection and use of your personal information for the uOttawa card should be addressed to the uOttawa Card Service. Questions of a general nature regarding the collection, use or disclosure of information by the University should be addressed to the University’s access and privacy coordinator. You may send an email to the Access to Information and Privacy Office, call 613-562-5800 ext. 1851, or write to the University of Ottawa Access to Information and Privacy Office, 550 Cumberland Street, Room M407, Ottawa, ON  K1N 6N5. (http://www.uottawa.ca/aipo/)

14. Limitations on the University’s liability and indemnity

The University is not liable to you for any loss, inconvenience to you or to others, or any damages (including special, indirect or consequential) or expenses of any kind that may result from the use or misuse of the uOttawa card, or if, for whatever reason, your uOttawa card is not accepted or you do not have sufficient funds in your account. You agree to indemnify, hold harmless and release the University of Ottawa from any and all claims for losses, damages, injury, fees, expenses, charges or debts made by any party against the University arising out of the use or misuse of the uOttawa card, including any meal plan claims related to tax benefits and tax savings.

15. Meal plans

Meal plans are governed by Canada Revenue Agency requirements, with which the University must comply. The University provides a variety of meal plans for residents and non-residents.  Meal plans are meant for food that has been prepared on campus.  The list below contains examples of items (subject to change) that cannot be purchased with a meal plan:

  • Non-food purchases (books, clothing, printing services, etc.);
  • Candy, gum, chocolate, chips;
  • Canned pop, popsicles; pre-packaged ice cream;
  • Canned goods, pre-packaged groceries;
  • All foods sold in a convenience store or in a vending machine.

Meal plans are valid for the period for which they were purchased.  Service providers are responsible for complying with meal plan rules and regulations, and are responsible for managing the operations of their respective establishments.  Meal plan services and hours of operation may vary, depending on each service location and each service provider.  There are several meal plans available; including meal plans valid for only one term. Check the Meal Plan webpage for the dates in which meal plans are valid and to determine the plan that best suits your needs.

There is no guarantee that a given meal plan will fulfill your meal requirements for the term or academic year. You are responsible for budgeting for your daily food purchases and managing your personal account. Funds can be added to your meal plan, in person or online, at any time before it expires.

Use of your uOttawa card

Once your meal plan has been purchased (online or in person), funds are available on your uOttawa card.

Students who request a meal plan along with their residence application (whether the meal plan is mandatory or optional) for an upcoming academic year will have their meal plan added onto their uOttawa card a few days prior to the beginning of the term.  Students who move into residence during the academic year will have their meal plan activated only after Housing Services has informed the uOttawa Card Service.

The uOttawa card is the sole method of payment accepted for meals purchased under a meal plan. If you do not present your uOttawa card to pay for your purchase, you must use another form of payment. If you forget, lose, damage, deactivate your uOttawa card, or if your uOttawa card is defective or has been confiscated, you will be required to use another payment method until you obtain a replacement uOttawa card from InfoService or the uOttawa Card Service. A replacement fee of $25 applies. All meal purchases are final once a transaction has been approved. If you do not use your uOttawa card to purchase a meal and you use another payment method, the amount of the payment cannot be applied to your meal plan.


Mandatory meal plans

If you are registered as a first-year student living at 90 University, Stanton, Marchand, Leblanc or Thompson residences, you must purchase the 5 day meal plan (the mandatory five-day meal plan that covers from 4 a.m. Monday  to  23:59 p.m. Friday).  The mandatory meal plan is charged to your student account and is non-refundable, non-transferable and non-interchangeable – see also section 14.6.  

If you have not paid the mandatory meal plan portion of your student account within 3 weeks of the beginning of the meal plan term, you may be denied access to the 24/7 All-you-care-to-eat dining hall until you have paid the mandatory meal plan in full.  You will not receive any refund, compensation, or any extension or additional access to the dining hall to compensate for the period during which you were denied access to the 24/7 All-you-care-to-eat dining hall - see also section 14.6.


5 day and 7 day meal plans

Students who have the 5 day or 7 day meal plans have unlimited access to the 24/7 all-you-care-to-eat dining hall.   Meal plan holders must eat inside the dining hall and are not permitted to take any food out of the dining hall.  The funds earmarked for the unlimited 24/7 all-you-care-to-eat dining hall are non-refundable, non-interchangeable and non-transferrable.

Student who have the 5 day or 7 day meal plans have access to the Dining dollar account, a tax-exempt account that can only be used to purchase food prepared on campus.  Once the meal plan expires, and funds remaining in the Dining dollar account will be transferred to the Flex account.  All transfers will incur an administration fee of $25. 

Pay-as-you-go meal plan

Includes both the Dining dollar account and the Flex dollar account.  Funds earmarked in the Dining dollar account are tax exempt and can only be used to purchase food prepared on campus.  Once this meal plan expires, remaining funds in the Dining dollar account will be transferred to your Flex account.  All transfers will incur an administration fee of $25. 


Dining Hall and campus food facilities rules

In addition to the conditions specified in these Terms and Conditions, Meal plan holders  must comply with Food Services’ general rules, regulations or directives on the Dining hall and with any other measures or rules in place at the Dining Hall or other food facilities located on campus.  Individuals who fail to comply with Food Services general rules, regulations or directives or such other campus food facility measures or rules that apply to entry to and use of the Dining hall, may be denied entry or could be asked to leave.  Depending on the severity of the circumstances, such individuals may be subject to further measures or loss of privileges. 

Pre-ordered takeout meal - food safety

Pre-ordered meals permitted for takeout should be consumed within 2 hours of receiving or should be refrigerated (4C/40F) as soon as possible for later consumption within 24 hours.  If the pre-ordered meal is a hot meal refrigerated to eat at a later time, it should be reheated to 74C/165F before eating. 

Unless otherwise provided for in these Terms and Conditions, all meal plans are non-refundable, non-transferable and not interchangeable.  Please see section 16 for block plans.  Meal plan holders are not entitled to full or partial refunds for service outages (periods during which the Dining hall or any other dining facility was closed) that are beyond the University’s control or that is closed at the University’s discretion.  You may be eligible for a refund of any unused balance less an administration fee of $25 in the following circumstances:

a) If you officially withdraw from the University or you are expelled by the University AND you submit a meal plan cancellation or refund request to the uOttawa Card Service along with proof of withdrawal (e.g. statement of studies) issued by the University’s Office of the Registrar.

b) If you have a mandatory meal plan and move out of the residence you were assigned.  Students who move out of a residence with mandatory meal plan have the option to keep their meal plan for the remainder of the validity of the meal plan or receive a cancellation or refund of the remaining balance (pro rata).  The cancellation or refund is only made once the uOttawa Card Service receives confirmation from the Housing Service that you have in fact moved out and the calculation will be based on all completed documentation.  If you move into another residence that has a mandatory meal plan, you will be required to keep the meal plan that was applied to your uOttawa Card.   

c) Under certain medical conditions.  Cancellations or refunds for medical reasons are only processed once the student has met with the University dietician and for which a student has presented documentation as directed by the dietician. In such cases, the uOttawa Card Service will only proceed with a meal plan cancellation or refund once the Service has been notified by the campus dietician.

d) For any other reason, you may submit a meal plan cancellation or refund request to the uOttawa Card Service before the end of the trial period.

The uOttawa Card Service will provide a cancellation or refund only upon the receipt of fully completed documentation.  Simply withdrawing from, or leaving, the University will not initiate the meal plan refund process.

16. Block plans

Students who choose any of the Block plans also have access to the All-you-care-to-eat dining hall.  Block plans permit a limited number of entries into the dining hall.  Block plans do not provide any tax savings.  Block plans are valid for one term only and are non-refundable, non-transferable and not interchangeable.  Dining hall users must comply with Food Services’ general rules, regulations or directives on the Dining hall

17.  Flex dollars

You can use your Flex account wherever the uOttawa Card is accepted on campus; it can be used to pay for printing, copying, buying books, library late fees, food and much more

These terms and conditions are governed by the laws of the Province of Ontario and where applicable in Canada.  If you have any questions about the uOttawa card or the services that can be accessed using the card, please contact the uOttawa Card Service.

Last revised:  December 2019

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