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Policy on Honorarium Payments

Policy Statement

An honorarium payment is typically a modest payment made on a special or nonroutine basis to an individual who is not an employee or student of the university, to acknowledge the contribution of gratuitous services to the university. Examples would be a payment to a non-professional guest speaker or lecturer as a gesture of goodwill or appreciation, or a token payment for other unique, incidental and infrequent services not traditionally required on an on-going basis. Honorarium payments are to be made to U.S. Citizens only. Honorarium payments are made payable to the individual who provided the gratuitous services. Therefore, as a matter of policy, the recipient of an honorarium payment may not transfer the payment to another organization of individual, he or she must receive the money and donate it. The university does not make charitable contributions to organizations in lieu of an honorarium payment.

Reason for the Policy

To govern university honoraria payments and ensure compliance with the guidance of the Internal Revenue Service.

Policy Category

Administrative Policy.


Honorarium payments are to be processed with a request for payment form (see Controller’s Office website), signed by the Department Head for which the funds are being charged (using Banner code 74510 -Honoraria) and submitted to Accounts Payable. Provide all available details for the honorarium payment including a copy of the flyer or memo describing the event if applicable.

Honorarium payments to U.S. Citizens are taxable income and must be reported on Form 1099 if cumulative payments to a recipient in a calendar year are $600 or more. A completed Form W-9 must be obtained from the guest and submitted to Accounts Payable by the Requisitioner with the request for payment form.

Who is Governed by this Policy?

This policy governs the payment of honoraria. All university personnel who process honoraria payments or who manage employees who process these payments are governed by this policy.


Violation of university policies, including the failure to avoid a prohibited activity or obtain required approvals, will be dealt with in accordance with applicable 2 university policies and procedures. These may include disciplinary actions up to and including termination from the university.

Responsible Administrators

Vice President for Finance

Policy last updated February 2018.