Resolving Purchasing Issues

LAST UPDATED: February 26, 2018

What You Should Know

Problems with purchasing normally occur after the purchase. Of course, the best way to avoid problems is to ensure that there are no mistakes made in ordering. But if you experience a problem during the order process or at delivery, contact the supplier to seek resolution. If your issue isn’t solved this way, contact the buyer responsible for the commodity in Procurement Services for help.

Damaged or Missing Merchandise

If you receive a delivery that is damaged, missing items, or is of unacceptable quality, note these on the packing slip and bring it to the attention of the supplier as soon as possible so the supplier may rectify the situation. Until the order is corrected, do not confirm receipt of the order in Prime Financials.

Returns, Exchanges & Refunds

If you need to return or exchange an item, contact the supplier’s customer service department.

  • Information for orders placed through Prime Financials
  • For return of items purchased with a University Credit Card, consult your records for the supplier's contact information and follow the supplier’s return instructions.

Notes About Returns, Exchanges & Refunds

  • Contact the supplier to receive a return authorization number.
  • Some suppliers charge a restocking fee of as much as 20% (even more for furniture purchases).
  • You may be responsible for the return shipping charges.
  • Normally, suppliers only accept returns within 15 or 30 days of your receipt of the product.
  • Certain items (radioactive materials, chemicals, refrigerated or frozen products) may not be returnable.
  • For software licensing, you may be required to fill out and sign a form guaranteeing that you will not use the product.
  • In some cases, a box that has been opened, and can therefore no longer be sold as a new product, will not be returnable.

Shipping Return Items

In most cases, you will be expected to pay for any return shipping charges. Exceptions are:

  • If the return is due to a supplier error.
  • If the supplier has their own delivery service.

Lost or Undelivered Shipments

Contact the vendor if you do not receive a shipment so the supplier can track the package and ensure that you receive your order.

What to do if Sales Tax was Charged

Contact the supplier, explain that Princeton University is tax-exempt, and ask for a credit to be applied to your invoice.

For more information



Tel (609) 258-3080
Fax (609) 258-0442

Princeton University
Office of Finance & Treasury
701 Carnegie Center
Princeton, NJ 08540

Google Map
Princeton Shuttle


7 New South
Tel (609) 258-3080
Fax (609) 258-5040
Open Monday through Friday,
8:45 am — 5:00 pm


Customer service, cashiering,
check pick-up, financial system access


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