Annually, the University of Colorado is required to report to the State of Colorado, and to our independent auditors, to certify the accuracy and completeness of our financial statements and the effectiveness and sufficiency of our internal control structure. 

Because of our size and decentralized structure, it is necessary to survey certain populations across the university to validate our fiscal practices and procedures. The mandatory fiscal certification and assessment process is designed to gather that information. Each year, employees from your campus and from system administration will work to identify a representative population to provide that valuable input.

If you have been identified as part of this mandatory population, you are required to complete either the fiscal assessment or the fiscal certification by the due date established by your officer at the beginning of the process.

On this page:

Training & Information

The CU Fiscal Certification is a Two-step Process:

1. Fiscal Assessment

The Fiscal Assessment is assigned to individuals who have significant fiscal roles and responsibilities. Generally, these individuals have direct oversight of fiscal activities for their respective programs, projects, or work areas (e.g., chairs, directors, department administrators, or principal investigators). Completion of the Fiscal Assessment is required for the assigned population. A voluntary version of this assessment is also available to all employees regardless of their position or level of fiscal responsibility.

2. Fiscal Certification

The Fiscal Certification is a separate statement assigned to officers or individuals with equivalent responsibility. It is a high-level overview of the university’s fiscal practices and must be completed annually by all officers of the university.

Voluntary Fiscal Assessment

Other university personnel who are not required to complete an assessment can complete a voluntary fiscal assess­ment. Comments submitted via the voluntary fiscal assessment are sent directly to the University Controller and will remain anonymous if that option is selected.


Yes. We require a Fiscal Certification when a Principal Investigator has:

  1. actual expenses of $2 million or more during the fiscal year in question; or 
  2. a combined program or project budget of $2 million or more. 

The sum for combined budget can include the rollover of any budget balances from prior-year projects that were active during the fiscal year in question.

Yes. We collect information about activity in the previous fiscal year, which runs from July 1 (previous calendar year) until June 30 (current calendar year). If you held a qualifying position for most of that time, you must complete the mandatory certification or assessment. 

If you held a qualifying position for less than 6 months of the fiscal year in question, and you believe that completing a Fiscal Certification or Assessment would be inappropriate for you, please contact the Campus Controller’s Fiscal Compliance team for guidance or clarification. Please include documentation evidencing your reduced period of commitment.

Yes. All university officers must complete the Fiscal Certification, regardless of their projected budget or actual expenditures. View a list of current university officers here

Other employees may be asked to complete a mandatory Fiscal Certification if they hold critical fiscal roles in their organizational units or work centers. Critical fiscal roles are defined by the scope and character of responsibility, rather than the size of budgets or expenditures. 

Yes. The Fiscal Certification is mandatory for all designated employees. Sabbaticals or university travel are not usually grounds for an exception. 

Please consult with the Campus Controller’s Fiscal Compliance team if you need special consideration or accommodations as a result of long-term emergencies or medical absences. 

No. The Fiscal Certification is mandatory for designated individuals, and its completion may not be delegated. 

However, certain administrative aspects of the fiscal certification process may be delegated. A delegate can review direct and indirect rollups in an officer’s population; set due dates for direct rollups; and monitor Fiscal Certification and Fiscal Assessment completions for direct and indirect rollups in the officer’s population. Please review the guidance on assigning delegates, acting as a delegate, and setting due dates

Once the Fiscal Certification process has begun, the certifying population has undergone 3 or more distinct levels of review. 

However, if you believe an individual does not meet the certification requirements and has been designated in error, or if an individual’s employment is terminated, please request an exception to the Campus Controller’s Fiscal Compliance team. Please include the following details in your request:

  1. Employee name 
  2. Employee number 
  3. Explanation why the individual does not qualify 
  4. Supporting documentation, where relevant 

Exceptions will only be granted if the designated individual:

  1. is not an active employee when the exception is requested; or 
  2. is a principal investigator who did not have:
    1. actual expenses of $2 million or more during the fiscal year in question; nor 
    2. a combined program or project budget of $2 million or more; or 
  3. is not a university officer; or
  4. did not hold a critical fiscal role in their organization. 

​All exceptions requests must be received at least 2 weeks prior to the Fiscal Certification due date for that individual. Documents supporting exceptions will be maintained by the university in the event of an external audit.  

After July 1, if you believe an individual should be added to the population, or a roll-up officer should be changed, contact the Campus Controller’s Fiscal Compliance team.

If you are an officer, you can access your Fiscal Certification home page to view the completion status of your rollup population. This can be done by logging in to your campus portal; clicking on the “CU Resources Home” drop-down menu; selecting “Business Tools”; then, clicking on the Fiscal Certification and Assessment tile. 

If you are a delegate for an officer, you will be able to view the officer’s Fiscal Certification home page when you log in to your campus portal and follow the instructions listed above. Through this page, you can set due dates and monitor completion statuses for direct rollups in your officer’s population. 

For additional information, please review the guidance on assigning delegates and acting as a delegate