The contract payment process begins with the receipt of a contractor's invoice. Ministries work with the finance group within the applicable business area to complete contract payments.
When an invoice is received, ensure that it contains sufficient detail to be linked to a specific contract. This will include information that is usually outlined in the payment schedule of the contract (e.g. Schedule B of the General Services Agreement). Other forms of contract may contain this information in other sections. Contractors are encouraged to use numbered invoices, for ease of reference. Invoice amounts are stated in Canadian dollars, unless the contract specifically allows for a different currency.
The invoice should at a minimum contain:
- The name and address of the contractor;
- The date of the invoice;
- A description of the works/services provided;
- The rate of pay (by the hour, day, etc.), or the applicable deliverable / milestone met;
- The dates and/or hours being charged; and
- The contract number.
Once an invoice is received, it should be date stamped (often by the accounts payable department). The contract manager or the qualified receiver is responsible for verifying that the individual deliverables or services were delivered as described, and that unit costs match the contract payment schedule. The contract manager is also responsible for verifying that the total payment for each deliverable or service, and the total contract payment to date (this invoice combined with all previous invoices) does not exceed the maximum value of the contract.
Section 6.3.6.b.1 of the Core Policy and Procedures Manual (CPPM) states that ministries must keep and maintain a Contract Summary (PDF, 113KB) record for all service contracts. Statements of accounts must include a calculation of fees (plus applicable taxes) and expenses.
If travel expenses apply to the contract, check that copies of the receipts are attached to the invoice for those being claimed (refer to section 10.3.15 of the CPPM). The contract should identify which group rates apply to the expenses, and any expense claims made must be consistent. The Group rates for contractors are as per the links below:
- Appendix 1 - Group 1 Rates - Expenses for Contractors
- Appendix 1 - Group 2 Rates - Expenses for Contractors
Note: Adequate controls in the ministry must be in place to prevent duplicate payments.
Ministries usually pay invoices within 30 days of receipt. Under many of the Province’s standard forms of contract, and under the regulations issued pursuant to the Financial Administration Act, where applicable, interest is not payable until after 60 days. However, this provision in the regulations can be modified by contract, and it is important to confirm the actual terms of payment as set out in the contract itself. Often, where a vendor form of contract has been used, the Province’s standard payment terms will not apply.
Ministries usually pay invoices within 30 days of receipt, but interest is not payable until after 60 days. If an invoice requires corrections by the contractor, the timeframe begins once the corrected and acceptable invoice is received. The Ministry of Finance provides the most up to date information about payment processes and timelines. This includes policy and guidance on contracts without invoices, liens, set-offs, cost overruns, treatment of tax, and payments to organizations outside of Canada.