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Wire Transfers

Read about electronic wire transfers, a payment method available to payees with a foreign bank account

Payment Services sends electronic wire payments to foreign payees with bank accounts that are not located within the United States and only when no other form of payment is accepted.

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Given the sensitivity and processes associated with the issuance of this payment, our financial partner charges a processing per transaction fee, making this UC San Diego’s most costly payment method. These fees are not passed on to departments or our  payees. Payees may be charged an incoming wire transfer fee once the payment credits their bank account. These costs cannot be predetermined by UC San Diego nor are we responsible for paying these fees. Payees should contact their bank directly to find out what the incoming wire transfer fee may be. 

Wire transfer payments is a manual payment process; the turnaround time is 7-10 business days from the date the wire request is approved by your department. Once payment is processed in the bank, you will see the wire payment post in Oracle.

Wire Request Checklist

Ensure you have obtained the following prior to submitting your wire request on Services & Support

  • Ensure the payee is set up and active within PaymentWorks.  
    • Note: For foreign individuals receiving payments for scholarship/fellowships, royalties, and independent services (including honoraria recipients and performers) a Glacier request will need to be completed via Payment Compass. Glacier helps determine tax residency, tax withholding rates, and income tax treaty eligibility.
  • Purchase Order Wires
    • Request a purchase order in Oracle
    • Obtain a valid invoice. Note: A quote or estimate is not considered a valid invoice. If you do not submit an invoice, your request will be rejected.
    • Payment should be requested after services have been rendered or goods received.
    • Obtain a valid invoice
  • Non-PO wires
    • Obtain a valid invoice. Note: Note: A quote or estimate is not considered a valid invoice. If you do not submit an invoice, your request will be rejected.
      • If you do not have a valid invoice, obtain supporting documentation that explains the business purpose/reason for payment.
        • If an invoice number is not available, the Services & Support ticket number you receive after submitting your request, beginning with *RITM, will be used to substitute the invoice number.
    • Requests for honorarium wires should provide the following:
      • Where services were performed
      • If they were in California or Not
      • Date of lecture
      • Detailed Business Purpose
    • Complete the Wire Transfer Cover Sheet (only for Subaward Wires)
    • Please see the following Knowledge Based Article on Kuali Subaward Invoice Wire Transfer Payments

If payment is requested in foreign currency, the exchange rate will be determined at the time of wire issuance within our banking portal. Please do not calculate the exchange rate on the request when you submit it. 

Requesting a Wire Payment

Complete the Non travel Wire Request form at Services & Support. 

  1.     Fill out the following required fields
      1. Wire Request Type
      2. Financial Unit Approver
        1. It will route to your financial unit approver to approve
      3. Supplier Name and Site ID
      4. Supplier Number
      5. Supplier Site/ Full Remit Address
        1. All wire payments need to have a "Wire" supplier site. If there is not one available in the drop down when you submit your request, you may proceed without and the Supplier Set Up team will update this once they receive the request. 
        2. wires require full Payee/ Beneficiary address details. Not providing a full address could cause a disruption in the wire payment and/ or cause the wire payment to be returned. This requirement is intended to mitigate fraud. If there is not a correct address for your supplier in the drop down, you need to invite your supplier into PaymentWorks to register the correct address
          1. Ask your supplier to request "payments by wire" on their request
      6. IBAN and SWIFT/ BIC are required on invoices (European Community and some other countries). The following documents provide additional information needed to identify a currency code for a specific country. While there are a few exceptions, currency codes are typically composed of a country’s two-character internet country code plus a third character denoting the currency unit. Please select one of the following:
        1. Payee Bank Account Number
        2. IBAN Number
        3. BSB/CLABE
      7. Bank Name
      8. Bank Address
      9. Swift/BIC Code
      10. Currency Type
        1. If the wire should be transferred in USD, USD Amount to be wired
        2. If he wire should be transferred with a foreign currency, provide currency type (MXN,CAD) and select one of the following:
          1. USD Amount to be Wired In Foreign currency
          2. Foreign Currency Amount to be Wires.For non PO/ Subaward wires, the Common Chart of Accounts String  
            1. Wires on a PO will be processed against the COA provided upon the request of the PO
      11. Your attachments are required. 

If any of the above pieces of information are not filled out correctly, your wire request will be rejected and you will be required to resubmit your request.

For more information regarding Bank Codes please see the following: 

Currency CodesUse this document to identify the currency type for your international payment.

Cross-Currency Payment Rules Resource GuideUse this document to obtain the  currency code and currency type as well as any additional required fields other than the ones noted on the Wire Request Form.


Wire Transfer Exceptions

Wire transfer payments cannot easily be retracted or reversed. It is the department’s responsibility to ensure payment is owed and bank details are correct.

On a case-by-case basis, Payment Services can make an exception and remit a domestic wire transfer payment. Examples of exceptions include payments for escrow, etc. UC San Diego no longer remits draft payments.

Wire Fees

Wire Fees - Who Pays?

The University pays for the outgoing wire fee from our bank, Bank of America. We also share the intermediary bank fee (if applicable) with the payee's bank. Most banks also charge their account holders to receive a wire payment. The shared intermediary bank fee and any of the payee's bank fees is what is taken from the final payout to the payee. 

Our bank, Bank of America, does not know the exact amount of the intermediary bank charge. They estimate and pre-pay a variable amount of $7 - $15.   


Intermediary Bank Fee is the amount charged by a 3rd party bank(s) that act as a go-between, to facilitate a money transfer transaction between two different banks. The 3rd party bank(s) receiving funds from the sender’s bank and routing it to the beneficiary’s bank is known as the Intermediary Bank. This charge is almost always applicable on all money transfer transactions abroad. The sender’s bank will be not be knowing about the exact fee beforehand. It is usually around USD $15-30 (UC San Diego pays half of this fee).  


The beneficiary bank abroad will likely charge a fee to their account holders for receiving money. This is called the Beneficiary Bank Fee. The sender’s bank cannot say beforehand if such a fee will be applicable on a particular transaction. This is because the Beneficiary Bank Fee is decided by the Beneficiary Bank. It can range anywhere from USD $0-15 (UC San Diego does not pay any of this fee).


UC San Diego's established wire terms are "shared" or "SHA" – the sender and beneficiary/payee agree to share the intermediary bank fee. The sender pre-pays half of the fee, and the beneficiary’s share of intermediate bank fee and beneficiary bank fee (if any) would be debited from the transferred amount.

Returned Wires

If a wire transfer payment is returned (refer to why my wire transfer payment is returned, below), the foreign bank may charge a returned wire fee. Fees determined on a case-by-case basis by the receiving financial institution. In this case, Payment Services will credit all the returned funds to the department. Payment Services is not responsible for returning the full initial requested amount. In cases where Payment Services made a mistake, the fee may be returned to the department. Returned funds will be posted to the departments CCOA

  • Example: A wire for $500.00 is sent to Mexico but the payee’s bank in Mexico returns it due to an invalid account number provided by the department. The beneficiary’s bank/payee charges a $ 50 fee for the processing of the return. Payment Services receives a credit of $450.00. In this case, the department will see the returned funds of $450.00. If the department decides to reissue this payment, a new wire transfer request must be submitted, and the department would have to fund the remaining $50.

Bank Codes

Bank codes are needed for requesting wires: ABA, IBAN, SWIFT/ BIC, BSB, and CLABE.

Required banking codes for wires:

  •       U.S. Banking Institutions require an ABA/ routing number
  •       Foreign Banking Institutions require the SWIFT/ BIC as well as the IBAN, in lieu of the account number or the BSB (Australia) + bank account number or CLABE (Mexico) + bank account number.

Chart of Accounts (COA)

The Financial Unit approver is anyone who oversees use of the Chart of Accounts string attached to a made transaction. Chart of Accounts or COA is what was formerly known as account indexes:

  •       For additional information regarding COA's please refer to the following PDF, this is an in-depth guide to COA's
If you have any questions on what to enter for the Financial Unit Information, please reach out to your fund manager.


  • What is an ABA? The ABA (American Bankers' Association National Numeric System) routing number is a unique, 9-digit identifying transit number assigned to each bank.
  • What is the IBAN? The IBAN (International Bank Account Number) is a series of alphanumeric characters that uniquely identify an account held at a bank. It can be up to 34 characters long and contains at least one 2-character country code, 2 check digits, and the basic bank account number. The basic bank account number identifies the bank as well as the account holder. In printed format, spaces are inserted for readability (e.g., DE16 5003 3300 0532 0130 00).
  • What is the BIC or SWIFT? The BIC (Bank Identifier Code) is an 8-character code also known as the SWIFT address and is uniquely assigned to banks. Branch codes can be added to the BIC to further designate which branch of a bank should receive the SWIFT message. When a branch code is added, the BIC has 11 characters (e.g., BARCGB22 or DEUTDE3B400).
  • What is the BSB? The Australian BSB (Bank/ State/ Branch) code is a 6-digit code that precedes the actual bank account number. The first 3 digits represent the bank institution code, and the last 3 digits represent the actual branch code for the beneficiary account. The BSB code is required for all wires going to Australia.
  • What is the CLABE? The CLABE (Clace Bancaria Estandarizada) is a banking standard for the numbering of bank accounts in Mexico. This standard is a requirement for the sending and receiving of international transfers since June 1, 2004. The CLABE account code has 18 digits which always contains the payee's bank account number. The CLABE code is required for all wires going to Mexico.

Wires FAQ

Can I send a domestic wire payment to a domestic bank?

We do not typically allow domestic wire transfer payments. On a case-by-case basis, Payment Services may deem this allowable. Prior approval is required by submitting the details of the request via Services & Support.

Can I submit a wire invoice through PaymentWorks?

Not at this time. Payments requiring a wire transfer must follow the wire transfer request process, which includes the completion of a wire transfer form. Submit a Service and Support case for a wire transfer form.


What is the minimum amount I can send for a foreign wire payment request?

$50.USD. Wire transfer payments are manual and require multiple resources to process regardless of the dollar amount. UC San Diego also incurs a per wire transfer fee plus the payee may get charged an incoming wire fee from their receiving bank. Due to these considerations we do not process payments under $50 USD.

Can the Payee fill out the wire payment request form?

The payee/supplier can fill out the top portion of the wire form and return that completed form to the department. The bottom portion of the wire payment request form must be completed by the department.  The submission of the wire transfer payment must be submitted via Services & Support by the department.

Can the Payee submit a wire payment request form via Services & Support?

No, they can only be submitted directly from the department.

Who is authorized to sign the department approval signature on the wire form?

An employee within the BUMT, fund manager, MSO/DBO, anyone appointed as authorized by the department.

Who is authorized to sign the department approval signature on the wire form?

An employee within the BUMT, fund manager, MSO/DBO, anyone appointed as authorized by the department.

How long does it take for a wire payment to reach the payee’s bank account?

Once the Services & Support case is closed, the Wire Request Form is routed for review. Once approved, the payment is input into the bank, processing time varies at the discretion of the payee’s bank institution.

How long does it take for a wire payment to post to the department’s operating ledger?

Once payment is processed in the bank and Payment Services receives confirmation, the payment will appear in Oracle and will post to the ledger.

Is there a way to track or get a tracking number for the wire transfer payment request submitted?

No. Unfortunately, we are not provided a tracking number by our financial partner at the time of wire issuance. If you need a payment confirmation number also known as a TRN.

How do I obtain the TRN number to confirm that the wire payment was completed?

You can confirm that a payment has been completed by looking up the invoice number in Oracle and seeing that a payment has been applied. In order to obtain the TRN, submit a Services & Support case.

Can a wire payment be canceled?

Wire transfer payments cannot easily be retracted, reversed or canceled. Please ensure all wire transfer requests are valid prior to submitting a request. If a payment is made in error, return of the funds is not guaranteed and the department is responsible for the loss.

A foreign payee received a check but cannot cash it and would like a wire transfer payment instead, what should I do?

The department will need to submit a Services & Support case to request the check to be canceled and reissued via wire payment. Once the check has been canceled, the requestor will be provided with a Wire Request form and the case will be transferred to the wire processing agent who will be able to further assist you in processing a wire request for this payment.

What do I do if my department sent a duplicate wire payment in error?

The department needs to contact the payee immediately to request they either decline from accepting the funds into their account OR ask the payee to send the funds back to UC San Diego. Department is responsible for all fees incurred (submit a Services & Support case for further assistance).

If a payee bills us in foreign currency, can we pay in US Dollars?

No, the wire form will need to be completed in foreign currency. * The conversion rate is determined by our financial partner at the time of wire payment. The rate is not determined prior to payment submission.

Find answers, request services, or get help from our team at the UC San Diego Services & Support portal.