Contractual Liability

Contracts require a word of caution. If your department is involved in any contractual agreements, make sure that you contact the appropriate administrative department to review and sign your contract - Refer to How to Get a Document Signed by a Univesity Official. You can always contact our office, Jeff Karcher, Director of Risk Management for assistance with insurance clauses. It is important that contracts be reviewed so that we can make sure there are no improper transfers of risk.

Often, private firms or government agencies will incorporate clauses in contracts that attempt to release them from all liability for their actions relating to the contract. These are often referred to as "hold harmless or indemnification" clauses. The Attorney General has ruled that no State employee has legal authority to release or "hold harmless" another party, or to sign any contract in which the University agrees to "indemnify" another party.

The office that is indicated on the above how-to page is the office that can often assist you to negotiate alternative language or remove these clauses altogether. Also, remember that only certain administrators at the University have authority to sign contracts or agreements on behalf of the Board of Regents. We can assist you in reviewing and developing contractual agreements that will accomplish the greatest protection of University assets.

In some cases, negotiation of the troublesome clauses may not be possible and, in those cases, our office can provide a commercial insurance product, which will allow us to sign the contract in spite of the clause. However, this protection must be specifically arranged with our office. Contact Jeff Karcher, Director of Risk Management.