05.11 - Authorization of Volunteers

May 6, 2010

A. Definitions.

A-1. Acknowledgement of Risk and Waiver of Liability (Waiver). Legal document that lists the particular dangers of an activity, states that the individual accepts the risks in exchange for participating in the activity, and waives liability against the university. Waivers are prepared only by the Office of Risk Management (Risk).

A-2. Authorized Volunteer. Person who has been asked to perform duties on behalf of the university by a university employee normally authorized to recruit and offer employment (e.g., program director, unit administrator).

A-3. Authorized Volunteer Position Description. A form that documents duties of authorized volunteers.

A-4. Auto coverage. The university’s coverage for claims arising from use of university-owned vehicles, including comprehensive and collision coverage for damage to university-owned vehicles.

A-5. General Liability. Coverage for bodily injury or property damage involving third parties.

A-6. Personal auto coverage. Auto coverage for a vehicle titled to an individual.

A-7. Personal medical benefits. Health coverage for an individual.

A-8. Third parties. An individual or entity other than the university or the university’s volunteers. (The university is the first party and the coverage provider is the second party.)

A-9. Workers Compensation. Coverage for injuries suffered while working in the course and scope of the described job duties.

B. Policy. The university benefits from the services of its many volunteers. For the protection of the university and its volunteers, the university provides general liability coverage for claims that arise from authorized volunteer activities, and auto coverage if a volunteer is authorized to drive a university-owned vehicle. The university does not provide coverage for activity-related injuries to volunteers or for damage to a volunteer’s personal vehicle. Volunteers must use their personal medical benefits and personal auto coverage in the event of activity-related injury and for damage to their personal vehicles. For exceptions related to workers compensation coverage, contact Risk. Exceptions may be granted for services critical to the university’s mission or for university signature events.

C. Process.

C-1. Volunteer Position Descriptions. Units will prepare an Authorized Volunteer Position Description form for all positions for which volunteers are recruited, describing specific duties. After preparing the position description, units will work with Risk to discuss the activities and appropriate risk planning.

C-2. Waiver. Risk will develop a Waiver using the Authorized Volunteer Position Description drafted by the unit. Units may not write their own Waivers, or adapt Waivers developed for any other use. Waivers are legal documents, and Risk works with General Counsel’s office to develop Waivers for specific activities.

C-3. Volunteer Vehicle Use. If a volunteer will be driving university-owned vehicles, the volunteer must meet the driver requirements stated in APM 05.08 I-3. The volunteer’s acknowledgement of driving responsibilities must be noted on the Authorized Volunteer Position Description form.

C-4. Claims and Incidents. Report all injuries, claims, and incidents immediately to the university employee who authorized the volunteer position. This individual is responsible for immediately reporting incidents involving university volunteers to Risk. See section E for contact information.

C-5. Workers Compensation. Units seeking workers compensation coverage for specific volunteer activities must consult with Risk. Coverage determinations are made on a case-by-case basis by the workers compensation insurer, and cannot be guaranteed.

D. Forms and Examples. For instructions and examples of completed forms, go to Risk Management: Volunteers.

E. Contact Information. Problems or questions regarding the use of volunteers for university sponsored activities may be referred to Risk at (208) 885-7177, Risk Email, or by fax at (208) 885-9490.