University Owned or Leased Vehicles
University owned vehicles: University owned vehicles includes all vehicles purchased by the University and maintained as part of the University's property inventory.
University leased vehicles: University leased vehicles include all long term leased vehicles for the use of the University or as otherwise provided for use by certain University employees.
A fleet vehicle insurance policy is maintained by SFA for all University owned and leased vehicles. This policy provides liability coverage for the University and authorized drivers within the damage limitations of the Texas Tort Claims Act. The policy also covers damage to the University owned vehicles and includes hired car physical damage coverage for University leased vehicles. There is $10,000.00 in medical payments coverage for passengers of the University owned vehicles. Additional coverage for passengers who are University employees would likely be available through workers' compensation. An employee driver's injuries would also likely be covered through workers' compensation.
Rented vehicles: Rented vehicles are short term rentals obtained through Enterprise Leasing, Tipton Ford Rentals, Avis, Hertz and all other rental car companies.
Almost all rented vehicles are personal rentals between the employee and the rental car company paid on a personal credit card or by some other personal obligation. In the rare circumstances where vehicles are rented by the University for activities where the rental vehicle is not appropriately reimbursable as part of employee travel, those procurements must be done through the University's purchasing system, i.e., by Purchase Order, and be properly approved.
Travel regulations allow for the reimbursement of the motor vehicle rental charge when on official state business, if the employee paid the cost directly to the vehicle rental company. Reimbursable costs include applicable taxes and collision damage waiver or loss damage waiver, unless the waiver is included in the state contracted rate. The following companies currently have state contracted rates: Advantage Rent-a-Car, Dollar Rent a Car, and Enterprise Rent-a-Car. Please ask for the rate and confirm the collision damage waiver inclusion, in case the company is no longer a state contract rate participant. Liability insurance, personal effects insurance, etc., are not reimbursable. Alternatively, employees may elect to receive the state allowed mileage rate in lieu of rental reimbursement.
Because the rental is considered a personal transaction between the employee and rental car company, liability for accidents, property damage, loss, theft, etc., rests upon the employee. Employees who do not have personal vehicle liability coverage for another vehicle which they own, should consider purchasing such coverage if they plan to rent vehicles.
Personal vehicles include privately owned, leased, rented, or other personally borrowed vehicles.
The employee's personal insurance when using a personal vehicle is responsible for liability coverage, regardless if it is used on University business. Mileage reimbursement paid for travel in a personal vehicle includes cost for gas, vehicle wear and tear, and insurance. For this reason, an employee's personal insurance is primary when using a personal vehicle. If the personal insurance is not sufficient to cover damages, then the State (more directly, the University) may provide secondary coverage if the accident occurred while conducting official business. Passengers of another employee's personal vehicle who are University employees on official business may receive workers' compensation coverage through the State; however, the driver's personal insurance would still provide primary coverage for injuries and liability to the passengers.
All drivers of University owned, leased, or rented (in rare circumstances) vehicles should be certified pursuant to University policy, with the one exception as described in the car benefits section below. Only University employees may be certified drivers.
Students who are not employed with the University must not be permitted to drive University owned, leased, or rented (rare) vehicles. Such students could incur great personal liability. Student employees who drive such vehicles must obtain University driver certification in accordance with the University's policy.
Accident & Damage Reports
Accidents or damages involving University owned, leased, or rented (rare) vehicles should be reported to UPD and the Director of Safety for insurance reporting purposes. Accidents or damages involving personal vehicles while conducting official business should be reported to your insurance company and your supervisor.
Vehicle logs reporting purpose of use, mileage, gasoline and oil consumed, passengers carried, and other necessary information must be maintained and filed for all University owned or leased vehicles, except those with car benefits as described below. Individuals provided car benefits are encouraged to maintain vehicle logs for income tax purposes, and must coordinate income tax reporting with the University Controller.
Definition - A limited number of employees who receive car benefits as part of their compensation package are provided a University owned or leased vehicle for official and personal use. The personal use portion is taxable income to the employee, unless otherwise exempted in the law.
Insurance - The University's fleet insurance policy provides coverage for both the official and personal use of the vehicle as outlined in Section I. B. above. Permissive use of the vehicle by non-University drivers is permitted, but state law protections for employees may not apply (e.g., workers' compensation, immunities, damage limitations, etc.) Permissive users may also have personal automobile policies as additional coverage.
Insurance - Contact the Director of Safety
Liability - Contact the General Counsel
Driver Certification - Contact UPD
Accidents - Contact UPD and Director of Safety (or personal insurance company if it involves a personal vehicle)
Policies - Refer to the University Policy
and Procedure Manual