Frequently Asked Questions

The Insurance and Claims Services is frequently asked to explain the University's property and liability insurance programs.  The following questions and answers have been compiled to address the most common issues impacting employees and students on campus.

Who insures the University?

The University is insured by the Department of Administration, Risk Management Division (RMD).  The State's self-insurance program, in accordance with A.R.S. §41-621 and §41-622, provides liability and State-owned property coverage to all Arizona State agencies, including the universities.

University-owned property coverage

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If University-owned property is damaged or stolen, what is the procedure to file an insurance claim?

Criminal damage or theft of University-owned property

If the loss was due to criminal activity (graffiti, theft, vandalism) or involves a vehicle accident or injury, please contact NAU Police Department dispatch FIRST at 523-3611 to file a police report and then follow up with filing a Damage Report.  

Damage to University-owned property (non-criminal)

Fill out the on-line Damage Report and submit.  The Damage Report is not a police report, but an information report that provides information on the loss and provides documentation to generate an insurance claim.

Timeline to File a Claim

It is important to file the Damage Report or Police Report in a timely manner.  Losses estimated to exceed $10,000 are to be reported to State Risk Management within one working day.  State Risk Management will deny losses not reported within 90 days from date of occurrence.

What is the procedure for water damage to facility?

Contact the Capital Assets and Services F.A.S.T. office (3-4227) for water cleanup and repairs during normal business hours.  After business hours and on weekends notify the South Plant Operator (3-6445).  Provide information to the operator regarding the location, intensity, and type of flood (i.e. sewage, storm water, plumbing line, etc). 
Complete the on-line Damage Report if damage is non-criminal.  If the damage is criminal, contact University Police Dispatch (3-3611) to file a police report FIRST and then follow up with filing a Damage Report.
Refer to the Water Damage Restoration Guideline on the Office of Regulatory Compliance (ORC) website, or contact ORC Environmental and Industrial Hygiene Affairs at 523-6109.

Does RMD pay replacement cost on State equipment/property claims?

No.  RMD pays the Actual Cash Value (ACV) on University-owned personal property losses (replacement cost less depreciation).   The ACV is based on current replacement value less depreciation, depending on the age and expected useful life of the property.  Real property losses to buildings are reimbursed on the actual cost to repair (cost to clean carpet, repair walls, repair windows, repair water damage, etc.).

Is there a deductible on State property claims?

No.  However, the cost to replace or repair University-owned property must be over the $100 minimum loss for each claim.  If the loss is less than the $100 minimum per incident, a claim will not be filed and the department will not be reimbursed for the repairs or replacement purchase.

Personal property coverage

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Does the State cover personal property of faculty and staff?

No.  The State does not insurance personal property owned by faculty or staff.  There is no coverage for personal property that an employee may bring to work such as computers, art work, books, etc.  The exception is the use of personal property as a condition of employment.  In such cases, the requirements to use personal property must be stipulated in the employee's job description, and must be required of all employees within that job description.  An inventory list (specifying description of property, make/model/serial numbers, date of purchase, and condition of property) shall be submitted to Insurance and Claims Services prior to the loss.  RMD shall insure personal property which is under the clear responsibility of the University because of written leases or other written agreements.

Does the State cover personal property of students living on campus?

No.  The State does not insure personal property of students living on campus.   Students are encouraged to purchase renters insurance.  Student property may also be  covered under their parents’ homeowner’s coverage:  Residence Hall Conduct Handbook,  Appendix I section D – “The University and hall staff assumes no responsibility for loss,  theft, or damage to personal belongings in or on residence hall property.  This policy  extends to resident rooms, storage areas, auto and bicycle lots, and all other residence hall  areas.  Residents are advised to carry homeowner’s or renter’s insurance coverage on their  personal belongings”.

I had personal items stolen from or damaged in an accident while on NAU business.  Does NAU’s insurance cover my loss?

No.  There is no coverage through State Risk Management for loss or damage to personal property.  If the individual incurring the loss believes his/her loss or damage resulted from  NAU negligence, then the individual may submit a third-party liability claim (Notice of Claim)  against NAU  in accordance to applicable Arizona statutes for claims against public  entities (A.R.S. §12-821.01).

Vehicle coverage

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Does the State provide insurance coverage for personal vehicles used on University business?

No.  The State does not provide physical damage coverage on personal vehicles.  The employee's personal automobile insurance is the primary coverage on any liability loss.  RMS’s liability coverage is excess over any valid or collectable coverage provided by the employee's automobile insurance carrier.

If a rental vehicle is used for University business, does the employee need to purchase the rental agency's insurance coverage?

No.  RMS recommends State employees not purchase the rental agency's optional insurance.  Rental vehicles used solely for University business are provided physical damage coverage just as if the rental vehicle were a State-owned vehicle.

Does the State provide insurance coverage to employees traveling to Mexico on University business? 

Yes.  The Mexican authorities recognize only Mexican insurance policies.  RMD has purchased Mexican auto, aircraft, and general liability policies for State agencies traveling to Mexico on State business.  Before driving a University vehicle into Mexico, contact Insurance and Claims Services (within 10 working days) to obtain an insurance packet.  Additionally, if you drive beyond the 15 mile "free trade zone" or to areas of Mexico other than Baja, you will need a written, notarized letter from NAU stating you are authorized to drive a State vehicle.  This letter should come from your department supervisor, chairperson, or dean.

I received a ticket while driving a University vehicle.  Am I responsible for paying the ticket?

Yes, the driver is responsible for all tickets received while driving a University-owned or rented vehicle. 

Are employees provided liability coverage when driving a University vehicle?

An officer, agent, or employee of the State shall be covered within the limitations of A.R.S. §41-621, while driving a State-owned or non-State-owned vehicle in the course and scope of employment.  The key to determining if an university employee (agent of the State) has coverage is whether his/her use of the University vehicle is authorized by the University in that particular situation.  If the employee has clear authority to use a University vehicle for State business, then the Department of Administration, RMD will extend liability coverage to that employee, assuming no intentional wrongdoing or criminal acts are involved. 

When is the use of a University-owned or rented vehicle not authorized?

University-owned vehicles are intended for official University activities and are not to be used for other activities.  If an employee (agent of the State) violates any of the following, he/she can be found personally liable by the State for any property damage or injury caused:  Activities that are not University sanctioned; transporting persons who are not University employees or officially affiliated with the University (e.g. family, friends, independent contractors, etc.); conducting personal business or for personal convenience; driving while under the influence of alcohol or any illegal drug; operating a vehicle without possessing a valid driver’s license. 

Who can ride in a State vehicle?

Arizona Administrative Code R2-15-202(B)(3) prohibits vehicle use with any person not essential to accomplishing the purpose for which the vehicle is dispatched.  Contractors or any non-employee should not ride in a State vehicle.  Since the contractor (or non-employee) is not a State employee, workers’ compensation will not apply for any injuries they may sustain in an accident.  Also, A.R.S. §41-621 does not cover automobile medical benefits.  That means the injured contractor (or non-employee) will try to bring a liability claim against the State for their accidental injuries.  

What should an employee do if involved in an accident?

Contact the local law enforcement agency to file an incident report.  On campus accidents contact University Police, 523-3611.  An accident form and insurance identification card are located in the vehicle's glove box.  Report all accidents and/or damage to Transportation Services Center (523-2469) and Insurance and Claims Services (523-2009).

Student internship coverage

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Are students enrolled in internship programs provided general and professional liability insurance through the State?

Yes.  RMS provides liability coverage to students enrolled in a University-approved internship/externship program.  Students in an internship program must be acting at the direction and supervision of a University official and performing within the course and scope of their State-authorized activities (it is recognized that internship programs often take place at remote locations and there may not be direct, daily on-site supervision). 

Registered vehicle coverage

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Do volunteers have liability coverage?

Yes.  Registered volunteers, acting at the direction and supervision of State officials, and within the course and scope of their State-authorized activities, come within the State's coverage pursuant to statutes.  Volunteers and their supervisors must complete the Volunteer Registration Form and the form must be on file with Insurance and Claims Services prior to the beginning date of the volunteer’s activity.

Volunteers are defined as those persons doing University work under the direction and control of University officials and are not being paid by anyone for these activities.

Are volunteers covered by workers' compensation?

No.  Registered volunteers (including students and students enrolled in an internship program) are not covered by the State's workers' compensation program.  Workers' Compensation is provided to University employees, including student employees.  It is recommended registered volunteers obtain their own health/medical coverage prior to assisting the University.  However, the Arizona Department of Administration, Risk Management Section has purchased an accident, medical, and accidental death and dismemberment plan for registered volunteers to Arizona State agencies.  This plan is designed to cover registered volunteers while they participate in NAU authorized volunteer activities.  The plan will reimburse for eligible expenses which are not payable by the volunteer’s health care plan or any other insurance plan providing reimbursement for medical expenses.  Claim forms can be obtained from NAU Insurance and Claims Services at (928) 523-2009.

Student coverage

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Do students have medical coverage if injured during an on-campus University activity?

No.  RMS does not provide medical coverage to enrolled students injured while participating in University-related activities or academic programs (e.g. internship programs, science/art labs, band/flag line, theatrical performances, physical education activities, club/organization functions).  However, if a student wishes to file a claim against the State of Arizona for injuries, a third-party liability claim (Notice of Claim Against the State of Arizona form) would be the mechanism available.  Students are encouraged to obtain medical/health insurance prior to participation. 

Club coverage

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Do University clubs and organizations have liability coverage?

Student clubs and organizations do not have liability coverage through the State.  State Risk Management covers NAU employees who are advisors for their supervision to student clubs and organizations, but do not insure the club activities or provide certificates of insurance for their activities.