Travel FAQ

EMPLOYEES

Q. Does UALR’s travel/auto insurance policy cover my personal vehicle if my vehicle is damaged while driving on university business?

A. Pursuant to UALR’s travel policy, the university assumes no responsibility for any maintenance, operations costs, accidents, fines, tolls, etc., incurred by the owner of the (private) vehicle while on official university business.

Q. What coverage does the university offer me if I am in an at-fault accident in my personal vehicle while on university business?

A. The employee’s personal insurance would be primarily liable for all claims from the other driver. The university’s auto insurance would serve as secondary insurance, in regards to liability only, for the other driver. AGAIN, UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES ARE ANY DAMAGES TO AN EMPLOYEE’S PERSONAL VEHICLE INVOLVED IN AN ACCIDENT WHILE ON UNIVERSITY BUSINESS COVERED BY UALR’S AUTO INSURANCE.

Q. Can I drive my personal vehicle while running errands or traveling on university business?

A. Yes. However, see the responses to the questions above regarding risk and liability. The employee must also have an approved Travel Authorization (TA) on file (or a “No Cost – UALR Insurance Only” Travel Authorization if not seeking expense reimbursement) in order to be covered by the university’s employee travel insurance policy.

Q. Does the university have a recommendation regarding operating a personal vehicle while on university business?

A. It is highly recommended that if an employee is traveling on university business, he or she use a university-owned, motor pool, or rental vehicle (rented from one of our state contracted rental agencies). By doing so, liability shifts to the university rather than the employee’s personal insurance. However, the employee must be in the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program prior to operating a university-owned, motor pool, or rental vehicle.

Q. How do I get entered in the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program?

A. Complete the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form and return it with a legible copy of your driver’s license to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration, Donaldson Student Services Center Rm. 425. It may also be emailed to rmharrison@ualr.edu.

Q. Do I need to complete the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form if I am operating a university-owned, motor pool, or rental vehicle while on university business?

A. Yes. Under U of A policy, an employee, student, or guest of state must be an approved driver in the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program prior to operating a university-owned, rental, or motor pool vehicle.

Q. Do I need to complete the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form if I am operating my personal vehicle while on university business?

A. We ask that all employees be entered into the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program, even if operating a personal vehicle, as part of our due diligence in ensuring our employees are licensed and safe drivers.

Q. Do I need to complete the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form if I am travelling on university business but am not claiming mileage reimbursement or am travelling by some mode other than a motor vehicle?

A. We highly recommend that all of our employees be entered into the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program, even under these circumstances. This will ensure that if an emergency situation arises and our employee needs to drive on university business, we have done our diligence in ensuring that the employee is licensed and a safe driver.

Q. Once I complete the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form, where do I submit it?

A. The form should be submitted to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration located in the Donaldson Student Services Center Rm. 425. The form, along with a legible copy of your driver’s license, may also be emailed to Matt Harrison at rmharrison@ualr.edu.

Q. I have completed the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form and have submitted it to the appropriate office. How do I find out if I am eligible to drive on behalf of the university? How long is the form good for? Do I need to submit one for each trip I make?

A. A representative of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration will notify the sponsor(s) or department head(s) of your eligibility to drive on behalf of UALR, who will in turn notify you. The form is good for as long as you are employed at UALR and you do not need to submit a new one for each trip you make.

Q. Do I have to complete the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form when I renew my license? Do I need to provide a new copy of my driver’s license?

A. No.

Q. I’ve let my driver’s license expire. What do I need to do to become active in the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program again?

A. The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration receives weekly status updates from the Department of Motor Vehicles on those persons in the driver database. If we receive an update that your driver’s license has expired, we will email you a reminder that you need to renew your license. You will not be able to operate a motor vehicle on university business until your license is renewed. You can forward us a copy of your renewed license to be immediately authorized to drive or wait until we receive the next weekly update, when we will be notified that your license is once again current.

Q. Who should sign as my Travel Administrator on TA’s, TR-1’s, and Special Meeting Forms?

A. The travel administrator will be your respective chancellor, vice chancellor, athletic director, dean, or associate vice chancellor. These positions may assign signatory authority to others but only if in writing and directly presented to Procurement Services. In no case can the traveler and the travel administrator be the same person.

Q. Who should sign as the Travel Supervisor?

A. Travel supervisors are the travel delegates in Procurement Services (LaVonne Colwell) for travel authorizations or in Accounts Payable (Lanita Shepherd) for travel reimbursements.

Q. Who is a Guest of State?

A. Guests of state are visiting persons that are NOT employees of the State of Arkansas (at UALR or any other institution or department of the state). Students can be considered guests of state. Meals for the guest of state are NOT subject to federal per diem meal limits but accompanying state or federal employees are.

Q. Where can I find a summary of the university’s insurance policies?

A. This is located on the Office of Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration’s website under the Insurance link.

STUDENTS

Q. The student travel policy is applicable if “the university will benefit from the representation in a substantial manner.” How does one determine if this is the case? Are there some examples of trips that would fall under this? Are there examples of some that wouldn’t?

A. Examples of this would include attending conferences when a department or registered student organization expressly asks you to go, attending a field trip in connection with a class as a class, and running errands specifically related to the mission of the university on behalf of a faculty or staff member. Some examples of travel that do not fall under this would include personal conference travel, travel to social activities (such as a formal dance in Little Rock), or running personal errands on behalf of a faculty or staff member.

Q. I am a student attending a conference on my own and am paying all my expenses to go to this conference. Do I need to follow the student travel policy?

A. If you are choosing to attend a conference on your own (i.e., you have an interest in biology and choose to go to a biology symposium on your own), you do not need to follow the student travel policy. As mentioned above, if a registered student organization or campus department has expressly asked you to go, even if you are paying out of your pocket, you need to follow this policy.

Q. Do students, student employees, and graduate assistants need to be in the Arkansas State Vehicle Safety Program if operating a motor vehicle on university business?

A. Yes. This applies if they are operating any motor vehicle, whether personal, university-owned, motor pool, or rental.

Q. I am a student employee and need to run an errand in my personal vehicle as a part of my job. Am I covered by the university’s auto or travel insurance?

A. If you are being paid by the university while on an errand, you are covered by the employee travel insurance and the applicable limits of auto insurance. However, you must be an approved driver in the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program by completing the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form. See the employee section above for further information.

Q. I am a graduate assistant and I travel frequently on behalf of my department. Am I covered by the university’s auto or travel insurance?

A. Graduate assistants are covered under the same policies that cover faculty/staff travel, including employee travel insurance and the applicable limits of auto insurance. However, you must be an approved driver in the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program by completing the Authorization to Operate a Motor Vehicle form. See the employee section above for further information.

Q. Can students drive other students in their personal vehicle to a field trip, off-campus event, or other school-sponsored event?

A. Yes. However, student drivers must be authorized to drive according to the University of Arkansas System Vehicle Safety Program and an approved Class Trip Authorization must be on file. Further, no other student may substitute as a driver unless he or she is also an authorized driver and listed on the approved Class Trip Authorization.

ADVISORS

Q. I am an advisor for an RSO making a trip next month. What exactly are my responsibilities under the student travel policy?

A. Your primary responsibility is to make sure that the students going on the trip are aware of the policy, have read it, and are taking the necessary steps to comply with it. In addition, you may need to facilitate the purchasing of the student travel accident insurance (see section below).

Q. If I am a sponsor and I am going on a trip with my students, why is it necessary for someone here in Little Rock to have copies of emergency contact information?

A. Should an accident occur while in route to your destination, for example, then the dean of students’ office would have someone to contact should any of that information be needed.

TRAVEL ACCIDENT INSURANCE

Q. How do I purchase student travel accident insurance and how much does it cost?

A. Student travel accident insurance is purchased when the Class Trip Authorization form is filed with the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration, if it is required for the trip and the section on the form appropriately completed. A list of the students who will be participating in the class trip along with their student ID numbers must be attached to the Class Trip Authorization form. The cost of the insurance is .60 per student, per day, for vehicle travel and .80 per day for travel by airplane. The department or student organization will be back charged for the insurance expense following completion of the trip.

Q. What does student travel accident insurance cover?

A. Student travel accident insurance covers students for accidents incurred from the beginning to the end of the trip, not only while traveling in a vehicle. Students are also covered when traveling internationally, although they must purchase additional insurance that will cover evacuation in case of injury. Contact the Office of International Services, 501.683.7566, for further information.

Q. How do I, as an employee, ensure I am covered on the university employee travel accident insurance when traveling on behalf of UALR?

A. When traveling on official UALR business employees are provided limited coverage under the university’s travel accident insurance as long as a TA form is on file. Even if the employee will not claim expenses for reimbursement, the TA form must be completed and the “No Cost – UALR Insurance Only” box checked. Again, the employee will NOT be covered by the university’s employee travel insurance without an approved TA on file prior to the trip.

Q. I am an employee and will be traveling internationally on university business. Will I be covered under the university’s travel accident insurance?

A. Yes. Employees traveling internationally on university business are covered under the travel accident insurance policy. However, there are exclusions and it is suggested that you contact the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration (rmharrison@ualr.edu or 501.569.3202) or Risk Management (pbritton@uasys.edu or 501.686.2940) for further clarification.