Financial Administration

Uninsured Personal Property Losses or Damages (F41)

Revised: November 24, 1997


  1. Background

    Individuals, both employes and nonemployes, occasionally experience losses or damage to personal property for which the University of Wisconsin assumes responsibility but is not covered by the UW System’s self-funded insurance program. Prior to the issuance of this policy paper, the individual submitted claims for reimbursement to the State Claims Board. This policy establishes guidelines and procedures by which an individual may be reimbursed from UW departmental funds (not the Uninsured Loss Fund) when the loss or damage does not exceed specified amounts.


  2. Constraints

    • State Collective Bargaining Contracts limit reimbursement to classified represented employes for repair or replacement of damage or loss incurred in the line of duty to clothing, eye glasses and watches.

    • Wisconsin Statutes s.20.918 limits reimbursement to nonrepresented employes for repair or replacement of damage or loss incurred in the line of duty to clothing, eye glasses and watches. These limitations are specified in the State Compensation Plan.

    • Personal property does not include cash, except in unusual circumstances approved by the UW System Risk Manager.


  3. Policy

    1. UW Liability

      When loss or damage to personal property of individuals occurs for which the University of Wisconsin could be held responsible, the University department may authorize the individual to submit a claim against departmental funds for reimbursement of damage or loss up to a maximum of $50. If the claim exceeds $50 and the claimant alleges negligence by the institution, a formal claim must be filed by the claimant against the University as indicated in Wisconsin Statutes ss. 893.82 and 895.46.

    2. UW Not Liable but Desires to Maintain Goodwill

      If no insurance coverage is available because the UW is not deemed to be liable or negligent, but a UW department desires to maintain goodwill, the individual may submit a claim against departmental funds for reimbursement of the damage or loss up to a maximum of $500. The claim must be reviewed and approved by the institution risk manager.

      If the claim exceeds $500, the institution risk manager must review the claim with the System Risk Manager to determine if the loss should be processed through the State Claims Board or if some other coverage would apply. Final approval must be given by the System Risk Manager.

    3. Limitations for Employes

      If the individual is a UW employe who incurred loss or damage in the line of duty, the limitations in the applicable collective bargaining agreement or State Compensation Plan apply.

      1. Represented Employes

        Refer to the applicable collective bargaining contract or contact the institution personnel office for current limitations.

      2. Nonrepresented Employes

        Refer to the applicable biennial State Compensation Plan or contact the institution personnel office for current limitations.


  4. Procedures

    1. Individuals who sustain a loss or damage to personal property which is not covered by the State’s property or liability insurance may submit a claim for reimbursement to the department chairperson or supervisor. The claim must be supported by the following:

      1. A written statement from the individual that:

        1. details how loss or damage occurred,

        2. explains why the University of Wisconsin should reimburse the loss or damage, and

        3. indicates the employe’s position title and bargaining unit, if loss or damage is sustained by a represented employe.

      2. A receipt, invoice, canceled check or other documentation acceptable to the institution to substantiate the cost of repairing or replacing the lost or damaged item(s).

      3. An institution-approved claim form, such as a Payment to Individuals Report or Travel Expense Report.

    2. Approvals Required

      1. Departmental approval, in all cases.

      2. Institution Risk Manager approval, if claim exceeds $50.

      3. System Risk Manager approval, if claim exceeds $500.


  5. Compliance

    The application of this policy is subject to periodic audit by the Institution Internal Auditor in addition to the required institution preaudit approval prior to payment of claims.