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Office of Purchasing: Attorney Services and Insurance

Contracts with attorneys for legal services require approval from the Office of the Attorney General.

Legal review

Legal review and approval are required for any contract between the University and another party when the contract amount is greater than $5,000. Service cannot begin until legal approval is obtained. The University has no legal means of paying the invoice and the individual making the initial arrangements shall be held legally responsible. These contracts may require as much as nine weeks for approval.

Serial contracts

Serial contracts are separate orders or contracts, each for the same kind of goods or service, which can have the effect of improperly avoiding the legal review limit of $5,000 or the bid limit of $19,100. If serial contracts add up to more than the bid limit or legal review limit, writing several lower individual orders or contracts is prohibited and will be rejected.

Insurance

The University is statutorily prohibited from directly buying insurance, that stipulation is dictated by the Department of General Services.

Prohibited contracts

Contracts cannot be used to create an employee-employer relationship. Employees must be placed on the University's payroll in the appropriate classifications. Failure to do so leads to serious legal problems regarding such matters as withholding state, federal and local taxes; workers compensation; unemployment compensation; and the commonwealth's obligation to defend suits brought against its employees.

An employee-employer relationship exists if any of the situations listed below are included in your contract:

  • The individual is paid on a per diem basis rather than a flat fee.
  • Work is performed during regularly scheduled work hours.
  • Work is performed under the supervision of a University employee who controls the manner in which the work is done.
  • The University furnishes the individual's equipment or supplies.
  • The individual performs duties as assigned by the University on a task-by-task basis.
  • The individual contracts regularly throughout the fiscal year with the University to provide the same service over and over.
  • The duties are performed on University-owned or University-leased premises.
  • The University has the right to discharge the person by giving advance written notice.
  • The individual performs the same duties as one holding a position in University service.