Five College Risk Management

Policies on Student Liability, Property and Insurance

See also Student Personal Liability.

Insurance

The following information is provided to inform students and parents about the insurance coverage that the College may purchase, and how the coverage may apply to students. The descriptions of coverage are not intended to, nor do they supplement, amend or modify any insurance policy terms and conditions. The College reserves the right at all times to modify its insurance coverage, terms, conditions and limits without notice to any person or entity, including students, faculty or staff. Students may wish to make adjustments in their own coverages if they feel that it would be appropriate to their interests.

Medical

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires that all students carry health insurance or sickness and accident insurance. The Colleges provide Student Accident and Sickness Insurance that meets or exceeds the state requirements. The program is a “hard waiver” program, which means that students are automatically enrolled and billed for the insurance unless they waive the coverage in accordance with the plan requirements. For details of your College’s program, see AmherstHampshireMount Holyoke or Smith.

Sickness and Accident Insurance is not comparable to most employer-type health insurance programs, as it has lifetime per-condition limits as well as sub-limits for out-patient, pharmacy and other benefits. The policy conditions may result in the student incurring partial or full charges for some medical care. The College is not responsible for any co-payments, medical, dental or surgical expenses not covered by the College’s “Student Accident and Sickness Insurance Program”, or the student’s own insurer or any uninsured or excluded medical, dental or surgical expenses.

Claims are handled by the program administrator. The staff at Student Health Services may provide assistance with claims problems. The program is a managed care program, so in the event of an injury or sickness, the insured student should, if at school, immediately report to the Student Health Service. If the student is away from school, consult your doctor, and follow his/her instructions. Report all claims to the program administrator (see the plan brochure for information) and follow their instructions.

Intercollegiate and club sports athletes have additional benefits available under certain policies which are purchased for their behalf by the College. Coverage applies to athletes who are injured while in organized competition or practice, which is constructively supervised, or traveling to or from one of these events. The Sports Accident Policy provides up to $75,000 for intercollegiate and $25,000 for club sport injuries, and has a $500 deductible. If you do not carry the Student Medical Insurance you are responsible for meeting the deductible either with your own insurance or out-of-pocket. (The Student Medical Insurance provides $500 for intercollegiate sports injuries or covers club sports as "any condition" subject to policy limits, terms and conditions, which meets the deductible.) The NCAA policy insures for an unlimited amount (subject to policy terms) over the Sports Accident Policy, for intercollegiate sports only, and benefits range from medical and rehabilitation to lifetime disability income and home health care. The College also carries a Club Sports Catastrophic Policy with a policy limit of $5,000,000, for medical expenses only, in excess of all other collectible insurance and a $25,000 deductible. The benefits of all of these policies are over and above benefits available through any other valid and collectible insurance available to the injured person. The Comptroller's Office administers these insurance policies. These policies do not extend to participants in intramural or any other recreational sports. They cover intercollegiate and College recognized club sports only. For details of your College’s program, see AmherstHampshireMount Holyoke or Smith.

The College accepts no responsibility for any losses, costs or expenses not covered by the insurance policies listed above, whether by coverage terms or exclusions or the injured student's failure to comply with policy required claims procedures.

For a complete description of NCAA-deductible coverage and Club Catastrophic Coverages provided for athletes, contact the Athletics Department. For the NCAA catastrophic coverage, see NCAA.

Travel Accident

The College provides limited travel accident insurance, including medical evacuation and repatriation to students traveling on College or academic business, worldwide. Worldwide travel assistance services are also available. Contact the Dean of Students Office for details or see Travel Accident & Assistance.

Auto

The College purchases Auto Liability Insurance which protects both the College and the driver from third party liability and third party property damage arising from the use of College owned, hired/rented and non-owned vehicles. The Five College Risk Management web site has more detailed information on this coverage, see Auto Insurance.

  1. For College owned vehicles, the student driver must be credentialed and have permission from a faculty member, a dean, a coach, or a department head to drive a college vehicle.

  2. To rent or drive a rented vehicle for College business, the student must be at least 21 years old (rare exceptions may be made in specific circumstances; check with Risk Management), credentialed and have written authorization from an authorized person (see A. above) and be a scheduled driver with the rental company. Note — Most car rental agencies prohibit persons under the age of 25 from driving rented vehicles. The College policy is to waive coverage for liability and collision coverage on domestic rentals; however, students should follow departmental guidelines with respect to waiving the rental company insurance. If the College insurance is used, a certificate of insurance should be obtained as proof of insurance.

  3. If a student drives his/her own vehicle on College business, such use must be specifically authorized in writing before the use occurs. The College policy is excess of the student’s own policy with respect to liability coverage. No coverage is provided for any physical damage to the student’s vehicle, nor will any deductible amount be paid by the College, whether the vehicle is used for College business or not, and regardless of any liability of the driver or other parties.

The College auto insurance policy may not respond to cover unauthorized drivers. Unauthorized drivers may be personally liable for claims brought against them. The College may also have a right to claim against unauthorized drivers.

Personal Vehicles on Campus

See Personal Vehicles

Property

Students should insure their property.
The College does not have property insurance for student possessions, and it accepts no responsibility for any personal possessions or property of students. Any possessions in student rooms or left in storage areas are left at the owner’s own risk. Students are responsible for insuring their own property against loss, and may be able to do so using parents’ policies or by obtaining a tenant’s policy through a local insurance agent. It is recommended that students keep their doors locked at all times and not leave valuable items in storage areas.

Under no circumstances will the College be responsible for any loss of art, rare or irreplaceable books, manuscripts, antiques, jewelry, cash, securities, valuable papers such as deeds, furs, items that have only personal value, or other unique items.

If you believe the College is responsible for your loss, you must file a written claim with the Office of Risk Management as soon as possible and within 30 days of the loss. The claim must include:

  • Your name
  • Campus address
  • Home address
  • Date of loss
  • Cause of loss
  • Items lost or damaged (describe, including age, condition and value, and whether they can be repaired or must be replaced.)

The College reserves the right to inspect the loss or claimed items. If the College determines that it is responsible for the loss, it will reimburse for the cost of repair or the adjusted value of the item (actual cash value). Students are responsible to minimize the loss or damage to their property. Students will not be compensated for any time spent in minimizing a loss (for example rescuing wet items and carefully drying them); depreciated value of an item that is still functional or useable; or the time to recreate an item (e.g., retyping a document due to failure to back up computers).

If you need insurance, and you are not able to arrange coverage under your homeowners’ or tenant’s policy, the Office of Risk Management recommends contacting:

CSI Insurance Agency, Inc.
316 Maxwell Road, Suite #100
Alpharetta, GA 30009 
Tel: (888) 411-4911
Fax: (678) 832-4910
Email: info@csiprotection.com

This company offers an excellent “All Risk” coverage for students, and has very broad coverage for laptops and other portable items. For other options, see HF&C Insurance or Google “student property insurance”.

Liability

See Student Personal Liability

Workers' Compensation

Students who are employed by the College, and who are injured in the course of their work for the College are eligible for Workers’ Compensation. If a student is injured on the job, the student should contact his/her supervisor immediately to report the injury and complete an accident investigation form. Questions should be directed to the student’s supervisor and the Human Resources Office.