Report Lost or Stolen Equipment

As soon as the loss is discovered, departments should report any stolen, missing, damaged, or destroyed property to:

  1. The University Police Department for investigation.
  2. The Office of Risk Management for insurance claims processing.
  3. The Fixed Assets Office for inventory records updating.

This reporting requirement applies regardless of the dollar amount of the loss. Procedures for reporting a claim are outlined below.

University Police Department

In order to initiate an investigation of stolen, missing or damaged equipment, the following information must be reported to University Police at 703-993-2810:

  1. Serial number.
  2. Mason barcode number.
  3. Cost of the missing item .
  4. Description of the location.
  5. Names of individuals with access to the area.
  6. Names of individuals with keys to the secure area.
  7. Indication of whether keys have been returned upon termination of employment and to whom they have been returned.

Office of Risk Management

The university is insured against theft of equipment, and the user department/office may receive reimbursement after the deductible (currently $1,000) has been charged to the department’s fund/org. This deductible is “per occurrence,” so all stolen items must be reported at the same time.

In cases where several departments experience loss or damage to property due to the same covered event, the $1,000 deductible is pro-rated among the various departments.

The university’s insurance policy specifies that items discovered missing during an inventory cannot be claimed as stolen for insurance reimbursement purposes.

The university is also insured against casualty loss (fire, lightning, explosion, wind, hail, water damage, power failure, vandalism, etc.) subject to the same $1,000 deductible. The Fidelity/Crime Bond Program provides coverage for employee dishonesty, loss of money, securities and property other than money and securities. This program covers losses up to the limit of the policy, with no deductible. In the event theft or fraud is suspected, the University Police must be notified.

Department general duties after a loss/damage include these requirements:

  1. Prevent further loss by taking reasonable steps to protect equipment/property from further loss/damage.
  2. Notify University or Local Police Department.
  3. Provide prompt notice of loss to the Office of Risk Management.
  4. Cooperate in the investigation and settlement of the claim. Department must submit proof of loss documentation and allow for inspection and appraisal of damaged property before its repair or disposal.

The following clarifications should be noted:

  1. Replacement value means that our insurance carrier will pay whatever it costs to restore the lost/damaged item to its previous state/condition. There is no adjustment for depreciation.
  2. In the event a department wants to upgrade a lost/damaged item, the insurance carrier will pay only what it would have cost to replace the item; the department must pay for the difference. In order to separate replacement cost and upgrade cost, departments should ask the vendor to annotate on the purchase order separate replacement cost and upgrade cost. Please note that the Commonwealth’s Risk Management Plan does not reimburse for the cost of warranty or extended warranty.
  3. The university’s insurance coverage also provides for payments for rental items if necessary for continued operations until the lost/damaged property can be restored.
  4. The university’s insurance coverage also includes the cost of damage evaluation/assessment performed by a qualified technician.
  5. The university’s property insurance policy specifically excludes coverage for employee dishonesty, unexplained (mysterious) disappearances, losses and shortages disclosed when taking inventories, normal wear and tear, deterioration, rust, corrosion, faulty design, material, workmanship, and latent defect.

Documents for Settling Equipment Loss Claim

The following documentation is required by the insurance carrier in order to settle a claim:

  1. It must be established that the property was lost/damaged due to an accident or unexpected event, such as fire, theft, water, lightning, or vandalism.
  2. Proof that the lost/damaged item was in the department’s possession at the time of the loss/damage.
  3. The lost/damaged item has been replaced or repaired. (See the “Property Insurance Loss/Damage Claim Checklist ” for specific details that the Office of Risk Management must consider when reviewing and processing property claims.)
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