Risk Management

Risk management is a critical piece of event planning, because its purpose is to protect the program planner(s), attendees, and all volunteers and speakers. There are several forms linked below that will help you ensure the safety of all involved with your event. 

The MSU Manual of Business Procedures will also provide as a helpful guide to managing risks: MSU Manual of Business Procedures

Permission Forms

Form templates listed on this site are provided as resources and examples. While they are not required, MSU does have an expectation that some of these will be used for all events in order to mitigate risk. For a sample of the form, click on the form title.  

Parental/Guardian Consent Form for Youth Programming

All MSU programs for minor participants (under 18 years old) are encouraged to have a consent form. The purpose of this form is to ensure that participants and parents/guardians understand any risks associated with the program and agree to full participation. The form should be adapted to cover the specifics of your program, i.e. do you transport youth by bus or minivan; are they engaged in activities that have special risks associated, etc.

Media Release Form (This sample is set up two forms per page)  

Use this form if photos, video or any other kind of image recording will take place during the program and used for promotional purposes. If you do not have a signed form on file, every effort should be made to exclude that participant from all photos, video, etc.

Code of Conduct Form

Use of a signed Code of Conduct is suggested to ensure that youth participants and parents/guardians understand the behavior expectations for those who attend the program and the consequences for violating the expectations. This alleviates the challenge of someone claiming they did not understand the expectation if a behavior issue occurs.

Medical Treatment Authorization Form

A signed copy is needed for each program participant in case medical attention is needed during the program.

Contact Information Release Form

This form should be used to collect participant permission (or parent/guardian permission for youth involvement) if you plan to distribute a participant list with contact info so participants may contact each other. Creating such a list can be especially useful for helping participants arrange carpooling to and from your program.

Personal Data Sheet

Suggested for programs which allow participants a lot of autonomy in determining where they will be when. In the event a participant ends up missing, the information provided on this form can be used to identify someone.

Criminal History Check Form (MSU Extension)

If the audience is youth, MSU Extension’s Volunteer Selection Process needs to be followed to ensure that children attending programs are provided with a safe, caring environment in which to learn and have fun. A reference check and criminal history check is needed for all volunteers and staff who will be in prolonged and/or unsupervised settings with children.

MSU Extension is able to conduct a criminal history check through the Internet Criminal History Access Tool (ICHAT). This is a free service provided by the Michigan State Police. Information on ICHAT includes only criminal convictions in the State of Michigan.

To access this service, users must obtain an agency code number from the Michigan State Police by faxing the following information with a request for access to the attention of Ted Kilvington at (517) 322-0635

  • Organization Name
  • Address
  • Telephone number
  • Federal ID (for government agencies and school districts)
  • A copy of the 501(c)3 certificate indicating non-profit status
  • Name of contact person

An Agency Code will be issued along with information to access the system. Once registered, background checks may be processed immediately through the ICHAT Web site. The results of the criminal history check should be treated with confidentiality.

For any questions about this service, call 517-322-5067 or email cjicichathelp@michigan.gov.

MSU Policy Information Related to Risk Management

The following information outlines policies and risk management options.

Incident Report Form (also known as an Injury/Property Damage Report Form)

Accidents involving personal bodily injury or property damage that may give rise to a claim should be reported immediately. A copy of the Incident Report Form should be given to the Office of Risk Management and Insurance as soon as possible, with a copy of the local police or investigator’s report if available. Please view MSU's Accident Reporting Procedures for MSU employees, or click here for non-MSU employees: Injury/Property Damage Report

Transportation Policy – Vehicle Restrictions

Use of 12- and 15-passenger vans is prohibited. More information on vehicle restrictions can be found in Volume 1 of the MSU Manual of Business Procedures.


Drivers transporting youth on behalf of MSU must be 21 years of age or older. Verification of a valid driver’s license and current liability insurance is required for any adult driver. 

Insurance Coverage Information

It is important to understand the types of insurance coverage that is available and which insurance is appropriate in various situations. The two basic types of insurance that exist are:

Liability Insurance is provided to MSU employees or volunteers deemed by Michigan State University to be acting within the scope of their duties of performing services for the University. This insurance protects MSU volunteers and employees in the event they would be sued for claims of negligent acts that result in bodily injury to someone else, personal injury such as libel or slander, or damage to property of others. Liability insurance coverage is automatic and is provided for all who are registered as MSU volunteers or employed by MSU. 

When transporting others to and from an MSU program in privately owned vehicles, MSU liability insurance coverage is provided as a secondary insurance. That means that the insurance maintained by the person who owns the vehicle would provide the first insurance coverage and the MSU insurance be the second coverage. Coverage by the liability policy means that the liability insurance will provide defense in court for a registered volunteer or employee to cover allegations of a negligent act even through the allegations may be fraudulent or false, and will pay the damages in which the covered insuree is legally liable to pay. Report any incident that involves bodily injury or property damage which may give rise to a claim immediately in a written report. You should cover as much information as possible about the incident. Follow up contact will then come from MSU directly to the parties named in the incident report.

Accident and Illness Insurance is not provided by Michigan State University to program participants or volunteer workers and is not mandatory. Programs or groups can take out a special policy available through some insurance companies. Illness coverage depends on the type of coverage selected. Eligible covered expenses are paid in excess of any other valid and collectible insurance. Overviews of two known options are described below

Michigan State University Camp Insurance

All students enrolled into the camp insurance program will be covered for accidental injury while participating in sports/academic camps at Michigan State University. If you have questions regarding this coverage, please contact Risk Management and Insurance at 517-355-5022.

To enroll, provide the following information to Risk Management & Insurance at riskmgmt@msu.edu and include:

  • University Account #
  • Dates of the Camp
  • Title of the Camp
  • Department Contact Name, Phone & Email
  • List of the Campers

Once the above information is received, the campers will be enrolled and you will receive an email confirming the enrollment. The fee for the insurance is $1.40 per camper/per camp. For more detailed information, visit http://rmi.msu.edu/insurance/camp.html.

Certificate of Insurance Request