Risk Management & Insurance


Backhuysen, Ludolf - Christ in the Storm on the Sea of Galilee

Boat Charters

A contract to lease a non-owned boat for the University’s exclusive use is a boat charter. Departments that intend to charter a boat to conduct University business must process their application through UCSB Procurement Services and the campus Risk Management Office. Approval of boat charters is contingent upon the boat operator meeting UC’s requirements for vessel charters. The boat charter process begins when a department submits a Contract Request Form in Gateway to Procurement Services. The Gateway order must eventually contain the following documents:

  • The Report of Vessel Charter must be completed by the department and submitted to the campus Risk Management Office and Procurement Services. Risk Management will approve the charter, and sign the Report of Vessel Charter, after the following have been submitted, reviewed and approved.
  • A copy of boat’s current Marine Survey for the vessel to be obtained by department from boat owner.
  • A copy of boat’s current U.S. Coast Guard Inspection Report for the vessel to be obtained by department from boat owner.
  • A description of the Charter Itinerary, to include:
              •   the date(s)
              •   charter starting point
              •   description of route to be taken during the charter
              •   charter end point
              •   number of passengers
                    (break down into number of faculty, staff, students, guests (non-University personnel) and crew).
  • A copy of the boat owner’s current Certificate of Insurance showing compliance with UC’s insurance requirements (described below); to be obtained by department from boat owner.
  • Procurement Services will draft a Vessel Charter Agreement based on the Report of Vessel Charter and Charter Itinerary provided by the department. Procurement Services will ask the department to obtain the boat owner’s signature on the Vessel Charter Agreement prior to executing it and issuing the Purchase Order.

UC Waiver of Liability Requirement

The UC Waiver of Liability must be signed by all people participating in UC boat charters except for UC employees in the course and scope of their employment. It is the responsibility of the department that is sponsoring the boat charter to prepare, collect and maintain the required waivers. Go to Waiver of Liability for information.

Boat Charter Insurance Requirements

The University requires that vessel chartered by the University have Protection & Indemnity Insurance with Collision Liability Coverage as follows:

    1 - 10 passengers:    $5,000,000
    10+ passengers:     $10,000,000
    23+ passengers:     $15,000,000
    Not Exceeding 30’:      $500,000
    Exceeding 30’:           $1,000,000

Proof of coverage must be submitted in the form of a Certificate of Insurance that names The Regents of the University of California as the certificate holder and as additional insured. The boat operator’s insurance shall be primary and not excess of or contributing with any insurance or self-insurance that may be maintained by The Regents. The coverage shall also contain a waiver of subrogation in favor of The Regents on the boat operator’s Hull & Machinery policy.

Best Practices for Boat Charters

The University requires that UC vessel charters comply with the vessel charter best practices to the extent possible. These include the following:

  • The vessel shall have a U.S. Coast Guard Inspection (as required for the vessel).
  • It shall be less than twenty-five (25) years of age.
  • It shall be of steel or fiberglass construction and powered by marine diesel engines.
  • It shall have had a survey within the past two years and shall be in compliance with any survey recommendations.
  • It shall have the capability to handle the intended charter.
  • The captain shall have a professional license with a least ten (10) years experience. The number and experience of the crew shall be appropriate for the intended purpose of the charter. A charter agreement between UC and vessel owner shall specify the responsibilities of vessel owner and UC.

Alternatives to Boat Charters

It is difficult to charter a boat. There are many requirements that the University asks boat charter operators to meet because boat travel can be hazardous and the University wants the boats that it charters for its exclusive use to be professionally operated and maintained, and properly insured. However, if boat transportation is required, and the boat has not been hired by the University for its exclusive use, there are a couple of alternatives to chartering boats.

One alternative allows a department to use University funds to buy tickets on a boat (to go to the Channel Islands, to cruise the Santa Barbara Channel, etc.) if the following conditions are met:

  • The boat providing the service must be a regularly-scheduled service and the University trip must occur at a regularly-scheduled time.
  • Passage on the boat must be open and available to the general public and the public must be able to purchase tickets on the boat the University is using.
  • It is preferable that cash be used to buy the tickets. Under no circumstances can the invoice from the boat charter company, contain any information or terms and conditions, other than the number of tickets purchased, the cost per ticket, and date of travel. There can be no contract or agreement between the boat owner and the University. Cash or the UCSB Corporate Card are the only methods available to buy tickets under these circumstances.
  • Except for UC employees in the course and scope of their employment, all people participating in boat trips paid for with University funds must sign a UC Waiver of Liability prepared, collected and maintained by the sponsoring department. Go to UCSB: Waivers of Liability for more information.

A second alternative allows departments to be involved in activities that involve boat transportation if participation in the activity is completely voluntary and participants use their own money to purchase tickets. No University funds may be used and this alternative also requires that:

  • The boat is a regularly-scheduled service (not scheduled to meet the University's needs) and available to the public at a regularly-scheduled, published time.
  • The boat is open to the public and tickets can be purchased by the public at the time the University is using the boat.
  • There are no special arrangements or any kind of written agreement between the boat owner and the University.