Retiring Assets

After equipment is no longer needed, departments are responsible for following U-M SPG 520.01 Acquisition, Use and Disposition of Property (Exclusive of Real Property).

All disposals or sales of surplus university equipment, property, and scrap material are handled through Property Disposition. When equipment is transferred to another department, retired, or disposed of, special procedures must be followed.

There are also special guidelines that must be followed if you plan to transfer or sell university property to another institution. These situations usually occur when a project director is moving to another institution and wishes to transfer the research equipment to the new institution.

Financial Operation’s policy states that equipment will only be retired when it has been sold, transferred to another institution, destroyed or scrapped. As part of the bi-annual inventory process, Property Control requires documentation to support any addition or deletion of equipment.

Transfer of property

There are special guidelines that must be followed if you plan to transfer or sell research property purchased by university grants or contracts to another institution. These situations usually occur when a project director is moving to another institution and wishes to transfer the research equipment to the new institution. Detailed guidelines can be found in Standard Practice Guideline (SPG) 520.1, Acquisition, Use, and Disposition of Property. Below is a summary version of the guidelines.

Research property being transferred to another institution:

See Standard Practice Guideline (SPG) 520.1 Acquisition, Use, and Disposition of Property and Transferring Equipment to Other Institutions for detailed procedures regarding the transfer of property to another institution.

Factors that can influence the decision to transfer research equipment:

  • Sponsor: If the sponsor retains full title to the property, then the sponsor decides whether the property may be transferred. If sponsor gives title to U-M at some future date after the termination of the grant or contract, then in the interim period both the university and sponsor may be involved in the transfer situation.
  • University of Michigan: If the university holds the title, then the decision to transfer remains a university decision.
  • Recipient institution: If the university and sponsor agree to the transfer, then the recipient institution must also agree. The recipient institution must process and return the required transfer paperwork to the university.

Situations where specialized equipment may be essential to the continuation of a project director's research at the new institution:

  • If the University of Michigan provided a portion of the funds used to purchase the equipment, the new institution will reimburse the appraised value as determined by Property Disposition.
  • The equipment is not needed for research continuing at U-M under the direction of others.

The following guidelines must be followed when research equipment is being sold:

  • Written approval for the sale of research equipment must be submitted by the department chair, unit head, dean, or director.
  • The final decision to sell rests with the executive vice president and chief financial officer.
  • Property Disposition will handle all matters concerning the sale of equipment.
  • Full payment must be received before the equipment is removed from university property.
  • The purchaser must provide a contact name, address, phone number, email, and fax number, and must sign/return the proper documents.