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A "contract" is an agreement between two or more parties that creates obligations that are enforceable or otherwise recognized by law. This includes, but is not limited to any document that has terms and conditions, leases, letters of agreement, memoranda of understanding, letters of intent and interagency of intra-system agreements.
A contract is required if the subject matter of the transaction involves:
- Human performance that renders a service on campus, or
- An off-campus event that requires facilities, catering or service specifically for UHD.
A contract is not required if the purchase:
- Is for commonly available goods, such as office supplies,
- Is for a nominal service such as a typewriter repair,
- Can be made through the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts or DIRect (DIR). [Note: Contact the Purchasing Department (713) 221-8607 to determine the availability of this option.],
- Is off-campus, not associated with a major UHD event and not specifically for UHD, i.e., is available to the general public at the same time, or
- Is for travel arrangements made through UHD's Travel Office for a guest speaker or consultant AND no additional monies will be paid or reimbursed to the individual.
Policies or State of Texas law do not allow the following:
Policies and procedures require the following:
Allow Yourself Enough time to Complete the Contracting Process
- Departments should have all standard contract documents in order and submitted for UHD authorized signature at least 5 business days prior to the start date for services if using an OGC standard form of agreement.
- The contract must be fully executed on or before the date services begins.
- The earliest day a contract can begin is the “date of full execution of the agreement”.
- Texas Market Place ($25,000 or more): Expect the procurement process to take a minimum of 30 calendar days prior to the start date of services.
- Consulting contracts over $25,000 must be published in the Texas Register a minimum of 30 days prior to execution of the contract (Processed through the Office of General Counsel)
All Non-Standard, Vendor or Revised Contracts Must Be Reviewed by the Office of General Counsel (OGC)
- OGC is allowed 20 days to review the contract, but in some instances, it may take longer.
- Allow enough time for the contract to be approved, revised and be fully executed by the requested date.
- You cannot add to, change or delete the terms of an OGC approved contract.
Facsimile Contracts Are the Exception As Opposed to the Rule
Facsimile contracts should only be executed in certain limited situations to allow the performance of the contract to begin. If the contract is executed via fax:
- An original signature contract must be submitted to the administrative file within 10 business days after the faxed contract has been executed (SAM - 3. General Provisions and 3.1 Contract Management).
- The same signatories who signed the faxed contract must sign the original signature contracts.
- The original signature contract must have the same signature date that appears on the faxed contract.
The contracting package is not complete until an original signature contract, with the correct signatories and the correct signature dates has been received by the Contract Administration Office.
Contracts Can Be Amended, But There Are Limitation
- The contract must still be in effect. You cannot amend an expired contract.
- You can increase the dollar value of the contract by 25%. Beyond that dollar value, you are more than likely contracting for a substantially different scope of work.
- The amendment must go through the same process as the original contract.
- The amendment must be executed by the same signatories or same signatory position.
Miscellaneous Items to Keep In Mind
- Complete three (3) sets of original signature contract packages. One each for the vendor, your office and the Contract Administration Office.
- Consider multiple year contracting if you contract for the same service from the same vendor on an annual basis. You can sign contracts for up to five (5) years.
- The Nonresident Alien form is attached to the contract and signed only if it is applicable to the person.
- There should be no “white-outs” on the contracts.
- Other than initialing OGC revisions, the signature and the date, there should be no hand writing on the contracts.
- The earliest start date for a contract is “the date of full execution of the contract, i.e. the date all required and authorized parties have signed the contract.
Documents Used in the Contracting Process
Last updated or reviewed on 7/26/11