Policies address employment of relatives, references, outside activities and conflicts of interest

UF Human Resources would like to remind you of three policies related to employment at the University of Florida.

Employment of relatives

UF is committed to a policy of employment and advancement based on qualifications and merit and does not discriminate in favor of or against the employment of relatives (also known as nepotism). As such, all employees are subject to reporting and approval requirements regarding the hiring of relatives.

UF Regulation 1.009, Employment of Relatives, specifically prohibits the appointment of relatives or persons living in the same household to any position where a direct or indirect supervisory relationship would exist between relatives or would create a perceived or actual conflict of interest. This includes, but is not limited to appointment, compensation, assignment of work, evaluation, grants administration and sponsored research projects, and financial authority or transactions. Learn more in the “Employment of Relatives” section of this page.

Employment references

Employment references for former or current faculty and staff can provide prospective employers with useful information about a job candidate’s competitiveness for a vacancy. In keeping with Florida Statutes, Section 768.095, truthful reference information can be provided without fear of liability if the information is factual and without malicious intent or discrimination if provided about former or current employees to a prospective employer at the prospective employer’s request.

Please remember to only provide an employment reference if you have personal knowledge of the employee. Generally, only a supervisor or manager should speak on behalf of the university as an employer. For example, “Would you rehire this person?” could only be accurately answered by the person who would have rehire authority. If you are providing a reference as a colleague, rather than as a supervisor or manager, be sure that relationship is clarified.

UF’s Employee Reference Policy includes important guidance for references, such as restricting comments to those aspects of the employee’s job performance about which you have specific and personal knowledge, never disclosing medical information and not providing negative information about an employee’s job performance if you did not make the employee aware of the performance problem or behavioral concern.

Reporting outside activities and potential conflicts of interest

Additionally, all UF employees are subject to obtaining approval before beginning outside activities as well as reporting these activities and potential conflicts of interests.

A conflict of interest occurs when a person serves or represents two distinct entities or persons and must choose between two conflicting interests or loyalties. A UF employee has a conflict when his/her outside activity or financial interest could potentially interfere with their professional obligations to the university. All financial interests, including but not limited to stock, cash and LLC interests in an entity that does business with the university, should also be reported and approved by UF.

Failure to report activities or financial interests under the university’s rule or the applicable collective bargaining agreement or to follow any conditions imposed pursuant to the university’s approval of such activities or interests may be grounds for disciplinary action.

The forms, regulations and policies concerning disclosure and approval of outside activities and financial interests can be found here.