Policy VII-2.10-GC

UMGC Policy on Employment of Members of the Same Family (Nepotism)

(Approved by USM BOR on April 21, 2017; UMGC President on July 1, 2017)

  1. Purpose and Applicability

    This policy applies to Nonexempt, Exempt and Overseas Staff employees on Regular and Contingent Status and permits members of the same family to be employed by University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) while promoting fairness and preventing conflicts of interest.  Nonexempt Staff employees who are included in the representation of the collective bargaining unit are subject to the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and applicable UMGC HR Policies; where there is a conflict between the two, the MOU will prevail.

  2. Definitions

    1. Family member includes:

      1. The employee's spouse, children or step-children;

      2. A parent of the employee or the employee's spouse;

      3. A brother or sister of the employee or the employee's spouse;

      4. Grandparents or grandchildren of employee or the employee's spouse;

      5. Aunts and uncles of the employee or the employee's spouse;

      6. Nephews and nieces of the employee or the employee's spouse;

      7. Brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law of employee or spouse; and

      8. Sons-in-law and daughters-in-law of the employee or the employee's spouse.

    2. Personal relationship: Includes, but is not limited to, relationships by virtue of blood, marriage, adoption, cohabitation or any such other relationship that would give rise to a substantial appearance of impropriety or lack of reasonable objectiveness if a supervisor-subordinate relationship existed, as determined by the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) or designee.

    3. Supervisor-subordinate relationship: A relationship in which one (1) employee reports to another employee or one employee otherwise participates directly in making personnel decisions regarding another employee.

  3. General

    1. Members of the same family are eligible for employment in UMGC. However, a supervisor-subordinate relationship shall not exist between family members nor shall one (1) member of a family assume for the other the role of advocate or judge with respect to conditions of employment or promotion.

    2. An employee who engages in a personal relationship with another employee with whom the employee has a supervisor-subordinate relationship is encouraged to contact the CHRO or designee as soon as the personal relationship comes into existence.  If an employee raises concern that a UMGC employee has a personal relationship with another employee with whom the employee has a supervisor-subordinate relationship, the CHRO or designee will determine whether the relationship gives rise to a substantial appearance of impropriety or lack of reasonable objectiveness and may take action as set forth in Sections IV and V below.

  4. Family Members Recommended to Work for the Same Supervisor

    When members of the same family are recommended to work for the same supervisor, the arrangement must be approved in advance by the CHRO. No appointment of a family member may be made without such prior approval.  Failure of an employee to disclose family relationships may result in disciplinary action.

  5. Development of a Supervisor-Subordinate Relationship After Employment

    1. If a supervisor-subordinate relationship between family members develops during employment, the family members must notify the CHRO immediately.  UMGC shall take action to ensure that the supervisor-subordinate relationship ends; such action may include transfer, reassignment or removal of one or more family members. Failure of the employees to disclose family relationships may result in disciplinary action.

    2. If actions to avoid a supervisor-subordinate relationship between family members are not feasible, the next highest administrative supervisor of the employees may request an exception to the prohibition against such employment.  The request shall be made in writing to the CHRO and shall address:

      1. The unique circumstances that prevent actions to avoid a supervisor-subordinate relationship among the family member employees;

      2. The specialized qualifications of the family member employees or other factors that demonstrate why their continued employment is in the best interest of the UMGC despite the supervisor-subordinate relationship; and

      3. Proposed measures to restrict participation of the supervising family member in any personnel actions affecting the subordinate family member, including specific alternative procedures for the ongoing supervision and evaluation of the family member.

    3. Family members may not be employed in a supervisor-subordinate relationship without the approval of such a request by the CHRO.

Implementation Procedures

The UMGC President has designated the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) to administer this policy; to develop procedures as necessary to implement this policy; to communicate this policy to the UMGC community; and to post the policy and any applicable procedures on the UMGC website.

Replacement for:

  • USM BOR VII-2.10: Policy on Employment of Members of the Same Family (Nepotism)

  • UMGC Policy 410.20: Appointments-Employment of Members of Same Family

  • UMGC OS Policy 6.00: Policy on Employment of Family Members (Nepotism)