Insurance for Grad Groups

Accidents can happen, so Grad Groups must have adequate insurance to cover their activities. One of the benefits of affiliating with GSA is that we provide you with public liability insurance.

All events and activities must be registered at least two weeks in advance. If you do not register your event in time, you may not be covered by our insurance and may not be able to claim reimbursement. 

Public liability insurance (PLI)

GSA provides Grad Groups with public liability insurance, designed to help protect a Grad Group against claims of personal injury or property damage that third parties may suffer or allege to suffer as a result of a Grad Group’s activities or negligence.

To be covered by GSA’s public liability insurance, Grad Groups must:

  • Register each event or activity at least two weeks in advance
  • Meet health and safety guidelines
  • Take appropriate safety precautions
  • Follow GSA’s insurance terms and conditions

GSA cannot guarantee the decisions of its insurance company regarding any claims. Please see the Terms and Conditions section below for further information.

Other insurance needs

Grad Groups undertaking sports events may wish to consider sports and personal accident insurance in addition to public liability insurance. The University has a personal accident policy, but access to it for events is managed by Melbourne University Sport.

GSA recommends that all Grad Groups discuss insurance for sporting events with Melbourne University Sport, and book using their venues on the Parkville campus.

Grad Groups may require insurance beyond public liability insurance under certain circumstances. GSA is not able to provide legal advice on this matter, and recommends consulting (Our Community) for more information.

What to do in case of emergency

Step one: Contact GSA

No matter how far-fetched a claim may appear, whether you believe it happened or not, it is not something to ignore. Your group must get in touch with the GSA at the earliest possible regarding the claim and we will liaise with the insurer accordingly.

Step two: Do not admit liability (fault)

You should never admit or agree to liability for any situation nor offer any form of compensation without consulting GSA first. Doing so could affect the insurer’s ability to defend the case and this could leave GSA open to legal action for damages. It could be almost impossible to argue your case if guilt has already been admitted. Any correspondence regarding this should be immediately passed to GSA.

Step three: Respond only on advisement

During the process of investigation or negotiation, your group may receive correspondence from the third party’s representative (e.g. lawyer) or in the form of a summons or notice of prosecution. In this case, do not respond personally or acknowledge anything, get in touch with the GSA immediately.

Step four: Reflect and evaluate

The final thing you should do is to take action towards ensuring that similar incident does not happen again. Regular risk assessments will help and better prepare your group when organising future events. Keeping relevant staff and stakeholders informed about safety and security procedures will also help to prevent further incidents occurring.

To lodge a claim

To lodge a claim following a camping activity, you have to provide us with the following with at least 14 days’ notice before the event: Copy of food plan; Copy of first aid certificate; Participant list; Emergency plan.

For all events, we recommend that you maintain an event plan. Discuss the plan with any venue to ensure that adequate precautions are taken to provide for the health and safety of attendees. The event organiser should ensure that all event plans and compliance papers are kept at the event and can be inspected by University staff or relevant authorities.

To lodge a claim, Grad Groups will need to declare that they have reviewed and have followed and implemented the safety planning as outlined in University policies: Events Health and Safety Management; Event Risk Assessment & Authorisation Form; Alcohol Safety Checklist; Terms and Conditions for Events in the Campus Grounds; and the Student Clubs Venue Bookings Terms and Conditions

GSA must be kept apprised of any relevant circumstances leading up to a claim prior to the claim being lodges, so that it can notify its insurance company.

The Grad Group must be aware that GSA cannot guarantee how its insurance company will rule on any claims made.

Once a claim is lodged and GSA’s insurance company responds, the GSA Executive will discuss the matter. It is at the discretion of the GSA Executive to cover any shortfall between the insurance and legal or other expenses.

If your Grad Group fails to satisfy any of these terms and conditions for an event, GSA has the right not to extend its public liability insurance cover to your Grad Group’s event.

Terms and Conditions

One of the benefits of affiliating to GSA is that affiliated Grad Groups are automatically covered by GSA’s $20 million public liability insurance policy.

Public liability insurance is designed to help protect a Grad Group against claims of personal injury or property damage that third parties may suffer or allege to suffer as a result of your group’s activities or negligence.

If a Grad Group wishes to lodge a claim following any event, however, they will need to meet these terms and conditions for insurance cover.

  1. To make a claim, a Grad Group must identify:
    • The event
    • The number of attendees/participant list
    • Date and time of the activity
    • Location/venue
    • An event manager and their contact details
  2. The event must be a planned activity of the Grad Group.
  3. Grad Groups must meet the minimum health and safety guidelines as outlined in University of Melbourne policy: Events Health and Safety Management and Risk Assessment and Authorisation Form.
  4. For an event held on the University Campus Grounds, the event must comply with the Terms and Conditions for Events in the Campus Grounds.
  5. Events involving alcohol must comply with the University’s Alcohol Management and Safety Checklist. Any events involving alcohol or food must be conducted safely. Under the University’s alcohol management (6.3) you are required to ensure that an appropriate number of trained staff or committee members are present at all times.
  6. If your group is selling alcohol it must comply with the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998.
  7. Review the Victorian Government’s application for a temporary liquour license. Where required, you must have a temporary license in place for the event if you lodge a claim with GSA.
  8. If your Grad Group is selling food in fundraising, it must comply with the Food Act 1984 as well as the requirements of food premise registration with the relevant Council. Review Victoria’s Food Act for Fundraising.
  9. Events involving food must have a documented food plan and/or registration with the Council where required. If you are serving food, please read the Melbourne City Guide to Food Hygiene. We recommend filling out a foodhandling plan for any events involving food – the department of health provides templates.
  10. If you are managing a camping activity, you must take extra precautions to ensure the following:
    • A first aider is present at all times
    • All participants are accounted for in a participant list
    • You have documented an emergency plan for the camping ground or have been provided with one
    • There is a foodhandling plan
  11. To lodge a claim following a camping activity, you have to provide us with the following:
    • Copy of food plan
    • Copy of first aid certificate
    • Participant list
    • Emergency plan
  12. For all events, we recommend that you maintain an event plan. Discuss the plan with any venue to ensure that adequate precautions are taken to provide for the health and safety of attendees. The event manager should ensure that all event plans and compliance papers are kept at the event and can be inspected by University staff or relevant authorities.
  13. To lodge a claim, Grad Groups will need to declare that they have reviewed and have followed and implemented the safety planning as outlined in University policies:
  14. Claims must be lodged online as early as possible after an event and all relevant paperwork included before they can be processed and a claim for insurance begun. GSA will not accept claims made more than 48 hours after an event unless there is a compelling reason.
  15. GSA must be kept apprised of any relevant circumstances leading up to a claim prior to the claim being lodges, so that it can notify its insurance company.
  16. The Grad Group must be aware that GSA cannot guarantee that the insurance company will insure an event.
  17. Once a claim is lodged and GSA’s insurance company responds, the GSA Executive will discuss the matter. It is at the discretion of the Executive to cover any shortfall between the insurance and legal or other expenses.