1278 - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Policy on Departmental Evaluation of Equipment



This policy is intended to minimize the risk when acquiring unpurchased equipment to be evaluated for potential use.


Policy Statement

Departments may wish to evaluate equipment without incurring an obligation to purchase it. This type of request is more frequent in departments in which students may be using the equipment or in research situations that require calibration to very close tolerances. The department may request a demonstration model to evaluate at no obligation to the University to purchase or lease the equipment. The University may accept this equipment to be placed in the requesting department for a specified period of time. Such requests by departments must be made before placement of the equipment and must conform to the agreement guidelines and conditions of this policy statement.

When a vendor offers equipment for evaluation and the department is willing to have the equipment installed for evaluation purposes, the department should work out the agreement using the following basic guidelines:

  1. Equipment must be adequately identified and described, giving model and serial numbers.
  2. All freight charges are to be paid by the vendor.
  3. Insurance, if any, is the responsibility of the vendor. The University assumes no liability for the equipment. The University may agree to exercise normal operational care and to avoid abuse of the equipment.
  4. At the end of the evaluation period, the department will be responsible for crating (with crating material to be furnished by the vendor) and shipping collect by a carrier of the vendor's choice. The Central Receiving Service can provide help with this task. Alternatively the vendor may choose to have its representative pack and ship the equipment.
  5. The evaluation of equipment for a vendor does not give the vendor the permission to use the name of the University in any advertisements.

Special Situations




Additional Information

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: May I authorize the purchase of an expensive piece of equipment that has just been evaluated by the department?
A: No, the proper paperwork must be submitted to Purchasing Services to make sure the purchase is handled within State and University rules and regulations. Purchasing Services can only authorize the purchase of equipment by issue a purchase order.

Q: How long am I allowed to keep equipment for evaluation?
A: Generally, it depends on the arrangement you have with the vendor. However, the typical evaluation period is 30 days. After 30 days you should contact the vendor to make arrangements to return the equipment.

Q: What do I need to do if a vendor has brought in equipment to demonstrate and has agreed to let us keep it for a trial period?
A: You will need to contact Purchasing Services to have an evaluation agreement sent to you. You must have the company sign the agreement and forward to Purchasing Services a zero-dollar purchase requisition.

Q: What happens if the demonstration equipment I am evaluating becomes damaged, lost or stolen? Who is responsible?
A: Depending on the circumstances, the University carries the burden of risk associated with any lost or damaged equipment.

Related Requirements

External Regulations and Consequences


University Policies, Standards, and Procedures

  • Finance Policy 1212 - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Policy on Solicitation by Sales Representatives
  • Finance Policy 1214 - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Policy on Product and Service Demonstrations by Vendor
  • Finance Procedure 1214.1 - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Procedure on Accepting Vendor Product and Service Demonstrations

Contact Information

Policy Contact
Subject Contact Telephone Fax E-Mail
Departmental Evaluation of Equipment Purchasing Services - Goods 919-962-3774 919-962-0636 purchasing_team@unc.edu



  • Jan. 9, 2018: Changed FAQ on trial period purchase to say, "You must have the company sign the agreement and forward to Purchasing Services a zero-dollar purchase requisition" (from previous 'no dollar').
  • October 1, 2014: Updated references to requisitions.
  • February 12, 2004
Print Article


Article ID: 131458
Thu 4/8/21 9:09 PM
Tue 10/31/23 1:20 PM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
Director of Purchasing Services
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
03/04/2021 12:00 AM
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
03/04/2020 12:00 AM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
03/04/2020 12:00 AM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
03/04/2020 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
03/01/1998 12:00 AM