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Employment of Relatives

Talent and Culture
Employment of Relatives
Responsible Unit: Talent and Culture
Effective: September 12, 2019
Revision History: November 13, 2013; September 12, 2019
Review Date: N/A

General Information

Reason for This Procedure

To outline the manner in which West Virginia University deals with the employment of relatives of current WVU employees.

This Procedure Applies To

This procedure applies to all faculty, faculty equivalent/academic professionals (FE/AP), classified and non-classified employees, and student workers at West Virginia University, including those on the divisional campuses. 


Relative -  Any person who is related to, who resides with, or has an intimate relationship with a WVU employee. Generally, relatives include those who are related by blood, law, or marriage as a spouse, parent, child, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, or first cousin.

Employment Decisions -  Any decision regarding hiring, retention, transfer, promotion, salary, performance reviews, disciplinary actions, working conditions, assignment of resources or leave requests.

Management Plan - An agreed plan that outlines supervision and employment decision-making conditions that will mitigate possible conflicts with this procedure, ensuring, to the extent possible, that the Employee's actions do not violate the West Virginia Ethics Act, BOG Rule 1.4 Ethics, Conflicts of Interest and Outside Consulting Arrangements, this procedure, or any other relevant laws, regulations, policies, or procedures. There will be an agreed upon review schedule established within the plan for appropriate review and maintenance.

Supervisory Employee -  A WVU employee who is authorized to make hiring or other employment decisions for a department or unit.


An employee may not initiate or participate in an institutional or institutional affiliate, (as defined within WVU BOG Rule 3.1) employment decision involving a direct benefit to a relative, nor may they accept a direct benefit from a relative at the institution or institutional affiliate. Such employment decisions include, but are not limited to, hiring, retention, transfer, promotion, appointment to an interim or acting position, salary, performance reviews, disciplinary action, assignment of resources, and leave requests. 

Student workers who are relatives are also subject to the provisions of this procedure. 

Decisions regarding student work study assignments or payment to students in the form of scholarships shall not be interpreted as a violation of this procedure.


Responsibility for interpretation of this administrative procedure rests with the Vice President for Talent & Culture or his/her designee. 

A supervisory employee, prior to any offer of employment to an internal or external applicant, must complete and provide a signed statement to the Division of Talent & Culture, Talent Strategy Unit, certifying that he/she is not hiring a relative. 

Deans/directors and their business officers are responsible for monitoring changes in reporting lines of authority to ensure compliance by the colleges and departments with this procedure.  When there is a change in circumstances during the course of employment that may create a conflict with this procedure, the potential conflict of interest should be reported immediately to the Dean/Director and Employee Relations for the creation and coordination of a management plan.

Any employee with knowledge of a potential conflict related to the employment of relatives should report the situation to their Dean/Director and/or Employee Relations for further review and resolution.


Additional information or questions regarding this procedure should be directed to Employee Relations in the Division of Talent & Culture at (304) 293-5700 ext. 5, or at

Related Documents

West Virginia Ethics Commission
WVU Board of Governors Talent and Culture Rule 3.1
WVU Board of Governors Governance Rule 1.4 Ethics, Conflicts of Interest, and Outside Consulting Arrangements

Effective: September 12, 2019