Except as prohibited by the laws of the State of Oklahoma, relationship by consanguinity (blood) or by affinity (marriage) shall not, in itself, be a bar to appointment, employment, or advancement by at the University of Oklahoma nor (or, in the case of faculty members), to eligibility for tenure of persons so related.  The University recognizes, however, that there is an inherent conflict of interest when an employee makes hiring, promotion, or salary decisions about a family member, although there may be extremely rare circumstances when the potential benefit to the University in having an employee supervise a family member outweighs the potential harm.


But Therefore, no two persons who are related by affinity or consanguinity or affinity within the third degree shall be given positions in which either one is directly responsible for making recommendations regarding employment, promotion, salary, or tenure for the other; nor shall either of two persons so related who hold positions in the same budgetary unit be appointed (or, as in the case of members of Committee A of an academic unit, elected) to an executive or administrative position in that unit or to a position involving administrative responsibility over it, as long as the other person remains in the unit, without first receiving the written approval of a waiver that has been recommended by the Senior Vice President and Provost, or the appropriate vice president, and the President and approved by the Board of Regents.  In recommending the waiver, the Senior Vice President and Provost or the appropriate vice president must make a written statement of the facts that have led him/her to conclude that the benefit to the University in granting the waiver outweighs the potential harm.  In the event a waiver is granted, performance evaluations and recommendations for compensation and promotion will be made by one not related to the individual being evaluated.  In addition, the Senior Vice President and Provost or the appropriate vice president must propose in writing a means by which a qualified, objective person, unrelated to the employee at issue, shall make performance evaluations and recommendations for compensation, promotion, and awards for that employee and state in writing how that means will avoid the conflict of interest.  The statement and proposal for supervision shall be made part of the Regents agenda item. Further, a salary increase above the increase granted to all University employees in similar positions will not be granted to an employee who has been granted a waiver under this policy unless it has been approved by the applicable Provost and Senior Vice President or appropriate vice president and the President of the University.  In the case where this policy is made applicable by a related party being elected to Committee A of an academic unit, approval of the Board of Regents is not required; however, all other provisions of this policy will continue to apply.


It is the responsibility of the head of the budget unit to seek a waiver before offering employment to any person whose employment without a waiver would violate this policy, and the willful failure to follow this policy may result in disciplinary action against the head of the budget unit.  Notwithstanding any other provision of this policy, a conditional hire, prior to approval of the Board of Regents, may be made pursuant to this policy if deemed necessary for legitimate academic or business reasons if justified in writing by the appropriate vice president.  At the next regular meeting of the Board of Regents, the written justification and the conditional hire will be considered by the Board of Regents.


The Board of Regents will be notified at the next meeting of any waivers.


Relatives that are within the third degree of relationship to an employee by blood or marriage are as follows consanguinity or affinity include the following:  spouse; parent; parent of spouse; grandparent; grandparent of spouse; great-grandparent; great grandparent of spouse; parent, grandparent or great-grandparent of spouse; uncle or aunt; uncle or aunt of spouse; brother or sister; brother or sister of spouse; brother-in-law or sister-in-law; niece or nephew; spouse of niece or nephew; son or daughter; son-in-law or daughter-in-law; grandson or granddaughter or their spouse; grandson or granddaughter’s spouse; and great grandson or great granddaughter or their spouse  and great grandson’s or great granddaughter’s spouse.  For purposes of this policy, step and half relatives are considered to be related by affinity.