University Support Groups


The University and the Board of Regents are indebted to volunteer groups and non-profit organizations for their invaluable assistance in fundraising, public outreach and other aspects of support for the University’s mission. As a public trust and as the beneficiary of these fundraising and outreach activities, the University is obligated to assure that the funds raised and the activities conducted on its behalf meet the required legal and fiduciary standards, and exemplify prudent business practices. To this end, The Regents issued the Policy on Support Groups, Campus Foundations and Alumni Associations in September 1995.

This policy is set forth to enlist the vitally important volunteer leadership of support groups in its implementation and in the University’s stewardship of activities conducted in its name. The President or Chancellor may establish additional operational conditions, as appropriate, consistent with the Policy.

Volunteer groups and nonprofit organizations may join with UCSF faculty and staff to provide financial or other support for the benefit of UCSF. These support groups provide valuable assistance in fundraising, public outreach, and other services for the University’s mission. Because support groups operate on behalf of University programs, The Regents of the University of California have established a systemwide policy and administrative guidelines (see References) to ensure that legal requirements are met, University resources are used appropriately, and gifts to benefit University programs are expended according to donors’ wishes and the terms of individual gifts. This policy was derived from the UC systemwide policy and administrative guidelines and is specific to UCSF.

Demographic Information

Name, date of birth, gender, ethnicity, insurance status, address and other contact information; exclusive of information about illness or treatment.


The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. A federal privacy law.

Protected Health Information (PHI)

Any individually identifiable health information transmitted by electronic media, maintained in electronic media, or transmitted or maintained in any other form or medium. Records covered by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) are excluded from the definition of PHI.

Support Group

A support group is any group, organization, foundation, or association other than a Campus Alumni Association or Campus Foundation: (1) whose primary purpose is to provide assistance through fundraising, public outreach, and other activities in support of the University's mission; or (2) whose representatives or activities make the entity indistinguishable from the University itself; or (3) that acts as an agent of or intermediary for the University. Support groups typically operate in affiliation or collaboration with the University to raise gift funds and/or to provide public support for the teaching, research, patient care, and public service programs of the University. These groups may be structured as unincorporated organizations, medical faculty organizations, and advisory groups. The University requires that support groups established after 1996 not be incorporated. Such support groups shall be organized and operated so that contributions to or through them to the University or the Campus Foundation shall be deemed tax deductible contributions under relevant provisions of State and federal tax law. Gifts to benefit the programs of non-tax-exempt support groups shall be made to The Regents or to the Campus Foundation. Gifts to tax-exempt organizations shall be handled as outlined in this policy.

UCSF Foundation

A non-profit, public benefit corporation established to receive, manage, and administer gifts, bequests, and trusts on behalf of UCSF and to foster involvement of private citizens who wish to further the excellence of UCSF through philanthropic support. The UCSF Foundation, as the single designated campus foundation, is the only entity permitted by The Regents of the University of California to hold funds for investment purposes for UCSF.


The Chancellor is responsible for ensuring that adequate controls and processes are in place to determine that support groups are in compliance with this policy.Each recognized support group shall be notified in writing annually that compliance with this and any other University policies and campus regulations referenced herein are a condition of continued recognition.

B. The Chancellor shall designate an official of the campus unit that benefits from the support group to ensure that the support group is in compliance with this policy and related policies and regulations, or may designate another campus official as having those responsibilities.

C. Each campus shall determine the procedures necessary for support groups to be officially recognized, consistent with this policy. (See Section III. A. 1.) The Chancellor may stipulate additional and more stringent requirements than stated in this policy, but at no time may a campus adopt rules that effectively void or liberalize this policy and its requirements.

D. University Advancement and Planning shall annually publish a list of all officially recognized support groups, which shall be maintained in the campus office responsible for support group compliance.

E.The Chancellor shall forward to the President a support group report for the previous fiscal year by February 15th of each year.The report shall include a numerical summary of support groups in the following categories, an annotated list with the names of the groups in each category, the dues schedule for each group, and comments as appropriate on the status of each group:

1.Entities in compliance or substantial compliance

2.Entities in compliance but operating under exceptional agreements

3.Entities with compliance pending

4.Entities applying for support group status

5.Entities pending dissolution

6.Entities affiliated under an approved operating agreement

7.Entities moving to an operating agreement

8.Entities requiring support group determination

9.Entities known to be out of compliance

10.Total number of support groups

Other Entities

11.Campus-administered programs/Donor Clubs

12.Inactive groups that may resume support group activities

F.University Advancement and Planning shall maintain a list of all support group accounts with financial institutions approved pursuant to Section III.5.b. andc. above, and shall forward a copy of this list to the Director of Financial Controls and Accountability in the Office of the President by February 15th each year.The list must include all data elements outlined in Section III.A.1.h.

G. Each campus shall establish procedures to de-certify a support group that is not in compliance with requirements of this Policy.

H. At the request of the Chancellor, the President may consider an exception to the requirements of this policy based on a particular situation. However, no such exception shall void or liberalize the requirements for accounts with financial institutions to be approved pursuant to Section III.E.5.b and c, above.The Chancellor shall recommend such an exception to the President in a letter that identifies the specific exception being requested and provides sufficient justification for approval.



All support groups with accounts maintained by the University or the Campus Foundation shall comply with the Policy for Handling Cash and Cash Equivalents (BUS 49).

Each support group that maintains an account with any form of financial intermediary (i.e., an account other than a University- or Campus Foundation-managed agency account) shall conform to the following provisions:

  1. Maintain written evidence of approval from the Chancellor (or designee) to hold a specific account.

  2. Obtain and maintain its own taxpayer identification number.

  3. For non-tax-exempt organizations using an outside bank account, establish only a single demand-deposit (i.e., checking) account.

  4. For tax-exempt organizations, limit outside bank accounts to two demand-deposit (i.e., checking) accounts at a single financial institution, one exclusively for membership dues transactions, if appropriate; the second for receipt of gifts and non-membership related transactions. Savings, money market or equivalent accounts in the same institution are permissible so long as: (a) the principal is not put at risk (e.g., an account must be insured); and (b) the funds are not invested for a fixed duration that would interfere with meeting the transfer requirements. Gift funds must be transferred to the University or to the Campus Foundation according to the schedule set out in the Administrative Guidelines for Support Groups (Sections IV.A.4 and IV.A.9).

  5. Maintain a written record of authorized check signers. Such authorizations shall be approved by the governing board (if any), and any changes to the list of authorized signers shall be made on a timely basis.

  6. Assure that bank statements are delivered directly by the bank to an identified individual who is not an authorized check signer or who does not prepare checks for signature, and who is responsible for promptly reconciling the account each month.

  7. Assure that the monthly bank reconciliation statement is reviewed on a timely basis by an individual who accepts ultimate responsibility for the organization's funds.

  8. Establish written cash receipting and depositing procedures.

  9. Require two signatures on all checks in excess of $1,000.

  10. Establish a mechanism to recognize in a timely manner when accumulated cash meets the requirement for transfer to the University.