Legal agreements registration

Records & Information is responsible for registering legal agreements and contracts into Content Manager – the University Legal Agreements Register.

What is an agreement?

When we talk about an agreement we are usually referring to a contract, which, according to the University policy MPF1247, is:

An agreement or other instrument, whether oral or in writing, between the University and another party, whether executed as a contract or as a deed, that creates obligations for performance by the University, whether at law or in broader reputational context, and rights exercisable by the University against that other party.

What types of agreements are captured into the Register?

Records and Information (R&I) capture the following types of agreements into the University Legal Agreements Register:

TypeDescription / Notes
Standard AgreementsIncludes Standard Research Contracts
Non-Template AgreementsThese come to R&I by way of Legal Services
Third Party Research AgreementsThese  come to R&I by way of RIC Contracts and/or Legal Services
Nominated "Safe Custody Documents"These are documents that are retained safely in the University's custody until the provider requests its return or deletion. They are registered in Content Manager (CM) as a 'Legal Agreement' record type. 
  
These include, but are not limited to: Bank guarantees, Deeds of Letters Patent / Certificates of Patent, Sanctions, Trademark Registration Certificates, Share Certificates, Valuation Reports, Wills and Testaments.

The following are not registered:

TypeDescription / Notes
Proxy FormsThese are of temporary retention value and are to be recorded as a 'Document' record type in CM by the staff responsible for them.

They will usually relate to our memberships of companies, internal and external boards and meetings and need to be filed with the appropriate Board / Committee / External Relations file.

The fact that they are on some occasions sealed is to do with the authorisation process rather than its ongoing value.
DraftsThese are to be recorded as a 'Document' record type in CM by the staff responsible for them and attached to the relevant CM folder.

By draft we mean where there are no signatures, and/or the matter has not been finalised. An exception would be when we have absolutely no other representation of an agreement, when we should have one by now (eg, when agreements of amalgamating institutions are located during a records survey).

FAQs

Agreement submission and management

  • How do I submit an agreement?

    Following execution, the agreement can be submitted one of three ways:

    Method 1 - Agreements signed in OneSpan Sign

    • Agreements that get signed off in OneSpan Sign will get downloaded and registered into Content Manager (CM) by R&I.
    • Make sure you complete the ‘Legal Agreement Metadata for Content Manager’ document included in the transaction. Include extra information about the agreement in the ‘Description’ field in the document as required.
    • See this KBA for guidance.

    Method 2 - Contracts referred to Legal Services

    • Agreements that get referred to the Legal Services team will get submitted through their existing processes.
    • When the matter is closed, Legal Services staff will prepare and send the agreement and supporting data to R&I for registration.

    Method 3 - Other agreements

    • Agreements that are signed outside of the OneSpan Sign system and which don’t go through Legal Services should be submitted directly to Records & Information.
    • Send an email to: records-info@unimelb.edu.au or submit via ServiceNow request.
  • Can I attach multiple agreements in one submission?

    Yes, you can. However there might be a size limit with multiple attachments when sending via email.

  • What are the scanning requirements for hardcopy agreements?

    A scanned copy of the agreement should be forwarded to records-info@unimelb.edu.au. Requirements for scanning can be found here.

    Note: As per the advice in Promapp, hardcopy agreements need to be scanned as a Searchable PDF (OCR), and quality assurance checks performed by the staff responsible for them.

  • Do I need to send hardcopy agreements as well?

    If the agreements is electronic only, do not print copies to send to us.

    Where an original hardcopy (wet signature) agreement exists, it should be sent to our office address at: Records & Information, Level 4 Alan Gilbert Building, Parkville Campus.

  • What if the agreement is too large to be sent via email?

    You can save the agreement to your OneDrive and send the link to: records-info@unimelb.edu.au and/or attach it to a ServiceNow request.

  • What do we do with counterpart agreements, partially signed agreements, and copies of agreements?

    Counterpart agreements

    Counterpart agreements occur when 2 or more original signatures are in 2 or more separate documents.  We keep each set of the document (body of the agreement) with a single signature page, ie, 2 different signatories might sign a copy of the signature page separately but the covering document it relates to remains the same. When scanning the document to create a CM image (digital records), scan the body of the agreement once, and each of the signature pages.

    Partially signed agreements

    If you are unable to determine where the fully executive agreement is, email or phone a Records & Information staff member to check if the agreement has already been registered into Content Manager and follow the advice provided. If you are advised by Records & Information that the partially signed agreement is not required, it can be destroyed in a secure confidential waste bin.

    Copies where no original exists

    Since 10/11/2009 we have been treating copies of the finalised (complete) agreement or contract, as if they are the original, in the absence of the true original.

    Multiple copies of agreements

    Multiple copies of the agreement are not required. Please ensure that the other party/ies to the agreement have their copy, as additional copies will not be retained by Records & Information.

Agreement notifications

  • What is the supply contracts email notification system?

    The supply contracts email notification system was introduced in October 2019 by Records & Information and Commercial Services.

    It is designed to assist Contract Managers in the management of supply agreements which have been registered into the University Legal Agreements Register.

  • What types of notifications will the supply contracts email notification system send?

    If you have been identified as the Contract Manager for one or more supply agreements, ie, the person with the responsibility to manage them, you should expect to receive the following email notifications at the various stages of the contract’s life cycle:

    1. Notification of the agreement’s registration and it’s availability in the University Legal Agreements Register.
    2. Notification 90 days prior to the contract’s expiration date
    3. Notification 30 days prior to the contract’s expiration date

    All email notifications will contain a link to view and/or download the contract, so that any required action can be taken.

  • I received the contract expiry email notification but I am no longer the Contract Manager, what should I do?

    Contact Records & Information: records-info@unimelb.edu.au with the details of the Contract Manager and we will update the email notification tool.

Accessing agreements

  • Can I access these agreements in the future once submitted?

    Yes, agreements submitted are in safe custody with us and can be retrieved any time. If you have access to Content Manager, you can search for the agreements and view them in the system. Otherwise if you contact us, we can send you the agreement that you are after.

Further information

If you require further information about the registration of legal agreements, please contact Records & Information: records-info@unimelb.edu.au.