4209 PR.06 Transfer, Sale, or Release of Equipment to Other Institutions or Third Parties

Revision Date: 
June 2, 2017


This procedure describes the process for the transfer, sale, or release of equipment to external parties. This procedure is related to the University’s Policy 4209 Equipment.

Equipment – Equipment is a tangible, non-expendable University asset that has an estimated useful life of greater than one year and a per unit acquisition cost equal to or greater than the University’s capitalization threshold of $5,000.  

Equipment which the University owns and no longer has a use for may be sold, transferred, or released to another institution or third party with approval of the owning department’s dean or chair, and the University Provost, subject to the following: 

  1. Equipment purchased with federal funds may not be transferred to a for-profit institution;
  2. Equipment funded by an inactive grant may be released only if the department’s chair certifies that the equipment is not needed by any other Yale Investigators; and
  3. If an active grant is being transferred to another academic institution, any transfer of equipment purchased on that grant during the active grant segment, must comply with all of the terms and conditions of the grant.

The following steps must be followed by departments before any equipment owned by the University may be sold, transferred, or leased to an external party:

  1. Departments must complete a detailed list of equipment (including individual tag numbers) to be sold, transferred, or released to an external party;
  2. The Department Chair must approve the release of the equipment and certify that the equipment is not needed by any other Yale investigators;
  3. The list of equipment (including the MEI tag number) approved by the Department Chair for transfer outside the University must then be submitted to the Controller’s Office, which will determine whether or not the University owns the equipment and identify the source of funds used to purchase the equipment;
  4. Following confirmation of title by the Controller’s Office, the Department Chair, and the Provost Office must provide final approval for the transfer of the equipment by completing either of the University’s equipment transfer forms for sale or PI release (Form 4209 FR.05 Capital Equipment Transfer Release Form);
  5. The Controller’s Office will complete any documentation required for release or transfer of title, including any documentation required by an awarding agency if the equipment was acquired with proceeds from a sponsored agreement; and 
  6. If any quit claim deeds and or other agreements or contracts are required for the transfer of equipment to an external party the Office of General Counsel must be consulted regarding who is authorized to sign such documents on behalf of the University.

In all cases, the requirements of the granting or contracting sponsor concerning the transfer of equipment, if more stringent, will supersede University policy.

Equipment to which the University does not have legal title may not be sold, transferred or released to another institution or third-party without the written approval of the owner.

In general, equipment purchased with funds from a sponsored project becomes the property of the University when it is delivered.  There are, however, some sponsored agreements under which the sponsor retains title to any equipment purchased with sponsor funds.  Great care must be taken when transferring any items that were purchased with funds from a sponsored project and the Office of Sponsored Research should be consulted if there is any doubt regarding who holds legal title to the equipment.