Question: Check Writing!!

I am the treasurer for our PTO.Previous years, our organziation required the president and treasurer to sign each check written to pay for expenses. However, this year, we decided to just have one signature line for our checks, and the president OR treasurer can sign. However, someone told me we should NOT do this, for insurance purposes. I should mention, we keep detailed expense reports, and both the treasurer and president sign a fund request form for every transaction. we need two signatures on each check, or is just one sufficient? Thanks!

Asked by Anonymous



Advice from PTO Today

Craig writes:
Having two signers on every check is a good financial control, and we recommend it. I would say you can get along with out it, though, as long as you have other financial controls in place. For instance, it's more important to keep a paper trail for every expenditure, as you are doing, and to make sure that more than one person reviews the bank statement every month. Consider having someone who is not a signer on the account receive the statement. As far as the insurance angle, you should talk to the insurer to see whether that's a stipulation of your policy. It seems unlikely to me.

Community Advice

mtchard writes:
As an accountant, one of the biggest financial controls you can put in place is not having the person who can sign the checks handle the bookkeeping. It is very common to feel that the treasurer should be a signer but if they are also in charge of keeping the financials that can make it very easy for someone to divert funds. I personally have seen situations where there were questions raised that could have been avoided by one person not having all of that control. Having two people sign a fund request is only effective if someone else is auditing those requests and reviewing all disbursements which generally is not occuring. You could have someone else receive the bank statement but I would personally suggest taking yourself off as a signer just to not open yourself up to potential criticism.

Community Advice

tmontanari writes:
BAD, BAD, BAD idea to go to one signature! There should always be two signitures to not only protect the PTO funds from fraud, but also to protect yourself from the appearance of "funny business".

Answer this question: