Minnesota law has generally required multiple signatures on checks written by cities, towns, counties, or volunteer fire relief associations. In addition to being required by statute, multiple signatures are part of an entity’s internal controls. When more than one person signs a check, there is greater assurance that the claim is correct and that payment has been approved by the governing body.

Checks should never be pre-signed. Signing checks prior to approval by the governing body defeats this statutorily-mandated safeguard.

In addition, signature cards on file with the bank should be updated regularly so only those individuals currently authorized to sign checks are named. Verifying signatures should be part of the entity’s prompt review and verification of negotiated checks.

Date this Avoiding Pitfall was most recently published: 9/11/2020