Signature Authority and Delegation
About This Policy
- Effective Date:
- Date of Last Review/Update:
- Responsible University Office:
- Office of the University Counsel
Office of the Treasurer
- Responsible University Administrator:
- Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
- Policy Contact:
- Donald Lukes
- Policy Feedback:
- If you have comments or questions about this policy, let us know with the policy feedback form.
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- Pursuant to the Board of Trustees resolution, “Powers of the Treasurer,” dated June 21, 1991, the Treasurer of the Trustees of Indiana University and of the University (the Treasurer), and other officers acting in conjunction with the Treasurer are granted specific authority to execute certain documents on behalf of the university. When the Treasurer is absent, the President, the Vice President delegated by the President, or the Assistant Treasurer are authorized to execute, issue, and deliver documents which would otherwise be signed by the Treasurer.
- No officer, agent, or employee of the university has the authority to sign contracts or other agreements on behalf of the university or any unit, department, or subdivision of the university in the absence of a formal delegation of authority as described in the following three paragraphs. This policy applies to all documents that obligate the university, irrespective of the title or designation of the document, e.g. “contracts,” “agreements,” “memorandum of understanding (MOU),” “memorandum of agreement (MOA),” and “purchase orders,” are all covered by this policy. Refer to the Definitions section of this policy for a more detailed description of documents that are covered by this policy.
- The Treasurer may delegate the authority to sign such documents as are related to conducting the business operations of the university. This delegation shall be issued consistent with the parameters established in this policy and shall be made only by letter to the Secretary of the Board of Trustees and maintained as part of the official records of the Board. Any documents signed by the delegated individual shall have the same force and effect as if the documents were signed by the Treasurer. Any delegation of authority may be revoked at the discretion of the Treasurer.
- In conjunction with a separate Board of Trustees policy which establishes and delegates purchasing authority for the University to the Associate Vice President for Procurement Services and that Associate Vice President’s delegates (campus purchasing directors and purchasing agents), the corresponding signature authority is hereby delegated to the Associate Vice President for Procurement Services and that Associate Vice President’s delegates with respect to the execution of purchase orders and related contractual agreements and documents necessary to contract the purchase of goods and services.
- Each contract or other document signed by an authorized delegate must be reviewed and approved by the Office of the Vice President and General Counsel (OVPGC) prior to signature, unless:
- The delegation letter expressly authorizes the delegate to execute one or more specific documents that have been approved in form and substance by the Treasurer and OVPGC where the transactions are repetitive and the text of each document is highly standardized; or
- The delegation letter expressly authorizes the delegate to sign certain types of documents without OVPGC review.
Reason for Policy
To establish and clarify protocols regarding signature authority and the delegation of signature authority with respect to contracts and agreements between the university and third parties.
- Any employee of the university who believes that a delegation of signature authority would be in the best interest of the university should request such authority in writing to the Treasurer of the University.
- The Treasurer’s Office will notify and consult with the appropriate senior university official with regard to, and in advance of, making a delegation to an employee.
- The Secretary of Board shall maintain an official record of such delegation.
- The Treasurer shall require that all delegates provide a new certification every two years that such delegation is still required for the efficient conduct of university business. Records of such verification shall be maintained in the Office of the Treasurer.
Affiliation Agreements: All agreements with hospitals, rehabilitation centers, elementary and secondary schools, educational or research organizations, and the like for placement of Indiana University students for internships and similar training experiences.
Bank Accounts: All documents related to opening, amending or closing bank accounts on behalf of the university; documents relating to the deposit and withdrawal of funds, and other documents needed to conduct such banking activities as required in the normal business of the university; and all documents relating to the investment of university funds as permitted by the Investment Policy approved by the Board of Trustees.
Business Transactions: All checks, contracts, agreements deeds, notes, bonds, leases, stock powers, repurchase agreements for real estate and any other documents obligating the Trustees of Indiana University. This category includes agreements with outside consulting firms; agreements to rent, lease or license of the use of facilities from outside entities whether for educational or social purposes; agreements with outside vendors or entertainment providers, and the like.
Debt Obligations and Loan Transactions: All documents required to conclude and amend loan transactions and issue notes in the name of “The Trustees of Indiana University” or “Indiana University” when the Board approves borrowing funds. Those documents specifically requiring the signature of the President of the Board, as required by the terms of the Indentures or prevailing law, are excluded from this policy.
Permit Applications and Certifications: All applications for environmental or construction-related permits, and any other regulatory certificate, permit, or similar documents that are required by state and federal regulators, and attendant reports and certifications of compliance.
Sponsored Research: All grant proposals, grant agreements, sub-grant agreements, contracts, subcontracts, purchase orders, and any other documents relating to external funding of research.
Tax Documents: Tax forms, tax returns, and any official correspondence with federal and state tax authorities and agencies.
Miscellaneous: Any and all other documents and transactions either referred to explicitly or implicitly in the Resolution.
This policy was established on June 1, 2003.
This policy was revised to add a Scope section on November 18, 2016.
This policy was fully reviewed, and non-substantive updates were made Octover 12, 2021.