PI Delegation of Signature Authority

PI Delegation of Signature Authority for Goods and Services on Sponsored Projects


The Principal Investigator is the individual responsible for meeting the objectives of his/her sponsored research project, including financial management.  The Principal Investigator may, at his/her discretion, delegate authority for approving the acquisition of goods and services, and the transfer of expenditures to sponsored projects under their direction. While it is acceptable and practical for the PI to have assistance in financial management, standards for delegation of signature authority to acquire goods and/or services purchased on sponsored project funds must ensure that the PI maintains oversight and only appropriate expenditures are approved. 

The individual to which the signature authority is delegated should have direct knowledge of the needs of the project, i.e., how a specific purchase benefits or is needed by the project. Delegates will be responsible to ensure that purchases are allocated to the correct project, in compliance with all applicable policies, procedures, rules and regulations (e.g. University Policies, OMB Uniform Guidance, Sponsor Policies, Award Terms and Conditions). 


The PI will complete and sign the Signature/Approval Delegation Form for Sponsored Projects (URL http://nau.edu/postaward/Forms/ ) , listing all Projects in which he/she wishes to delegated signature authority for.  The delegate/designee will also sign the form acknowledging his/her responsibility.  The form will then be forwarded to Post Award Office, Box 4070. To expedite the process you may fax or email a signed copy of the form to PAASFC, however PAASFC is the official house of record and the original form with original signatures must also be forwarded to PAASFC. 

What the PI may delegate signature authority for using this form: 

  • Purchases
  • Travel
  • Expense Transfers
  • Receipt of Goods and/or Services 

What the PI may NOT delegate signature authority for using this form: 

  • Budget Modifications
  • Sponsor/ Agency Required Reports
  • Payroll
  • Effort