Section 1: GENERALLY
Pursuant to § 1609 of the New York City Civil Court Act and Joint Administrative Order 453 of the Appellate Divisions for the First and Second Departments, every marshal must maintain bank accounts as prescribed by the Department of Investigation.
A marshal must open an operating account and at least one trust account before the marshal may commence his or her official activities. These accounts and the restrictions on their use and maintenance are fully described in the sections that follow. All monies collected and disbursed by the marshals must be channeled through a trust fund bank account. All fees and certain expenses must be drawn from a trust account and immediately deposited into the marshal's operating account. Withdrawals or disbursements from either account may be made only by check or electronic funds transfer (EFT), provided that the marshal retains in his or her records information regarding the EFT that is equivalent to the information that must be retained for a computer-issued check, including the docket number, payee, check amount, and date issued and that the marshal’s bank statement identifies the originator and recipient or transferee of each EFT.
Under no circumstances are funds in the marshal's trust or operating account to be commingled with any other funds. A marshal's personal obligations or expenses may not be paid through his or her trust or operating account. Donations and contributions paid through a marshal's official accounts are also prohibited. Charitable contributions and political club dues are personal expenses which may not be paid out of a marshal's official account.
The closing of any of the marshal's bank accounts requires advance approval from the Department of Investigation. After a month end closing and bank reconciliation of the account to be closed, provided there are no pending adjustments to the statement, such as deposits in transit, a check or EFT for the exact amount of the balance in the account minus an amount sufficient to cover any outstanding checks and bank fees should be drawn to the marshal and deposited into the new trust fund bank account on the same day. Entries should be made in the “total amount disbursed” field or column and the “miscellaneous” field or column. An explanation of the transactions should be entered in the “remarks” field or column.
Other than the above-described check or EFT to the new account, no checks or EFTs should be drawn on the old account, once the funds have been transferred to the new account, and the old account shall be used solely to allow outstanding checks to clear. The marshal shall not use the old account for any other purpose. Unauthorized use of an official account will subject the marshal to disciplinary measures. Within one hundred eighty (180) days after opening a new account, a final month end closing and bank reconciliation must be completed and the old account must be closed. If any checks remain outstanding after the old account is closed and the payee can be located, the marshal should ensure that the original check is returned, voided, and replaced with a new check or EFT from the new account. If the check cannot be located, the marshal should place a stop payment order on it. If the payee cannot be located, the check should be treated as unclaimed funds in accordance with Section 3-3 of Chapter XII below.
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Section 2: TRUST FUND BANK ACCOUNT
Every city marshal must maintain a separate bank account as the depository for trust funds in his or her custody. The account must be kept in the name of the marshal and designated as a trust account, e.g., John Jones, City Marshal‑Trust Account.
A marshal may have more than one trust fund bank account. Marshals handling funds for Parking Violations Operations (PVO) must have a separate trust fund bank account for funds collected pursuant to PVO judgments.
The Department of Investigation must be informed in writing of the location and account numbers of all bank accounts. If a marshal desires to maintain more than one trust account, he or she must inform the Department of the reason for utilizing the additional account(s) and receive written permission from the Department of Investigation prior to opening the account(s).
A marshal must deposit in the trust fund bank account(s) all the funds he receives in connection with his official acts as a marshal, including collections, fees, expenses, moving money, and the full proceeds of all sales. Deposits of all monies received must be made no later than the next banking day following the date of the receipt of these funds.
- If necessary, a marshal may make an initial deposit to open a trust fund bank account. The amount of such initial deposit must be reported to the Department of Investigation. Except when such an initial deposit is necessary, no personal funds shall be deposited in the trust fund bank account. Any initial investment must be transferred to the marshal’s operating account and withdrawn within one year after the marshal commences his or her official duties. If additional time is needed before withdrawal of the initial investment from the operating account, the marshal must inform the Department in writing, in advance, and abide by any further instructions from the Department.
- In the event that a marshal does not have enough funds available in his or her operating account to meet the marshal’s business obligations, a personal loan may be made to the business. Written approval of the Department, pursuant to a written request from the marshal, is required prior to the making of such a loan.
- The balance in the trust fund bank account must never be less than the sum of the amounts due to attorneys, plaintiffs, and defendants, the amounts due to the State of New York for sales tax, and the amounts owing for trust fund expenses (e.g., moving costs).
- All checks drawn on the trust fund bank account must be serially numbered. No post-dated checks may be drawn.
- Funds may also be disbursed from the trust fund bank account in the form of electronic funds transfers (EFTs), provided that the marshal retains for his or her records all information about the EFT that the marshal would retain for a computer-issued check, including the docket number, payee, check amount, and date issued, and further provided that the bank statement identifies the recipient or transferee of each EFT.
- All checks must be recorded,including those which have been voided.Voided checks must be attached to the check stubs, or otherwise retained.The signature portion of any voided check must be torn off.
- All information called for on check stubs must be entered in a complete and legible manner.A marshal who uses a computer to issue checks must maintain for each numbered check a record of the docket number, payee, check amount, and date issued.
- No checks drawn on the trust fund bank account may be made payable to “Cash.” Cash may not be withdrawn from the trust fund bank account by any means.
- All fees and expenses shall be withdrawn from the trust fund bank account by a check or EFT payable to the marshal's operating account or, in the case of an expense, the person entitled to payment. Fees and expenses may be withdrawn on the same or separate checks or EFTs. However, it is not recommended that separate checks or EFTs be drawn for fees due the marshal in each action. Fees and expenses shall not accumulate in the trust fund bank account for longer than two months.
- Errors, whether made by the bank or the marshal, must be corrected immediately.
- A monthly bank reconciliation shall be performed no later than forty-five (45) days after the end of the relevant month. (See Chapter XII, § 3 9.)
- A marshal may execute a power of attorney conferring upon a designated person the authority to exercise certain specific powers covering banking transactions, as defined in the General Obligations Law, § 5 1502D, including the power to make or sign checks on behalf of the marshal or to withdraw funds from the marshal's accounts. A marshal who wishes to grant such a power of attorney must first submit a proposed power of attorney form for approval by this Department.
Section 3: OPERATING FUND BANK ACCOUNT
Every city marshal must maintain, in addition to his or her trust fund bank account(s), a single, separate bank account for the marshal’s operating account, e.g., John B. Jones, City Marshal Operating Account. The trust account and the operating account may be maintained in the same or different banks. A marshal may never have more than one operating account at any time. All deposits to the operating account must come from an authorized trust account.
- All fees and expenses drawn by the marshal from his or her trust fund bank account must be deposited into the marshal's operating account.
- All operating expenses of the marshal (rent, payroll, taxes, telephone, etc.) are to be paid from the operating account.
- The marshal must draw his or her net fees from this account by issuing checks or EFTs payable to himself or herself for marshal's fees. The use of an automatic teller machine to obtain cash is prohibited.
- Under no circumstances is the marshal permitted to satisfy personal obligations or expenses from the marshal’s operating account.
- The marshal can take his fees from his operating account only by issuing a check to himself. The use of an automatic teller machine to obtain cash is prohibited.
- A monthly bank reconciliation must be performed within forty-five (45) days after the end of the reported month. (See also Chapter XII, § 4.)
- All checks drawn on the operating fund bank account must be serially numbered. No post-dated checks may be drawn.
- Funds may also be disbursed from the operating fund bank account in the form of electronic funds transfers (EFTs), provided that the marshal retains for his or her records all information about the EFT that the marshal would retain for a computer-issued check, including the payee, check amount, and date issued, and further provided that the bank statement identifies the recipient or transferee of each EFT.
- All checks must be recorded, including those which have been voided. Voided checks must be attached to the check stubs, or otherwise retained. The signature portion of any voided check must be torn off.
- All information called for on check stubs must be entered in a complete and legible manner.