The last step in a sponsored project’s life cycle, whether cost reimbursable or fixed price, is close out. A key feature of any close out is the on-time submission of all technical, financial, and other required reports to the sponsor.
Award Close Out Reports
Authorized Official Representative
- Some sponsors require that final reports be signed by a UVM Authorizing Official (AO).
- To obtain AO signature you may send your report to the SPA Financial Analyst assigned to your unit.
Final Technical Report
- The Project’s Principal Investigator is responsible for timely submission of the final technical reports.
- Specific sponsor requirements for the technical reports are usually defined in the award package.
- When the report is completed, the Principal Investigator may submit it directly to the sponsor.
Final Financial Report
- Depending on the sponsor final fiscal reports are due anywhere between 30 -120 days after the expiration date of the award.
- The fiscal reports are prepared by SPA Financial Analyst.
- After the Principal Investigator or business unit administrator are given the opportunity to review to make sure all expenditures are accurately recorded, the SPA Financial Analyst will submit to the sponsor.
- Carryover of Unobligated Funds: Where carryover of unobligated funds requires sponsor approval please follow the sponsor’s directions to request Carryover of Unobligated Funds.
- For fiscal reports that require a certification of charges, SPA will provide the statement similar to the following; "I certify, to the best of my knowledge, that all expenditures reported are appropriate for the purpose and in accordance with the agreement set forth in the application and award documents."
Final Invention Report
- Most federal sponsors require both negative and positive invention reports.
- Where invention reports are required, your unit's SPA Research Administrator will collect the information needed and will coordinate with the Principal Investigator.
- In addition, if an invention was made in whole or in part with project funding, unit's SPA Research Administrator will coordinate the disclosure information with UVM Innovations, Office of Technology Commercialization prior to submitting the report to the sponsor.
Final Property Report
- Most grants and contracts do not require a final property report.
- Where property reports are required, the SPA Financial Analyst assigned to your unit will complete and submit to the sponsor.
- It is important that reports are submitted on time.
- Some agencies will not release new funds to a Principal Investigator, or even to the UVM until all final reports have been submitted.
- If a principal Investigator is non-responsive after a third notice, SPA may actively engage with Chairs and/or Deans to ensure reports are submitted in response to delinquent notices.
Most federal grants and contracts final reports are due no later than 90-120 calendar days after the expiration date of the award.
Non-federal awards (state, industry, non-profits)
- Closing procedures vary, depending on the policies of the sponsor.
- Please check your award document for specifics.
- Non-federal sponsors normally have a shorter timeline than federal awards.
Project is Ending – Early Reminders
With federal sponsors being more critical of Institutions and late reporting, SPA delivers early notification emails to the Principal Investigators that their project is due to expire within 90 days, and then at 45 days prior to the award’s expiration date. Finally, SPA will deliver a day 0 notice indicating the project is now expired.
- 90 day email example (PDF)
- 45 day email example (PDF)
- 0 day email example (PDF)
- Advance Account Expiring example (PDF)
The early reminders ask the Principal Investigator to review the project with their business unit administrator and take appropriate actions, like the finish on time, begin the fiscal close, or request a no-cost extension.
The financial close of a project is a shared responsibility that involves the PI, the business administrator and the designated SPA Financial Analyst.
The following tasks are completed as part of financial close:
- Review all expenditures to ensure that all posted transactions are award-related and accurate. Transfer expenses that are deemed unallowable.
- Ensure any PurCard transactions are appropriately allocated.
- Confirm all required payroll entries have been posted. There cannot be any payroll charges after the award end date.
- Verify that final transactions from other departments, if applicable, have posted.
- Verify that all subcontractors’ final invoices, if applicable, have been received and accounted for.
- Verify cost sharing expenditures, if required, are properly coded and recorded.
- Spending in excess of the authorized amount must be transferred to an appropriate funding source.
If agreement allows the unexpended balance on a fixed-price contract or grant to be retained by the University, the PI needs to request that SPA transfer the applicable residual balance, in accordance with UVM’s UOP on SPA's Residual Balances on Sponsored Projects Procedure (PDF).
Fixed Price Award Close Outs
- A fixed price agreement, also known as firm-fixed price or fee-for-service contract, is an award mechanism where the sponsor pays a fixed price for agreed-upon work, regardless of the ultimate cost to complete the work.
- The expectation is that fixed-price awards will have expenses that closely match the payment received.
- In cases where an unspent balance, or residual balance, remains at the conclusion of a fixed price agreement, SPA will close the project following the SPA's Residual Balances on Sponsored Projects Procedure (PDF)
- SPA will initiate the close out by preparing and delivering to the PI and unit administrator the Fixed Price Close Out Form (PDF).
- Once completed, and returned to SPA, any residual funds, if greater than $1,000, less the appropriate F&A, will be transferred to the chartstring identified in the Close Out memo.
- The F&A component is distributed following the normal UVM F&A distribution process.
- Unspent balance of $1,000 or less, remains with SPA for the purposes of research administration training and other priorities.
FRAS Guidance on use of chartstrings for residuals
- Fund code 305 must be used for all residual balance transfers.
- Do not use Fund codes 100, 108, 330, 300, 150.