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Award Closeout for Sponsored Programs


Sponsoring agencies consider an award “closed” when all required programmatic, administrative, and financial activities have been completed. Closing an award includes both internal and sponsor related activities.

NYU Approach

Department Administrators (DA's) should review projects expiring within 90 days. The Principal Investigator (PI) and DA should verify that all project costs have been appropriately charged. Any costs which are not allowable or allocable to the award should be removed. PI's and DA's are responsible for timely submission of all required information necessary to process final invoices and/or reports to sponsors.

Award Closeout & Final Reports: Do's & Don'ts

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Follow These Steps to Close an Award:


Charges incurred after award end date

Any charges posted after the termination date must be fully explained and justified for allowability/allocability.

Request for a Service/Recharge Center Billing Code Change

The Department should notify the service center that a project is terminating 60 days prior to the project termination, to prevent charges from being posted after the project has ended.

Releasing Encumbrance Balances

If, after all expenses have posted, there is an encumbrance balance remaining, the Department must notify Payroll or Purchasing to remove the encumbrance.

Resolving Deficits: Cost Overruns and Uncollectible Accounts Receivable

The Department must clear any deficits (i.e., over expenditures) within 90 days after the award ends.

Unallowable and Unallocable Costs

Unallowable and unallocable costs must be removed from the sponsored project before the award ends.

Fixed-price Agreements

If there is a surplus after the agreement has ended, full overhead will be applied to the agreement and any remainder transferred to the Department’s discretionary account.

Technical & Other Reports

Final technical reports, final reports of inventions, and the final inventory of equipment are normally due within 90 days after the project-end date.  PI's are responsible for ensuring that all technical reports are submitted on time. PI's are also responsible for ensure that Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) is provided the submission date of the final technical (or program) report.

Transfer or Termination of Sponsored Research

When a PI leaves the University, a replacement may be appropriate.  Sponsor approval (in writing) is required before a new PI can be assigned.

Transferring an award from New York University (NYU) to another institution requires a written request by that institution to the sponsoring agency. Included with the request should be written authorization from NYU.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) prepares all interim and final Financial reports based on amounts recorded in the University’s PeopleSoft general ledger. Interim reports are not submitted to departments for review unless requested in advance by the department. Any adjustments will be included at project expiration with the Final report provided appropriate justification is provided. SPA will submit the Final financial report to the department for review. The department should return the final financial report to SPA in a timely manner to allow SPA to review the final financial report. If the department does not respond within 48 hours prior to the reporting deadline, the report will be issued to the sponsor.

Reporting deadlines vary by agency. Generally, Federal sponsors require a final report within 90 days of project expiration. The Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) Deliverables Report lists reporting due dates. This report is available on the SPA portal in the BRIO financial reporting system. If you need access or training in using these reports, please email your SPA Team inbox:

To identify your Team Inbox, click here to go to the SPA Contacts page.

Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) generally prepares all invoices. Occasionally, departments may prepare invoices, however, SPA must review and sign off on all invoices prior to submission to the sponsor.

Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) is responsible for collection with assistance from the departments. E.g., a payment may be 90 days overdue because a Progress Report has not been submitted by the Department. However, the department is ultimately responsible for any receivables which cannot be collected from the sponsor.

SPA will close/inactivate a project when all expenses in the PeopleSoft general ledger agree to the amount reported to the sponsor, and all payments have been received.

A negative encumbrance typically occurs when there are insufficient funds available for the original payroll encumbrance journal to post, or an invalid chartfield was provided. A negative encumbrance will artificially inflate the project’s available balance, and may lead to further spending resulting in a project deficit. Departments must review their Budget Exception Reports to identify the encumbrance fail and resolve immediately, as any deficits will be the sole responsibility of the department.

Departments should confirm whether the correct budget is reflected in the Brio financial reporting system Budget Summary Reports and should also confirm that the amount agrees to the agency authorized budget. Departments should review all expenses to ensure charges were posted to the correct project. If a deficit exists, the department must transfer those costs to a discretionary chartfield using a cost share program. Such costs are perceived as valid research costs that cannot be billed to the sponsor, but must be tracked for purposes of the Facilities and Administrative (F&A) Rate Proposal.

  • Departments must confirm that all appropriate expenses posted to the project.
  • If the award requires funds be returned to the sponsor, Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) will submit a Business Payment Form request to Accounts Payable (AP).
  • If the award is silent or allows the balance to be retained by New York University (NYU), the department should submit a Journal Entry Management System (JEMS) request to transfer the surplus to a discretionary chartfield. Please consult with SPA on the appropriate accounts to use.

Handbook Table of Contents

NYU Policy:
Award Closeout Policy for Sponsored Programs

Full Policy & Downloadable PDF available at the University Policy Website.

Read the Policy

Grants Closeout Checklist

Complete this checklist when expenses on Budget Summary Report (BSR) match the final financial reports/invoices submitted. Confirm pending adjustments have posted and attach BSR as support.

Download the PDF

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