The timeline for award closeout activities begins 90 days prior to the award’s end date and typically concludes 90 days after the end date of the award. Sponsored projects are considered closed when all of the work has been performed to the sponsor’s satisfaction or upon the termination date specified in the award documents.
During award closeout, a principal investigator or their designee and the school support staff must work closely with the Office of Sponsored Projects (OSP) and Grants and Contracts Accounting Services (GCAS) to ensure that sponsored projects are closed in a timely and accurate manner.
Timely award closeouts are monitored as part of the OMB Uniform Guidance (2 CFR §200) audit. With the implementation of OMB Uniform Guidance 2 CFR §200, the closeout timeframe from the end date of an award will be 75 days, based on a 90-day closeout period. Final financial reports will be submitted in advance of the sponsor’s financial report due date (known within GW as: EAS “Close” date).
The award closeout process and timeline varies by sponsor and by funding mechanism:
- For federal awards, all financial, performance and other reports required by the terms and conditions of the award must be submitted within 90 calendar days of the end date.
- For non-federal awards, all reports must be submitted within 30 days, 45 days, 60 days or as specified.
Pre-Closeout Review and Notices
The award management system sends email alerts to the principal investigator (PI), school support staff, OSP and GCAS at 90, 60 and 30 days prior to an award's end date. These alerts are intended to assist in the award closeout process and in identifying and resolving issues prior to final report filing deadlines.
Closeout Adjustment Period
Immediately following the award’s end date, an “adjustment period” provides time for all final transactions (accounts payable, payroll, service center and other final adjusting entries) to post to the General Ledger and become available in EAS. This adjustment period begins the day after the award expiration date (the last day of the final budget period) and can last anywhere between 15 to 60 days depending on the terms of the award document. All expenditures must be incurred by the award expiration date. No new expenditures can be initiated after the last day of the performance period of the award.
The PI or designee and the school-based research administrators must ensure that all allowable costs are accurately recorded on a timely basis. If additional time is required for award activities, it is the PI's responsibility to request a no-cost extension through the Office of Sponsored Projects no later than 30 days prior to award expiration.
Following the adjustment period and submission of the closeout certification, GCAS reviews award transactions for accuracy and compliance, and prepares the final financial report and/or invoice for the sponsor. Only expenses posted to the General Ledger can be included in the final financial report.
The principal investigator (PI) and/or department/school are responsible for any adverse financial consequences (i.e., unallowable costs, overages, sponsor default on payment, etc.). Expenditures charged to a department account during the financial closing process are not eligible for cost transfers.
Submission of Final Reports
Sponsors must receive the required final technical and financial reports within the parameters established in the terms and conditions of the award.
PIs are responsible for preparing and submitting all technical reports, certifications and disclosure statements associated with a particular grant.
The final technical report is the most important report prepared by the PI and should provide a synthesis of the overall results from the project. The final report communicates the results of the research and the funding agency uses this report as the principal reporting tool to inform the sponsor, stakeholders or others on the success and impact of the research programs being funded.
GCAS will prepare and submit the final financial report to the sponsor within 75 days of the award end date (or sooner, depending on the terms of the award document).
Once GCAS has submitted the final financial report to the sponsor, any remaining project funds are no longer available to pay expenditures and any subsequent expenditure will be charged to the PI’s department or school.
For more information about the award closeout process: