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Lifecycle Overview

Award Lifecycle describes and organizes the many stages of a sponsored project from conception to termination. The depiction of the stages of the Award Lifecycle above function as navigation to information for each topic. Click on each tile to display the respective content or click on the Pre-Award or Post-Award arrows to enable all sections without those stages to open. Clicking on the Award Lifecycle bar will display all content. A description for each section is highlighted below:

Concept & Funding

This section provides resources for Principal Investigators and their research teams in the development of ideas, in finding funding and proposal preparation.

Proposal Creation

This section provides guidance and resources on key components of a proposal, including requesting funding.

Proposal Submission

This section outlines the review criteria followed by central offices and provides guidance on submission deadlines.

Award Negotiation

This section provides details on types of funding mechanisms received by the University and the review criteria of central offices prior to acceptance of funding.

Award Setup

Award Setup provides details on how new awards are established in the financial and administrative systems at the University.

Award Management

Award Management outlines the responsibilities of departments and central offices with regards to funded agreements.

Project Closeout

This section outlines the responsibilities of departments and central offices and provides standards for closing the award.

Proposal Creation

Types of Proposal

Proposal Types for New Projects

Solicited Full Proposal

This type of proposal is submitted at the request of the sponsor. It may be in the form of a Request for Proposals (RFP)A solicitation used by the Federal government for proposals that will be funded by a contract mechanism. posted by the sponsor. The sponsor sets the framework of the project for a specific purpose in contrast to a principal investigator’s (PD/PI) initiated project.

Unsolicited Full Proposal

This type of proposal is initiated by the PD/PI and submitted to the sponsor for an open program that would benefit from the subject of the project. The subject and framework of the project are more flexible than a solicited funding opportunity.


This is a submission of a previously unfunded proposal. Generally, some revisions are made in response to the sponsor’s reviews. Some Federal sponsors limit the number of resubmission opportunities.

Proposal Types of Existing Projects

Competing Renewals

A proposal to extend an existing project for an additional period that had not previously been requested. This type of proposal competes for funding with other applicants and is as in-depth as the original proposal.

Noncompeting Renewals or Continuation Applications

A secondary proposal submitted for funding during a period of timeThe intervals of time, which a project period is divided into, for the obligation of funds based on budgetary, funding, and allocation purposes. included in the original submission. These request incremental funding, provide an update on the project’s status, and do not compete with other applicants for funding.


A secondary request for additional funds on an existing project. This type of proposal is typically used to request funds for an expansion of project scopeThe aims, objectives, and purposes of a grant application; as well as the methodology, approach, analyses or other activities; and the tools, technologies, and timeframes needed to meet the grant’s objectives..

Other Proposal Types

Limited Submissions

Submissions to a program announcement that are limited to a select number of applicants from a single institution. The University reviews and selects the proposal(s) that will be put forward as the applications for Limited Submissions if more than one project is being proposed.


An introductory, condensed proposal submitted for the first round of funding. Typically, these provide a summary of the proposed project and may include budgetary estimates. Accepted Pre-Proposals will result in an invitation to submit a full proposal.

Key Components of Proposals

Cover Page

Sponsors regularly require some form of a Title or Cover Page for submitted applications. It serves to identify the proposal and provide information about the University and the project. It may exist as a separate, required form or a letter detailing the same information.


Most Cover Pages include the following details:

  • Project Title
  • Funding Announcement or Sponsor’s Program Title
  • Sponsor Contact Information
  • University Contact Information
  • PD/PI Contact Information
  • Period of Performance for the Proposed Project
  • Requested Funding amount
  • University Signature
  • Contact Information for Signing Official

Project Summary or Abstract

This document provides a summary of the project being proposed. Most sponsors limit the amount of information permitted in this section. The Abstract can include the objectives and relevance of the project as well as the aims and methods to be used. Sponsors regularly use this as a public description of the project if the proposal is funded.

Research Plan or Project Narrative

The Research Plan is the programmatic content of the proposal. This section allows the PD/PI to describe the elements summarized in the Abstract in greater detail. Most sponsors require components that identify the project’s objectives, innovation and significance, technology and methodology to be used, any preliminary findings, and a timeline for progress. Sponsors use the Research Plan to judge the technical merit of the proposed project.


Citations are required for all references included in the Research Plan and the rest of the proposal. It supports the PD/PIs familiarity with the applicable literature. Particular attention should be paid to the sponsor’s formatting style and guidelines.

Personnel Biographical Sketches or Curriculum Vitae

Sponsors generally require some sort of description of the key individuals involved with the proposed project. These detail the individual’s education, previous research, positions held, publications, and other biographical information that is relevant to the proposed project. Formats and requirements vary widely, and some non-Federal sponsors adopt Federal templates.

Budget and Budget Justification

These two components provide the financial description to support the Research Plan. The Budget provides a detailed accounting of the cost of the project. The Budget Justification explains the need and cost for each expense. These are one of the primary items for OSR review because they obligate the University to the level of financial support that is presented. The method and format are dictated by the sponsor’s requirements and the individual program’s funding announcement.

Facilities & Resources

The Facilities and Resources statement documents the abilities of the University’s resources and capabilities to support the project, much as the Biographical Sketch identifies the capabilities of the project personnel. This component includes a description of the facilities to be used, equipment, and other beneficial amenities available for the proposed project.

Compliance Documentation

The required compliance documentation may vary depending on the elements of your project. If you have Human Research Subjects, an approved IRB Protocol is needed. If you have Animal Subjects, an approved IACUC protocol is needed. These are the most obvious compliance documentation, but others include hazardous waste, biological, chemical, radiation and lab safety via the Environment, Health and Safety Office, intellectual property and invention disclosure via the Office of Technology Commercialization, Export Control review and management for any material being transferred out of the United States, and Conflict of Interest (COI).

There are two types of fiscal COI that must be considered for each project, organizational or individual. Some sponsors may require that the organization, UNC, does not have any fiscal conflicts of interest in performing the research. This needs to be noted at the proposal stage or as soon as possible, as this review is lengthy, and a project ID cannot be established until it is complete.

Another type of COI is individual, and it is required for EVERY sponsored research project. In RAMSeS there is a Compliance tab in both the Proposal and Award management modules that will assist in monitoring COI. All personnel must complete COI training and disclosures based on the Budget Start Date of the award, and must indicate if there is a possible conflict of interest for each project. If it is established that there is conflict of interest, then the person will need to work with the Conflict of Interests Program to establish a management plan. For more information on understanding the RAMSeS COI grid, please see this guidance.

Subrecipient Information

Subrecipients are incorporated into the University’s proposal as a separate section. Most sponsors require information from the subrecipient similar to what is provided by the University in the main proposal. It includes budgetary information, work being conducted, personnel Biographical Sketches, and institutional information.

Budgeting Concepts

Budgets are the financial plan for the project or program that the awarding agency or pass-through entity approves during the award process or in subsequent amendments to the award. OSR has a specific template for budgets and budget revisions that are to be used if there is not a sponsor required template. There are University specific requirements that must be met by all budgets for sponsored projects; all outlined costs must be necessary and support the project objectives, all costs must conform to Federal, University and sponsor guidelines, and all budgets and revisions must be approved by OSR. All budgets must follow the below-costing guidelines as well.


Costing outlines how different items of costs are categorized, which items may be charged to sponsored projects, how directCosts that can be identified specifically with a particular sponsored project, an instructional activity, any other institutional activity, or that can be directly assigned to such activities relatively easily with a high degree of accuracy. and indirect costsThose costs incurred for a common or joint purpose benefitting more than one cost objective, and not readily assignable to the cost objectives specifically benefitted without effort disproportionate to the results achieved. are categorized, what items always require prior approval, and outlines selected items of costs. The University has established the budget and associated expense categories that are used to charge expenses. All expense account codes roll into the associated budget account code. OSR can only allocate budget in the budget account codes and all budgets submitted to OSR should use these categories. Click here for a list of budget and expense categories.

Cost Principles

These are the government-wide principles that regulate the allowability of costs for Federally sponsored agreements. All Federal grants are governed by 2 CFR §200 Subpart E – Cost Principles. All Federal contracts are governed by 48 CFR §2.1, and all hospitals are governed by 45 CFR 75, Appendix IX. Sponsors will also have guidelines on expenses they consider allowable. They also will have guidance on determining and charging indirect (F&A) costs. For determining what costs are needed when creating a budget, please take into account the following criteria:



If a cost is allowable under the terms and conditions of the agreement, necessary to the completion of the project and meets all Federal and University regulations, then it is an allowable cost.


A cost is allocable to a grant if it is incurred solely in order to advance work under the agreement; it benefits both the project and other work of the institution, including other sponsored-supported projects; or it is necessary to the overall operation of the organization and is deemed to be assignable, at least in part, to the agreement.


If a prudent person would have considered the cost applicable and necessary at the time the charge was made the cost can be considered reasonable. This is called the prudent person test and addresses considerations such as whether the cost is generally necessary for the University’s operations or the project’s performance. It also takes into account whether the cost complied with the University’s policies in incurring the expense.


Costs must be consistently assigned to the same categories for similar actions regardless of the source of funding. Costs must also be consistently assigned as either direct or indirect cost across all sponsored projects at all times.

If a cost meets all of the above criteria, then it may be charged to the project. Please read each agreement carefully and speak to your department’s Sponsored Projects Specialist (SPS) if you have any questions.

Direct and Indirect Costs

Direct costs are those that can be easily identified with a particular sponsored project, or that can be directly assigned to a project relatively easily with a high degree of accuracy. Indirect costs (F&A) are those costs incurred for a common or joint purpose benefitting more than one project and not easily assignable to a specific project. Per 45 CFR §75.403, costs must be consistently charged as either direct or F&A costs, but may not be double charged or inconsistently charged as both.

See OSR Operating Standard 300.06

Facilities & Administrative Cost Rates and Calculations

Facilities and Administrative costs (Indirect or F&A) are the actual costs of university operations which are not readily assignable to a particular project. These costs are determined per Uniform Guidance §200.412-15. F&A cost rates are negotiated with the Department of Health and Human Services Cost Allocation Services (DHHS-CAS) through the Office of Sponsored Research (OSR) Cost Analysis and Compliance unit. For more information on F&A costs and calculations see our F&A Guidance and UNC F&A Dollar Sheet.

Select Items of Cost

Per 2 CFR §200.420-475 there are costs that are standard across the majority of sponsored projects as allowable and those that are never allowable on sponsored projects, except is extremely special circumstances and with University and sponsor prior approval. The following are costs that may be applied to projects in special circumstances and/or with prior approval:

  • Agreement termination costs
  • Conferences
  • Depreciation
  • Equipment
  • Maintenance/repair costs
  • Participant support
  • Pre-award spending
  • Publication and printing
  • Patient recruitment
  • Rental costs
  • Specialized facilities
  • Taxes
  • Training costs
  • Travel

The following are unallowable costs:

  • Advertising and public relations
  • Advisory councils
  • Alcohol
  • Alumni Activities
  • Bad debt
  • Collections of improper payments
  • Contingency provisions
  • Contributions/donations
  • Entertainment Costs
  • Fines/penalties
  • Fundraising
  • Goods/services for personal use
  • Interest
  • Lobbying
  • Deficits on other projects
  • Memberships, subscriptions or professional activities
  • Proposal costs

Cost Share

Also referred to as matching or in-kind contribution and is the financial portion of a sponsored project that is not covered by sponsor funds. There are three types of cost share:

See OSR Operating Standard 500.07

Voluntary Committed

A type of commitment where the recipient of a proposal adds cost share. If the proposal is funded, that cost share becomes mandatory. VOLUNTARY COST SHARE IS NOT ENCOURAGED.

Voluntary Uncommitted

This refers to the donation of effort towards a project that is above the amount committed and budgeted in a proposal. It was not committed to by the University at time of proposal but is still voluntarily given. This type of cost share must be tracked by the administering department.


When a sponsor requires the recipient to contribute a certain percentage or amount of funds to the project to receive funding.

The majority of sponsors do not allow voluntary cost share, and it is strongly discouraged by the University. Please refer to the proposal guidelines or speak with your department’s SPS for questions concerning cost share.

Budget Categories


Salaries and Wages

PHS Salary Cap

The salary cap applies to the total institutional salary paid to the individual. Salary dollars above a salary cap level are unallowable costs on the project, but they must be paid, tracked and accounted for by the department. NIH will fund the salary cap at the level in effect at the time of the competitive award. If, during the period of that award, the salary cap is increased, you will normally be able to use rebudgeting authority to pay the salary to the higher level. NIH, however, will not award any additional funds for this purpose.

See OSR Operating Standard 300.07


JT — Please confirm this is now linked properly Fringe benefits are calculated as follows:

Institutional Base SalaryThe annual compensation paid by an institution for an employee’s appointment, independent of the types of activities performed. This generally includes the research, instruction, administration, service, and clinical duties performed by any one employee. Requested * Fringe Benefit % = Fringe Dollars

Review OSR Operating Standard 300.07 and proposal guidelines to determine if social security costs apply to Post Doc’s and Grad students.

Determine fringe benefits paid to Foreign Nationals.

Health Insurance dollar rate prorated for the percentage of employee effort. The rate differs depending on the classification of the employee.

Physicians & Associates Supplemental Fringe Rates for clinical faculty members need to be considered as well.


Professional services that are specialized and only available outside the University. These services must be necessary to the project, and there should be no conflict of interest between the University and the consultant (2 CFR §200.459).

See OSR Operating Standard 500.12


Materials and supplies, including computing devices that can be attributed directly to the project. These supplies must be necessary for the completion of the project and allowable under the agreement.


Any tuition that will be paid to graduate students from the research funds. This is typically excluded from F&A and must be approved by the sponsor.


Please denote if it is foreign travel, which must be approved before charging the award. All travel must follow University policy and Federal regulations.

See OSR Operating Standard 500.10

Participant Support Costs

Items such as stipends or subsistence allowances, travel allowances, and registration fees paid on behalf of participants or trainees for conferences, continuing education or training programs.

Subrecipient Agreements

The cost of an agreement with an outside entity to complete certain elements of the scope of work. This amount should include their institution’s F&A amount. For any Federal subrecipient agreement, F&A will not be taken on it after the first $25,000 for each five-year segment.

Other Direct Costs

All other costs associated with this project. These should be detailed in the budget justification.

Indirect Costs

The University’s negotiated rate for indirect costs will be used unless the sponsor has a published rate or rate outlined in the agreement. This amount is calculated on Modified Direct Total unless otherwise stated in the agreement.

Cost Share

These are the expenses that are not covered by the research funds that the department will have to cover if required by the sponsor. Voluntary Cost Share is not encouraged.

Proposal Submission

Proposal Submission covers the period of University proposal review, submission to the sponsor, and any activities required before the notice of funding. Proposals are submitted for internal review through the Research Administration Management System & eSubmission (RAMSeS) used at the University. Departmental and Central Office reviews are conducted within RAMSeS. For industry sponsors, the proposal is also required to be submitted using ALICE or Clinical Research Management System (CRMS) for review from the OSR Industry Contracting (IC) team.

See OSR Operating Standard 200.07

RAMSeS Internal Processing Form (IPF)

An IPF is an internal record for University proposals. Every proposed grant, contract, and the cooperative agreement is required to have an IPF record.

Please consult with your Sponsored Projects Specialist (SPS) for further details on the IPF submission requirements for sponsored programs.

See OSR Operating Standard 300.03 Procedure 1

Industry Sponsored Submissions

There are several systems used at UNC to submit and monitor research agreements, Research Administration Management System & eSubmission (RAMSeS), Clinical Research Management System (CRMS), and ALICE. Different types of research agreements require submittals via different systems to ensure that they are processed by the correct OSR Research Administration team. For processing of industry agreements by our Industry Contracting (IC) team, the following are applicable:

  • CRMS Submittals: A confidentiality agreement for information shared in advance of a specific clinical trial, clinical trial agreement, or amendment to a clinical trial agreement. CRMS will collect the information, and at the submission of the agreement in CRMS, the submitter will be redirected to ALICE for completion of the submission process.
  • RAMSeS Submittals: All other funded agreements require an IPF, once it is approved by your department’s Sponsored Projects Specialist (SPS), it will be sent to OSR’s IC team to negotiate.
    • IPFs should include budget, the scope of work, draft agreement (if you have one), external contact for negotiations, and any other relevant information
  • ALICE Submittals: Unfunded agreements, such as Data Use Agreements (DUAs), Confidential Disclosure Agreements/Non-Disclosure Agreements (CDAs/NDAs), master agreements, and amendments with no change in funding. Please see New Agreements via ALICE Instructions for more information.
  • Recharge Service Center Agreements – email this form to

Non-Clinical Industry Agreements

Once the proposal is reviewed and approved by OSR via RAMSeS, IC will be notified and the agreement will be entered into ALICE, and assigned to one of the Contract Managers. Given the range of project and agreement types, your department’s Contract Manager will likely contact you to discuss your project or various provisions of the agreement to make sure your interests, in addition to UNC’s, are best served.

Industry Master Agreements can be negotiated prior to having a set project and budget. If you are requesting a new Master Agreement without a project or budget determined, you can request review in ALICE. If you have determined a project and budget with the sponsor, you will need to submit an eIPF in RAMSeS for OSR to review. You can upload the draft Master Agreement (which will include a Task Order/Work Order for this first project) to RAMSeS. You can submit a CRMS record that includes both the Master and the task order in the same record.

Clinical Industry Agreements

Industry clinical trials are research studies in which one or more human subjects are prospectively assigned to one or more interventions (placebo and/or control) to evaluate the effects of those interventions on health‐related biomedical and behavioral outcomes and are funded by private, for-profit entities.

All industry clinical trials should be submitted in ALICE and/or CRMS.


Login to ALICE and select Submit New Non-CTA for Review, go to the Industry/Contracting Party section, which is the company with whom we are working on this agreement. If the industry/contracting party name you are looking for is not listed, you can click on Sponsor Not Listed and manually add the new industry/contracting party.

Under the Personnel section enter the following in the order provided:

  • Enter the name of the UNC PD/PI
  • Enter the external contact for the industry/contracting party. This is the person OIC will contact with edits or corrections to the agreement. We must have an email address at minimum.
  • Enter the name of the department administrator. This is the person other than the PI that OIC might contact with questions. This is not required, but it is helpful information for OIC to have.

In Submission Notes provide any additional details or information you think may assist us in while processing and negotiating your agreement.

Central Office Review

To expedite the review process of proposals that include Intellectual PropertyIntellectual Property means a work or invention that is the result of creativity, such as a manuscript or design, to which one has rights and for which one may apply for a patent, copyright, or trademark. issues, an advance copy of the agreement should be sent to OSR who will forward it to the appropriate office (i.e., University Counsel, JT — Please confirm this is now linked properly Office of Technology Commercialization) for review and identification of issues requiring negotiation with the sponsor. Upon completion of the negotiations and legal review, OSR will provide copies of the agreement to the Development Office when appropriate and fulfill its reporting requirements to UNC General Administration.

Proposals are to be submitted with all required documentation. Please refer to the appropriate office’s guidelines:

  • If a proposal budget is revised after it has been submitted to the sponsor and the proposal is still pending final action by the sponsor, please alert the SPS to determine the course of action.
  • If the department receives an agreement from the sponsor in response to a submitted proposal, the agreement should be forwarded to for further processing.

If changes have occurred since the proposal was submitted to the sponsor, please include updated documentation for OSR.

Should there be any question regarding the routing of a proposal or contract for signature, contact the SPS for your department.

Shared Responsibility for Proposal Review

Responsibility for Proposal Review is distributed across three Central Offices. The Sponsored Programs Office (SPO) provides School of Medicine proposal review for most NIH grants and select other agencies. The Office of Clinical Trials (OCT) serves as the central office for non-Federal clinical trials proposals. The Office of Sponsored Research administers the pre-award administration not provided by other offices and all post-award administration. See OSR Roles and Responsibility Matrix.

See OSR Operating Standard 300.01

Deadlines & Submission

Internal University Deadlines

The applicable Central Office must receive finalized proposals for review five business days before the sponsor’s due date. All routing and lower level approvals must be completed before the 5-day deadline.

It is imperative that submissions are received in advance to ensure that the University has sufficient time to review all proposals.

Principal Investigators (PD/PI) and Departmental Administrators are responsible for incorporating the Internal University Deadline into their submission process. Submissions that are received after the 5-day deadline are documented in RAMSeS.

See OSR Operating Standard 300.03

Sponsor Deadlines

Each program announcement and sponsor utilize specific due dates for proposals. This deadline is in addition to any Internal University Deadlines.

Deadlines are included in the individual funding announcement. Please consult with your SPS if there are questions on the exact submission deadline.

Select Sponsor Application Schedules

See OSR Operating Standard 300.03

Sponsor Reviews

Sponsors employ unique methods of selecting projects for funding. The criteria that are used are generally provided either in the proposal announcement or other sponsor guidelines. It is very important to incorporate the merit review criteria into forming a proposal to ensure that all requirements are met.

Select Agency Review Criteria

NIH Review and Award Cycle

Click the image to access more information on NIH’s deadlines.

Post-Submission Requests

General Sponsor Requests

Occasionally, sponsors will request revisions or addendums to be submitted with proposals when reviewing them for possible funding. This can come in the form of more budgetary detail or regulatory compliance information (i.e., Research Subjects ProtocolsThe detailed account of procedures and interaction being completed by a researcher in connection with animal or human subjects. The protocol must be assessed by the appropriate institutional committee.). All formal communications with sponsors must be submitted through the appropriate Central Office for the proposal.

Types of Post Submission Materials

  • Current & Pending or Other SupportThe disclosure of all financial sources-whether Federal, non-Federal, commercial-available in direct support of an individual’s research endeavors, including but not limited to research grants, cooperative agreements, contracts, and institutional awards. Funding for training awards, prizes, and gifts are not required to be included.
  • Research Subjects approvals
  • JT — Please confirm this is now linked properly Certification of Human Subjects Education (CITI)
  • Revised Budget and Budget Justification
  • Biographical Sketch Information
  • University Signing Official approval

Pre-Award Spending

Departmental Administrators can request an advanced ConnectCarolina Project ID if there is a delay in receiving funding. Pre-Award SpendingAny cost incurred prior to the beginning date of the project period or the initial budget period of a competitive segment (under a multi-year award), in anticipation of the award and at the applicant’s own risk, for otherwise allowable costs. is requested in the RAMSeS IPF through a Financial Guarantee. This allows the University to leverage funds in advance of the award. The administering department is responsible for all expenses if project funding is not secured.

Pre-Award Spending may require sponsor prior approval; please speak with your department’s SPS. The usual period for Pre-Award Spending is 90 days before the funding date. Additional time may be requested in select circumstances such as prolonged agreement negotiations.

See OSR Operating Standard 400.06

Project Closeout

All sponsored projects are subject to Federal, University and sponsor guidelines concerning the closing of active projects. The University follows 2 CFR §200.343-345 as the standard for closing awards. It includes, but is not limited to:

  • The review, revision and final submission of all reports and documentation
  • Liquidation of all allowable obligations incurred during the project period
  • Receipt of correct payments from the funding agency
  • Refund of any unobligated cash as necessitated by the sponsor
  • Adjustments in payment amounts must be confirmed and received by the recipient
  • All subrecipient payments must be completed
  • Accurate account of any real and personal property acquired using agency funds

All projects must have liquidated encumbrances, accurate expenses and accurate payroll in ConnectCarolina’s General Ledger, all reports and documentation must be completed and accepted by the sponsor and, all patents, invention statements, etc. must be filed for the project to be marked as closed in the system.

Final Report Types


Technical/Scientific Reports

All technical/scientific reports must be completed by the PD/PI using the sponsor’s required template and contain all required information. They must also be submitted using the correct sponsor portal and within the allocated timeframe. Any delay in the final technical/scientific report can cause a delay in receipt of final payment. If a scientific report is required for OSR to submit a financial report or invoice, notify as soon as the report has been submitted and accepted by the sponsor. If the final technical/scientific report must be submitted with the final financial report, please send it to as urgent.

See OSR Operating Standard 700.01

Financial Reports

All final financial reports/invoices must be prepared and submitted by the OSR. The PD/PI and department administrator should work with their assigned Sponsored Projects Accountant (SPA) to make any needed corrections to a project’s finances within ConnectCarolina. If an expense or change is not reflected in the General Ledger, it will not be reported to the sponsor. Any request that a department receives from OSR must be made promptly to ensure that financial compliance with sponsor, University, and Federal guidelines are met.

See OSR Operating Standard 700.01

Other Documentation

All other documentation required by the sponsor must be submitted by the required deadline using the required template. It may include but is not limited to, invention statements, patent application, release statements, data storage information, patient information, etc. Each sponsor will have different requirements outlined in the agreement or on their website. Please review carefully to ensure compliance with the agreement. If documentation is required for OSR to submit a financial report or invoice, notify as soon as the documentation has been submitted and accepted by the sponsor. If the final documentation must be submitted with the final financial report, please send it to as urgent.

Residual Funds Request

Residual funds are the funds remaining on a sponsored project after the objectives have been met and all final payments have been received and only applies to fixed-price agreementsA type of agreement where the awarding agency or pass-through entity provides a specific level of support without regard to actual costs incurred under the award. This reduces some of the administrative burden and record-keeping requirements for both entities.. A residual transfer can be requested via a journal after the final report/invoice is submitted to the sponsor and all payments have been received. Please confirm the amount remaining with your SPA. If the transfer is for more than 25% of the total funding amount, please attach justification for the amount to the journal that is signed by the PD/PI, department administrator or department head. Please note that not all sponsors allow the University to retain the funds not expended on a project, please confirm this with your SPS.

See OSR Operating Standard 700.04

Records Retention

All University records are subject to General Records Retention and Disposition Schedule. Research and Grant information is found on pages 69-78 and include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Animal records
  • AHEC records
  • Deviations, compliant and violation records
  • Effort certifications records
  • Conflict of interest records
  • Proposal and award records
  • Financial records
  • Technical/Scientific records
  • Human subject/IRB records

Please note that each type of record may have a different retention period. All sponsored projects are also subject to State retention guidelines, of five years and individual sponsor guidelines. Please note that all records must be retained for the longest applicable time. Please contact University Archives and Records Management Services for more information on University retention policies.


Per NC G.S. 159-34 – Single Audit and 2 CFR Subpart 5 – Audit Requirements the University is subject to a single annual audit of all financial records, including all sponsored projects. ConnectCarolina’s General Ledger is the official University book of record that is audited, and this includes all supporting documentation. Any documentation about any aspect of finances may be pulled for review during the applicable retention period. All backup document for all expenses placed on sponsored projects should be retained by the department during the applicable retention periodThe period of time a document is required to be formally retained by an institution, including departments. The OSR’s Cost Analysis and Compliance unit is responsible for all sponsored research audit and should be contacted for any audit-related questions, concerns or request.

See OSR Operating Standard 800.01