Award Close out

The primary responsibility for award closeout lies with the Grant Manager and the Sponsored Programs Financial Operations (SPFO) office.  

This section deals with Award Closeout procedures. Georgetown  University  must  comply  with  federal  and  other  sponsoring  agencies’  requirements  in  regards  to  financial  reporting  and  closeout.

Sponsors require certain reports in order to close out an award. Therefore, there are important considerations to make sure the project gets a properly close out. The procedure can change depending on the policies of the sponsoring agency and whether the support was in the form of a grant or contract. The terms and conditions for close out are generally included in the award. The standard terms require that the following reports are submitted within 120 days of the expiration of the award.


Upon the completion of an Award there are various reports that are required to closeout the Award. 

Type of ReportResponsibility
Financial  Report: A  financial  report  is  an  accounting  of  expenditures  and  obligations  incurred  during  the  period  of  performance  and/or  at  the conclusion  of  the  sponsored  project. Sponsored Programs Financial Operations (SPFO) is responsible for filing the financial report, the property accounting report, and other required close-out documents, if applicable.
Progress/Technical   Report: Programmatic   or   technical   reports   submitted   by   the   PI   in   accordance with due dates as specified in the award documentPI: The Principal Investigator is responsible for filing the final technical report in accordance with the schedule contained in the award document or in the sponsor’s published regulations
Invention/Patent   Report: Report   submitted   to   sponsors   providing   detail   information   on   invention/patent on a project.  Format of report is normally provided by sponsor and is included in award documentation.The Office of Research Services (ORS) (in conjunction with the PI) is responsible for submitting the final invention statement. OTC will certify this statement if invention/ partent must be certified at the time of the close-out
Property/Equipment  Inventory  Report: Inventory listing  of  property/equipment  purchased  with award/grant funds.  Sponsors normally provide format for reporting inventory.Sponsored Programs Financial Operations (SPFO) is responsible for completing and submitting the final inventory of equipment report. The PI should assist with answering any questions or addressing any issues that arise regarding equipment or property.

–Technical Reports

In accepting awards, the University is assuming responsibility for meeting all of the technical and financial reporting requirements of the sponsor. Specific interim and final report requirements are usually included in the sponsor’s terms and conditions or other award documents or in a policy guide or manual. These requirements vary from sponsor to sponsor.

The Principal Investigator bears responsibility for preparing and submitting the technical reports to the sponsor. It is SPFO policy not to close out an award until we have received some form of confirmation that the PI has met the technical reporting requirements. 

The Office of Research Services ORS (in conjunction with the PI) is responsible for submitting the final invention statement. ORS is responsible for having either a copy of the technical report or a copy of the sponsor’s verification of receipt of the report and recording it into GMS as a deliverable. 

–Financial Reports

Upon project termination, the SPFO Financial Analyst will review the account and work with the Grant administrator to determine the final figure to be reported to the sponsor on the financial report or final invoice.

In most cases for federal awards, final financial reports and final invoices must be submitted no later than 90 days from the award end date. State and private agency deadlines may vary. To meet sponsor deadlines there needs to be clear and timely communication between the PI, department, the Grant Administrator and SPFO Financial Analysts. SPFO will submit the final financial report/invoice to the sponsor upon agreement with the local units on the final figure to be reported.

–Patent Reports

Most sponsors require reports about patents and inventions made during the conduct of a sponsored project. If a patentable idea, invention or discovery is made as a result of a sponsored project, the Office of Commercialization and Technology (OTC)  needs to be involved. The PI should contact OTC  as soon as it is practical to discuss the disclosure, to avoid premature public disclosure, and if appropriate, to start the patent process.

If no patentable idea, invention or discovery is made as a result of a sponsored project, a Final Invention Report to the sponsor is still required, indicating as such (i.e. a ‘negative invention report’). ORS will consult the PI at project closeout, and if there are no inventions to disclose, ORS will file the Final Invention Report with the sponsor.

For additional details, consult the Division of Financial Affairs Sponsored Projects Financial Reporting and Financial Closeouts Policy and other applicable policies.

Financial Reports process

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Submission deadline for most final invoices is within 45 – 60 days after the contract or subaward end date. (to facilitate submission within 90 days to Prime sponsor, e.g., NIH). Sponsor may NOT honor reimbursement on invoices submitted after 45-60 days.


As part of the close out process, the Grant administrator needs to do the following (if necessary):

  • Notify the Grant Manager and payroll of an account change for future costs such as printing, telephone, postage and salary/fringe. 
  • Promptly transfer all erroneous charges, clearing deficits and post-term charges.


Overdrafts occur when cumulative expenses exceed the amount awarded by the sponsor and could be considered voluntary uncommitted cost sharing. If there is an “overdraft” in the account at the end of the project, it is the responsibility of the principal investigator and the Grant Manager to work with the Sponsored Programs Financial Operations to resolve the shortfall of funds.

Overdrafts Process

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The Office of Research Services (in conjunction with the PI) is responsible for submitting the final invention statement.  Sponsored Programs Financial Operations (SPFO) is responsible for filing the financial report, the property accounting report, and other required close-out documents, if applicable.


If an “unexpended balance” of funds remains on the account at the close of the project, the disposition of the balance will be in accordance with the sponsor’s policies and regulations.


Extensions can be made for three reasons: 1) to permit an orderly phase-out of a project that will not receive continued support, 2) to maintain continuity of support while a renewal application is under review, and 3) to ensure that the originally approved project is adequately completed. No-cost extensions are not permitted simply to use unexpended funds. After receiving your request, ORS will either extend your account or send a formal extension request to the sponsor depending on the terms and conditions of the award.

Requests for “extensions” or “supplements” must be addressed to the sponsor through the Office of Research Services to, or in the case of the College, contact Jacklyn Smith ( ORS is responsible for obtaining prior approval when necessary and for reviewing these requests for allowability and supporting documentation.