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Procedure: 8-21

Effective: July 1, 2001

Owner: Office of Sponsored Programs

Latest Revision: June 26, 2002

Retroactive Cost Transfers for Expenditures

This Procedure is being revised. Please follow the procedural steps outlined herein, but check back soon for the updated version. Thank you.

Procedure Steps

Scope | Policy | Responsibility | Distribution | Ownership


This procedure covers retroactive cost transfers relating to grant expenditure adjustments over 90 days old.

This procedure does not cover the treatment of conventional cost transfers or labor distribution cost transfers. In these cases see Procedure 8-20 and 8-22.

Policy [Top]

VIII.C.1 -- Compliance with Sponsor Requirements

Responsibility [Top]

Departmental personnel are responsible for preparing and submitting the cost transfer request with the knowledge and approval of the Principal Investigator.

The Office of Sponsored Programs is responsible for reviewing and approving cost transfer requests, and notifying the department if need be.

Distribution [Top]

Department/School Administrator
Central Grants Accountant
Assistant Director for Research Accounting

Ownership [Top]

The Assistant Vice President for Research Administration is responsible for ensuring that this procedure is necessary, reflects actual practice, and supports University policy.

Procedure Steps [Top]

This activity is performed whenever departments prepare cost transfers over 90 days old on grant PTAs.

This procedure continues from 8-20.

  1. Departments submit an email retroactive request to listserve account.

  2. When requesting a retroactive cost transfer, please be sure to answer the following questions:

    • Why does this charge belong on the grant to which it is being moved? In other words, how is it allocable?
    • Why was the charge put on the wrong award?
    • How are you going to prevent this from happening in the future?
    • Why is the cost transfer request over 90 days old, and why did it take so long to discover the error?

  3. The requests are required to include the following information:

    • The PTAs being charged and credited in the move.
    • The date(s) of the expenditure(s) being moved.
    • The corresponding transaction number(s).
    • The amount and the expenditure type for the expenditures being moved. This can be summarized by expenditure type.
    • The reason why the expenditures should be moved. "To correct error" or "to transfer to correct project" is not sufficient.
    • The reason why the request is over 90 days old.

      NOTE: If any of these items are missing the request will be rejected.
      NOTE: No transactions can be processed in Oracle after the close date of the award.

  4. Cost transfers involving grant and contract PTAs are reviewed by OSP, and will be reversed if they do not follow the guidelines above.

  5. If the cost transfer is reversed, OSP will notify the originating department.


The following link provides guidance in the documentation and processing of Labor Distribution (LD) Adjustments impacting sponsored projects (G and Z awards). Once this new process has stabilized, this guidance will be absorbed into the University’s formal procedures. Questions should be directed to the Director of Compliance and Outreach in the Office of Sponsored Programs.

End of Activity


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