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Business and Financial Policies and Procedures

Cost Transfers Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How can cost transfers be avoided and better managed?
A. The need for cost transfers can be reduced if you are familiar with the terms and conditions of the sponsored project. When the business managers and PIs regularly communicate, keeping each other informed of financial decisions, the number of cost transfers is considerably less.

You can avoid most cost transfers before the expenditure is incurred by following these suggested practices:

  • Using the correct C-FOAPAL string or related index code when posting the expenditure
  • Requesting an Anticipation Grant/Fund through the GC-70 application
  • Ensuring arrangements for recurring charges are set up correctly and terminated in a timely manner
  • Ensuring HR appointments are set up correctly

You can better manage the cost transfer process after an expenditure is incurred by:

  • Monitoring sponsored project funds
  • Reconciling sponsored project funds monthly
  • Finalizing cost transfers within 30 days of the project end date

Q. What steps minimize costs transfers while waiting for fully-executed awards?
A. If there is a legitimate need to expend funds for a project prior to the receipt of formal notification of an award from a sponsor, the use of an Anticipation Grant and Fund Code is recommended. An Anticipation Grant and Fund Code can minimize the volume of cost transfers for the project and it is another characteristic of good business practice.

When there is a high degree of certainty that an award will be made, units, at their own risk, may incur costs in anticipation of the award. In this situation, a fund code may be requested from the Office of Business and Financial Services (OBFS), Grants and Contracts Office (GCO) prior to the formal notification by completing a Request to Establish an Anticipation Grant/Fund Form, with the required approvals.

Use the GC70: Anticipation, Expired, or Overdrafted Grant/Fund Request web-based applicationLink opens new window to request an anticipation grant/fund from the GCO.

Q. Can a sponsored project fund be used to accumulate costs for shared goods or services that benefit multiple projects?
A. A sponsored project fund should not be used as a clearing fund to accumulate costs for shared goods or services that benefit multiple projects or activities. Account for the accumulation and redistribution of these shared goods and services in an appropriate stores and services fund, auxiliary fund, or unrestricted departmental fund.

Q. What’s the difference between a current and non-current cost transfer?
A. Current Cost Transfers are those initiated during the accounting period in which the charges were originally recorded in Banner, or within 90 calendar days of the original transaction date in Banner.

Non-Current Cost Transfers are those processed more than 90 calendar days after the original transaction date in Banner. Non-current transfers require additional documentation.

Last Updated: July 1, 2016 | Approved: Senior Associate Vice President for Business and Finance | Effective: July 1, 2016

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