Award and Project Closeout

At Case Western Reserve University, the closeout of a grant is a critical phase in its life cycle and should commence four months before the end date to accurately forecast expenses and make any necessary financial adjustments.

Responsibilities of Principal Investigators (PIs)

Principal investigators (PIs) are responsible for overseeing the proper closeout of sponsored projects, including the timely submission of all required reports. Such reports may include:

Final Technical Reports

  • Completed and submitted by the PI.
  • Requires careful consideration of equipment disposition and coordination with Property Accounting and the sponsor, if necessary.

Financial Reports

  • Prepared and submitted by the Post-Award Services team.
  • These reports are based on information from the general ledger and documentation provided by the department.
  • PIs must assure that such documentation is adequate and readily available. In addition, PIs are responsible for ensuring that any necessary adjustments are completed and the necessary documentation received at the time of the closeout. 
  • In addition, some financial reports may require the PI's signature. 
  • Projects are considered completed or "closed out" after the sponsor receives and approves all reports as required by the terms and conditions of the award.

Failure to submit required reports by the sponsor's deadline can result in the sponsor withholding continued funding or final payment on an award, and/or suspension and termination of any and all active awards.

Department Administrator Responsibilities

  • Review sponsor reporting requirements and advise the PI of those requirements and deadlines.
  • Coordinate with central offices on reports requiring authorized signatures.
  • Monitor expenditures on the project and review outstanding encumbrances and/or anticipated expenditures.
  • Obtain necessary signatures/approvals on all closeout documents including final recaps.

Patent/Invention Report 

Property Report 

  • Completed and submitted by the Financial Compliance Office in conjunction with the PI and Controller’s Office.
  • Requires careful consideration of equipment disposition and coordination with Property Accounting and the sponsor, if necessary.

Closeout Process

  • An electronic notification will be sent notifying all principal investigators and their departmental administrators of awards that are coming to a close, and will provide them with the steps needed to properly close out the project. These notifications will be issued 60 and 30 days in advance of the expiration date of a competitive segment of an award.  
  • If a no cost extension (NCE) is needed, this should be requested through Sparta and submitted to PASA in a timely manner. See the guidelines for specific directions on the submission of a NCE. 

Additional Closeout Tasks

  • Confirm the end date 
  • Collect purchasing cards
  • Close related contracts 
  • Suspend speedtype use 
    • Verify that each person who has been delegated authority to spend on the speedtype to stop spending.
  • Personnel 
    • Change salary distribution for all personnel.
  • Close open encumbrances 
    • Supply funds encumbered as of the closing date can normally be held open until invoices are received. 
    • Encumbrances related solely to the preparation of a final report, e.g., printing and duplicating costs, can normally be held open. 
    • Other encumbrances, i.e., for equipment, cannot normally be held open. 
  • Close recurring charges and standing orders
    • Make sure that all offices that have the speedtype on file for charging remove that number, e.g., Animal Resource Center, internal billings, dry ice, etc.
  • Reconcile speedtype  
    • Departments should review all expenditures long before the project ends. 
  • Resolve overspending (deficit)
    • When deficits exist, the department administrator is responsible for removing the overage prior to or during closeout.
  • Review financial reports 
    • A recap and draft of the financial report will be sent to the department for review, when applicable.
  • Transfer balances (for fixed-price awards) 
    • When balances exist at the end of a fixed-price award, the department should review with the PI to ensure all deliverables have been met and review the agreement for the disposition of remaining funds.
    • If the agreement does not specify, the balance may be transferred to a non-sponsored project and/or request an extension to continue to use the balance for related expenditures.
  • Inactivation of the Speedtype
    • Once a project is completely closed “zeroed out” (expenses = budget = income and no outstanding receivables and/or advances) the project will be eligible for inactivation.
    • Inactive speedypes are no longer available for use in PeopleSoft. An inactive project is identified with an 'i' in the status field. Note: Some reports are still available for review through peoplesoft.
    • Non financial closeout task
  •  Materials and Equipment 
    • Review equipment inventory 
    • Make sure all equipment assigned to the project is where it belongs. 
  • Dispose of university equipment and materials 
    • To dispose of equipment or materials, contact Equipment Accounting. Items are screened to determine their condition and possible reutilization. Functional items of value will be taken to the inventory warehouse for eventual use within the university. 
    • Transfer or sale of university equipment or materials outside the university can only be completed with prior approval.
  •  Submit inventory and equipment reports 
    • Equipment Accounting prepares and submits inventory and equipment reports.