Research Topic

Fixed Price Awards


Definition: An award in which the sponsor agrees to pay the University a set amount to complete a mutually agreed upon scope of work.


The award amount is an estimate of costs necessary to perform the work, using costing methods that conform to federal cost principles and University policy. Once the award is accepted, the Principal Investigator (PI) must perform the work, even if the funding is inadequate. However, the University is not required to return any unused funds and a refund is only necessary in cases where project deliverables cannot be met. Financial reporting is not typically required.

To satisfy fixed price award requirements:

  • Charge all allowable direct costs to the award and not to any other source of funds.
  • The unit must transfer any award overdrafts to discretionary funds.
  • Request a no-cost extension if:
    • The agreed upon scope of work will not be completed by the award end date AND/OR
    • The final deliverables will not be provided within the agreed upon timeframe.

Residual Balance Transfer and Closeout

  • The PI must provide justification for any fixed price award with a residual balance greater than 25% of the total funding. The PI should submit the justification to SPA via e-mail.

The justification should assure that:

(a) the original estimate was consistent with federal cost principles and University policy

(b) allowable direct costs were charged to the award and not other sources of funds

  • SPA will review:
    • All fixed price awards for closeout on a regular basis.  Fixed price awards with residual balances should not remain open indefinitely after the award end date in Banner. 
    • Expired federal fixed price awards based on the specific award terms and conditions and in accordance with the Sponsored Projects Closeout policy.
    • Expired non-federal fixed price awards on at least a quarterly basis. 
  • After all required closeout items requested of the PI and/or department are received, and SPA’s closeout review is complete, eligible balances will be transferred by the close of the following month. 
  • SPA will transfer eligible residual balances to a unit fixed price allowance account established for this purpose in the institutional allowance account range. F&A will be assessed on the balance at the following rate:
Calculation is Inception to Date F and A Assessed Divided by Total Costs  Equal to Residual Balance F and A


Related Research Topics