No Cost Extensions

The Principal Investigator (PI) is expected to complete work under sponsored agreements within the project period specified in the award. However, if the PI needs additional time to complete the approved scope of work, within the limit of funds already made available, the sponsor may consider a request to extend the expiration date of the award at no additional cost.

Most federal sponsors do not consider the fact that funds remain unobligated at the expiration of the award as sufficient justification for an extension of time. Normally, no single extension may exceed twelve months and only in exceptional cases will more than one extension be granted.

Procedures for No-Cost Extensions

The request must be submitted to OSP using the change request in RASS. (No-Cost Extensions cannot be requested solely for the purpose of utilizing remaining funds.) Requests must be submitted to the sponsor by OSP. 

  • If the project involves the use of humans or animals as research subjects, an updated approval valid for the length of the extension will be necessary.
  • If the portion of the work that involved the use of research subjects is completed, a statement indicating such should be provided.

The request should generally contain:

  1. The length of time for which the extension is being requested and a justification for the extension.
  2. A brief statement as to progress and work remaining to be completed.
  3. An estimate of funds expected to remain unobligated on the scheduled expiration date.

Under the "Uniform Guidance 2 CFR §200.308 Revision of budget and program plans," the first request for a no-cost extension under all participating Federal agencies (except the Office of Naval Research) may be approved by the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). 

OSP must notify the sponsor at least ten (10) days prior to the expiration of the award and therefore requires the departmental request at least fifteen (15) days prior. After OSP approval of a request, a letter (or for NSF, a FastLane notification) is sent to the sponsor via the program official, with a copy to the grants official.

Second no-cost extension requests require the approval and written authorization of the sponsor. These requests must be submitted to the sponsor forty-five (45) days prior to the expiration of the award and therefore requires the departmental request at least fifty (50) days prior.

Note: Sponsored Financial Services (SFS) will not extend a project without written notification. If no written notification is received before the report is due, a financial report will be sent to the sponsor under the original end date. Should a no-cost extension be received after the reporting period, the end date will be changed, and the project may continue