Set Up An Award

Your proposal has been submitted and awarded — now what? To begin using your funding and conducting research, you must first contact the Office of Sponsored Programs Administration to set up your award. 

We can guide you through the process, including: 

There are a few major types of awards:

Grant:Provides Assistance with few restrictions. Award document requires minimal negotiation, refers to general terms and conditions.

Cooperative Agreement: Provides assistance with substantial negotiation between parties. Substantial involvement by Sponsor.

Contracts: Provides assistance for tangible (goods & services) with scope of work conceived by Sponsor. Detailed terms and FAR Clauses included. May involve lengthy negotiation process. Restrictive in rebudgeting and changes to contract requiring sponsor approval. Detailed reports required, often monthly.

Awards can also come in the form of letters, Sponsored Research Agreements, Purchase Orders, etc. Notice of awards are typically received by the Office of Sponsored Programs Grants Administration, although on occasion a PI may be notified directly. These notices should be forwarded to SPA for review, negotiation if needed, and processing.

When the notice of grant award and related terms and conditions are accepted by the University, a chartifield will be established in Peoplesoft. The PI and the PI’s departmental representative (UBM) will be notified when this process is completed and asked to review the UBM 13A report which contains pertinent award information (start and end date, budget, Co-PIs, RIF Designation, department designation, etc.) before activation of the speedtype for spending.

Industry-sponsored projects may involve different requirements and steps. To learn more about industry projects, please visit our Industry Partnerships page.

While waiting for a funding decision to be made, sponsors may require the submission of additional documentation. During the time between proposal submission and the anticipated award date, you will want to begin the process of obtaining and preparing the information that may be required. You may also receive reviews and scoring information that can assist in determining the chances of funding. Please keep in mind that certain components (e.g. IRB, IACUC) may require a submission and review process that, if not completed during the JIT period, could result in a delay of the award being issued.

Typical Items That May Be Requested For "Just In Time" Documentation Submissions:

- Updated Budget and Budget Justification

- Updated Current and Pending Other Support

- IRB Approvals

- IACUC Approvals

- Human Subjects Education Verification

- A Copy of Our Institutional Negotiated F&A Rate Agreement

Setting up an award typically follows a set process, which includes:

- Receipt and Review of Award document by OSPA Grants Management Specialist. Negotiate language or terms and conditions if necessary.

- Review and approval of final, negotiated version of Award document by PI, verifying start and end dates, amount of funding, scope of work.

- Upon establishment of the award in Peoplesoft a Chartfield Milestone e-mail will be generated and routed to the PI and designated contacts.

- Review of Award Summary Report (University Report UBM13A) by PI and departmental contact and requesting changes via e-mail or approving via e-mail.

- Posting of approved budget and activating Speedtype to begin spending on the project.

- Preparation of subaward, if applicable, per information submitted at time of proposal, by GCA team member and reviewed/approved by GMS team member.

- Subaward sent via e-mail to PI for review and approval.

- Subaward sent to Subawardee Institution for review, negotiation if needed and signature of authorized official then returned to UL OSPA for final signature.

- Subaward set-up in Peoplesoft Purchasing Module Contract Panel for payment of invoices when received.

**PI may request the award be set-up based upon a guarantee pending receipt of award.

When a Principal Investigator (PI) or Program Director (PD) is anticipating the issuance of an award from an external sponsor, he/she with the support of his/her College/School/Unit (CSU) may request that the chartfield and speedtype be established in advance of receipt of the official award notice based upon/insured by a guarantee of funding from an unrestricted funding source.

A Pre-Award Guarantee may be requested to 1) allow for pre-award spending in advance of the project’s start date, if authorized by the sponsoring agency or 2) allow for the chartfield and speedtype to be established based upon the actual anticipated start date should delays in receipt of the notice of award occur or be anticipated. Download the Pre-Award Guarantee request form here.

The Pre-Award Guarantee can request funding for:

Specific budget categories at any budget amount up to the anticipated award amount for the category (e.g, salary and fringe benefits only); OR The entire proposed project budget.

College/School/Unit Procedure: The request for a Pre-Award Guarantee speedtype must be initiated by the PI/PD or their departmental administrator following approval by their chair/unit head or Dean. The completed and signed request form should be sent to the Office of Sponsored Programs Administration (OSPA) via the OSPA service account ( The request must commit a non-sponsored funding source to cover any expenses that are not ultimately covered by the anticipated award. The request must be consistent with the Proposal Clearance Form (PCF) or eProposal previously submitted, or must accompany a PCF/eProposal submission. Pre-Award Guarantee budgets must include salaries and fringe benefits if they are to be charged during the pre-award period.

If the University does not receive the anticipated award, the responsible CSU must transfer all expenses posted to the Pre-Award Guarantee speedtype to an unrestricted account.

In those instances in which a project will continue into another fiscal year (such as an annually renewed state project), OSPA can establish a chartfield/speedtype for the next year during the annual “Planning and Budget Preparation” period. This allows payroll appointments to continue into the new fiscal year. The PI/PD must make a request using the process outlined above.

OSPA Procedure: Once received by OSPA, the Pre-Award Guarantee request will be assigned to the appropriate OSPA core and an OSPA Specialist will work with the Principal Investigator and the CSU to solicit and validate any additional information or material that may be necessary to establish the speedtype. As part of the process, project personnel will have their Conflict of Interest/Attestation and Disclosure status validated by the COI Office. Once approved and posted, the Principal Investigator and the CSU will receive an email confirmation from an OSPA Grants & Contracts Assistant confirming establishment of the Pre-Award Guarantee. OSPA expects to process and finalize a Pre-Award Guarantee request within 3-5 business days of receipt of all required documentation.

An increasing number of faculty members are transferring to the University of Louisville and bringing with them grants and contracts that were originally awarded to their former institution.  In an attempt to assist everyone with the transfer process, below is an outline of documentation required when transferring a National Institutes of Health award.  The process for other sponsors including Private Non-Profit Agencies vary and will be addressed on an individual basis.

From The Original Grantee Institution:

- Official Relinquishing Statement

- Provision of the effective date of relinquishment (should be on Relinquishing Statement)

- Estimated unexpended Direct and F&A Cost balances from the current budget period  (Carryover from previous budget periods should not be included in these amounts)

- Statement of Intent concerning the transfer of any equipment

From The New Grantee Institution (UofL):

(At the top of each page you should include "Change of Grantee Institution" in the header)

- New face page signed by UofL authorized official (PHS 398 form page)

- Description of the facilities at UofL (using the PHS 398 form page)

- Detailed budget for the initial (transfer) budget period

- When future commitments exist, categorical budgets for those periods

NOTE:  Each budget should be based upon the previously recommended levels.  If we are transferring mid award year and the previous institution had a lower F&A rate than UofL, we will honor that rate for the remainder of that year; however, we will apply our current negotiated F&A rate for all remaining years.  If the previous institution had a higher F&A rate we apply our rate for all future years with excess F&A in the first mid award year redistributed as direct costs.

- For a mid award year transfer, the initial budget should be based upon the unobligated balance being relinquished by the original institution as reflected on the Relinquishing Statement.

- If the grant currently includes salary support for the PI or any other transferring member(s) of the project and continued salary support is not required at UofL, a statement regarding the proposed rebudgeting of these funds is required

- List of equipment to be transferred from the original grantee institution

- Progress report which will serve in lieu of a final progress report for the original institution

- Statement concerning the current research plan and an indication of whether the original plan has changed.  If changed, provide appropriate details

- Biographical sketches of all new key personnel associated with the project

- Other support pages for all key personnel associated with the project

- A new checklist applying UofL's current F&A rate

- Special justification is required to request the transfer of a grant with less than 6 months remaining in the project

- A completed and signed Proposal Clearance Form

NIH is operating under a continuation resolution, the "Further Continuing Appropriations and Other Extensions Act, 2024 (Public Law 118-22)”, that applies the terms and conditions of the Consolidated Appropriation Act, 2023. This Act restricts the amount of direct salary to Executive Level II of the Federal Executive pay scale.

Effective January 1, 2024, the current salary cap is $221,900, see NOT-OD-24-057. This rate is based on a 12 month appointment. This translates to $18,491.67/month or $166,425 for a faculty with a 9-month appointment. For awards already issued in FY 2024, if funds are available and the salary cap increase is consistent with the institutional base salary, recipients may re-budget funds to accommodate the new salary cap level.

The following items have been developed to provide guidance in complying with the DHHS salary cap requirements and to aid departments in calculating the appropriate salary that can be charged directly to DHHS sponsored programs and the salary “over the cap” that needs to be captured in the cost share account and funded from an unrestricted source.

The worksheet should be completed for any individual with an Institutional Base Salary (IBS) over the DHHS Salary Cap.

Specific tabs have been created and can be used:

    • At “Proposal Stage” when preparing a DHHS proposal budget.
    • At “Award Stage” when preparing a budget for the awarded year and to direct Payroll distribution.
    • At “Effort Reporting Stage” during the bi-annual effort report certification to verify the required “over the cap” salary and to certify total effort on all DHHS/NIH awards.


* The DHHS agencies to which the salary cap applies include not only NIH but also CDC, ACF, CMS, FDA, HRSA, AHRQ and SAMHSA.