Extramural Funds

Cost Transfers

UCSB Cost Transfer Policy

A request for adjustment of expenditures (Cost Transfers) shall meet the following tests when the adjustment is to transfer a cost to a restricted fund provided by an external agency for a specific purpose (e.g., funds provided under a gift, endowment, grant, or contract for a specific purpose):
  1. It must relate to individual items of expenditures (e.g., a cylinder of oxygen or fraction thereof, two hours of technical staff when identifiable to a specific cost objective) incurred by the unit requesting the adjustment.
  2. It must contain a reference to the invoice, payroll, or other disbursement document(s) which initiated the original direct charge.
  3. It should be in the same amount originally recorded in the University general ledger (i.e., the whole amount or the appropriate fraction charged to and/or paid by the unit requesting the adjustment). If transferring a fractional amount, the transfer request must contain an explanation supporting a reasonable and equitable method of allocation.
  4. It must be fully explained, justified, and approved by the unit administrator(s) involved in the transaction. (an explanation which merely states that the adjustment being made is "to correct an error," "to transfer to correct project," or "expenditure inadvertently charged to incorrect account/fund" is not sufficient). In the case of adjustments which involve Federal grants and contracts, the certification and approvals must include that of the principal investigator, department head, or other academic official. For non-central transfers processed, the certification and approval of the department head, principal investigator or other academic official must be maintained by the department in accordance with local campus requirements.
  5. It must be recorded via the appropriate financial system tool (such as the payroll direct retro adjustment, the non-payroll expenditure adjustment request, or the financial journal).
  6. It must be monitored by the Controller or equivalent authority of the given campus for compliance with applicable campus and University policies and terms of funding source agreements. The Controller or equivalent authority may delegate this authority to his/her subordinate(s) responsible for the accounts/funds involved.
  7. The University is committed to the accurate and timely maintenance of its financial records. Situations requiring the transfer of recorded costs must be identified and processed expeditiously.  Additionally, special considerations must be given to transfers of cost to federal funds to ensure that the University action meets the administrative standards established by the federal regulations.

    If the expense is being transferred to a federal or federal flow-through account, it must be recorded in the general ledger within 120 days from the close of the month in which the original charge posts to the ledger (for example, the deadline for adjusting a charge which appears in the January ledger will be the May ledger). If because of unavoidable circumstances an adjustment must be made beyond the 120-day period, a full explanation, including a well-documented account of all the events leading to the tardy adjustment, must be provided.