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Grant and Contract Records

For most grant-related financial records, the FSR submission is the trigger date used to signify the start of the record retention period. The trigger represents an event, in order of precedence:

  1. FSR Submission: The date the Financial Status Report (FSR) was submitted to the sponsor. FSR Submission types are Final FSR or Quarterly or Annual FSRs for awards renewed quarterly or annually.
  2. Final Invoice Date: The date the Final Invoice was submitted to the sponsor, where no FSR is required.
  3. Budget Closeout: The date the final budget reconciliation was completed, where the sponsor does not require a FSR or Final Invoice.  Includes invoicable budgets.

Effective May 9, 2014, you can locate the FSR date for a given budget using GrantTracker. If the “Trigger” field is not populated, the date should be available in the notes section of Grant Tracker. Click here to view the step by step guide on locating the trigger date in GrantTracker.

Please note that for sub-budgets, departments should look to the parent budget for the trigger date which is used to signify the start of the retention period.

It is very important to note that for grants renewed on an ongoing basis, the trigger date is based on the annual or quarterly submission, not the final termination of the grant.

Financial records for SNAP grants follow the same retention requirements as any other awards. We use the trigger date of submission of the Financial Status Report (FSR) to begin the retention count-down. The retention period is 6 years after submission of the FSR.

For most other types of awards an FSR is submitted annually or sometimes quarterly through the life of the grant. As a result a department will rarely have accumulated more than 1 year of financial records before the retention period begins.

For a SNAP grant only one FSR is submitted. This submission takes place at the end of the renewal period. We still follow the 6 year retention period for financial records but because we only submit one FSR, a department will have accumulated several years of financial records before that retention period begins.

The University retention requirements are established to ensure the availability of financial records that may be required for audit purposes. These retention periods either meet or exceed federal and state requirements. State and federal auditors have a 6 year window of opportunity to audit financial records that begins either when the FSR is submitted, the date the Final Invoice was submitted to the sponsor where no additional FSR is required, or the date the final budget reconciliation was completed where the sponsor does not require a FSR or Final Invoice. Unless you have a SNAP grant, these submissions or final budget reconciliations take place annually or sometimes quarterly for your grant. Only departments with SNAP grants must retain their financial records for the full term of the award.

Original receipts should be forwarded to the UW except in the following circumstances:

  • Locally based staff who are reimbursed from an established UW office in country (e.g. UW Kenya, I-TECH local offices), with the agreement of UW Banking Operations.
  • Local laws require original receipts to be retained in country

In the above cases scanned copies of receipts can be forwarded to the UW.

For studies that are considered clinical studies, use either the "Research Data – Non-Biomedical Treatment or Intervention" or "Research Data – Biomedical Treatment or Intervention" series in the Research and Grant/Contract Records section of the UW General Records Retention Schedule. Choose the series description that best fits your study.

Since a renewal is an authorization for follow‐up support to a project, for administrative records and research data, the retention period begins after the final renewal ends.

Renewals have no impact on financial records.

You can send boxes for storage at any time. On receipt of the boxes we would use the current anticipated study end date as the first trigger. This is the date the current renewal is projected to end. As your stored boxes near the end of their retention period, you will receive an automatic notification email from our database asking for the most current award renewal date. Each time we receive a new projected end date we will revise the study end trigger date in our database.

Please note that we will not start the count-down of the actual retention until there are no more changes to the trigger date. The retention clock will not start until the award is no longer renewed.

Yes it is. However, please review Grants Information Memorandum 37 to ensure the principal investigator is aware of the compliance issues regarding the transfer of research data.