No-Cost Time Extension

A no-cost time extension is an extension of the grant ending date with no additional funding.

Carry-forward of funding in a continuation grant is the approved transfer of unobligated grant funds or cost match funds forward to subsequent funding periods.


Federal regulations provide a set of criteria for approving a one-time extension of the expiration date of a federal award for up to twelve months (OMB A-110, Subpart C, .25(e)(2).

The extension may be issued unless one or more of the following conditions apply:

  • The terms and conditions of the award prohibit the extension
  • The extension requires additional federal funds
  • The extension involves any change in the approved objectives or scope of the project

Note:This one-time extension may not be exercised merely for the purpose of using unobligated balances.


Letter of Request

The Principal Investigator (PI) must prepare a letter describing the need for an additional period of time to complete the project objectives. The letter must address programmatic issues and may describe justifiable delays, such as the loss of a skilled technician. The fact that there may be money remaining in the project's account is not sufficient reason for an extension. If the sponsor's approval must be sought, the letter should be addressed to the grants officer, but sent first to SPA for an authorizing signature. Be sure to provide signature lines for the Project Director and SPA Director.

Timing of Request

If sponsor approval must be sought, and if the sponsor is a federal agency, requests to extend a project period must be received by the agency at least 10 days before the expiration date of the grant, unless otherwise specified.

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