In conjunction with the research councils' grant terms and conditions (T&Cs), this document gives guidance about our expectations of research organisations (ROs) and investigators. It is the ROs' responsibility to ensure that the T&Cs set out in the grant offer document are adhered to and that the project team and admin/finance office are aware of any grant-specific conditions in addition to the T&Cs. In all cases the additional conditions override all others. All Grant Maintenance Requests must be made before the end of the grant.
Please note you can view full economic cost (fEC) frequently asked questions in the grants terms and conditions page.
- Grant suspension
- Grant holder change (not Fellowships)
- Grant transfers
- Grants team
There are two types of no cost extensions: Staff extensions and exceptional extensions (non-staff). Requests will only be considered where they are necessary to enable the objectives of the award to be completed, and should only be for the time actually required for this.
- breaks or delays in the appointment of staff
- maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental or paid sick leave
- extended jury service
- changes from full-time to part-time working.
- Actual dates must always be given - sick leave must be requested with start and end dates.
- Parental leave - Actual dates must be used but can be submitted in advance, as long as the dates have been formally agreed with the RO’s HR department.
- Parental leave extensions should only be requested if the RO has not appointed a person to work on the grant as a replacement for the requested period.
- In the case of time being requested to cover recruitment or training of a new appointee replacing a post vacated unexpectedly, dates must be provided for the individual parts of the extension, and an explanation included as to why this is being requested. For example, “Staff Member left on 01/01/18, recruitment took two months with the new appointee starting on 01/04/18 giving three months of actual vacancy. We would like to request an additional two months for training the new appointee, giving an overall extension request of five months”.
- If additional time is required in order to offer a suitable duration of contract when the vacancy happens towards the end of the grant), the Grant Maintenance Request should include details of the work to be carried out during this period.
- If the absence is towards the end of a grant, but the person is to return to work on the project, a Grant Maintenance Request can be submitted for an extension to cover the time taken to date, with a further request submitted for the remainder when the person returns and the date is known. This will ensure that the grant does not end before the full length of the absence is known.
Please note extension requests for Industrial Case grants must be supported with an attachment from the industrial partner indicating support for the requested extension.
- Actual dates must be given with the explanation of the delaying issues.
- Multiple Grant Maintenance Requests may be requested for ongoing issues occurring towards the end of the grant, until the final resolution date is known.
- The Grant Maintenance Request should reflect the objectives that have been achieved to date and how any outstanding work will be completed within the new time frame.
- No contingency period should be requested; an additional Grant Maintenance Request can be submitted should it become necessary.
- Examples of exceptional reasons for unexpected delays in programmes include (but are not limited to):
- major equipment failures
- major laboratory/building issues
- unforeseen problems with specimen/sample/data collection
- unforeseen problems around acquiring ethical approvals or permits
- unavailability of facilities intrinsic to the project, for example ship/air time.
- Research councils would not expect to see extensions requested for (but not limited to):
- to use unspent funds on supplementary work, on work not specified in the original grant as awarded
- to allow additional papers to be completed and submitted to conferences/journals
- to bridge employment of key staff- keeping them employed until a new (unrelated) grant starts which will employ them
- to allow invoices to be received while the grant is live (invoices for spend occurring during the grant duration can be received in the three month period between the end date of the grant and the final expenditure statement due date)
- to allow attendance at additional conferences unless a case is made with the enhanced impact this would create
- linked projects finishing together.
A grant suspension should be requested when work has temporarily ceased on a grant. This could be because (but not limited to):
- staff have gone on parental leave and there are no other members of staff actively working on the grant
- major building issues, for example fire, which mean that all work has ceased on the grant and is unlikely to resume soon.
In both instances, a suspension should be requested through a Grant Maintenance Request.
A request to recommence the grant, and a further request for a no cost extension for the period that work on the project had stopped, should be submitted when the dates are finalised.
The research councils need to be assured that the replacement meets the eligibility criteria and has the expertise and experience to lead the project to a successful conclusion, in accordance with its research objectives.
To note: When submitting a change of grant holder or Co-Investigator, it is the responsibility of the RO to ensure that they have read the relevant research council eligibility guide and considered any grant-specific conditions. For any queries on the eligibility of a proposed grant holder, the RO should contact the research council for further guidance, prior to the request being made.
As a consequence of any change in Principal Investigator (PI), the new PI must be based at a lead organisation. Therefore if the PI moves to another organisation either the grant goes with them or a new PI must be found for the grant.
Requests should include:
- an explanation as to why the grant needs to be transferred
- details of when the transfer is required to take place.
Requests to transfer a grant will normally be approved with the exception of the following:
- The new research organisation is not eligible to hold a research council grant. Please note transfers to European Union universities may be covered by the Money Follows Researchers Agreement.
- If it is not feasible to transfer the project to a new research organisation that does not have the required facilities to carry out the research.
- If the grant is suspended, before submitting the ‘Grant Transfer request’ the RO must first contact research council grants for the suspension on the grant to be considered.
Please note that this is not a quick process to carry out as the grant needs to be reconciled at the original research organisation before the remaining funds can be transferred to the new research organisation. Please allow at least four months for this process to be completed from the date of the request being made. If the request is urgent, please discuss this with your research office so they can carry out their part of the process in the least possible time.
Grant transfer requests cannot be created and submitted in Je-S when a grant has not yet started (the status of the award is ‘announced’). In these circumstances, please contact the relevant research council for further advice.
Grant clearing dates
Grant payment clearing dates for council-funded grant payments are listed here.
The research council Grants Team provides support for the Je-S System users and the administrative and transactional activities in support of the UK’s seven research councils’ research funding for grants, studentships and fellowships.
The gateway for engaging with the research community is through the Je-S portal. It is through this:
- that applications are submitted
- review documents are exchanged
- grant offers are issued and accepted
- amendment requests are submitted
- payments are tracked and expenditure statements received.
The grants service depends on close cooperation between the research councils and will:
- respond to all enquiries within 10 working days of receipt
- communicate decisions within agreed timescales*
- give notification of decisions within agreed timescales*
- make timely payments*
- maintain up-to-date information on Je-S
- seek feedback from all stakeholders
- acknowledge receipt of complaints promptly and aim to resolve those about the Grants Team services within 10 working days of receipt.
Please see here for contact points.
* Timescales and specific arrangements are agreed between relevant research councils and the Grants Team. Please note that timescales and arrangements may differ depending on the nature of the funding.