Preparing a No Cost Extension Request

At least 20 days prior to the original end date of an award, the Principal Investigator (PI) should submit a request with the approval of their home department either in the form of a letter or an e-mail.

A letter of request must bear the counter-signature of the appropriate department head or designee, and an e-mail request must have appropriate department head or designee copied on the correspondence indicating the extension has been discussed and endorsed by the home department.

For multi-PI awards, ALL Principal Investigators must concur with the request in writing or via e-mail.

For ORSP to review the request on behalf of MUSC, the following minimum information should be included in the request from the PI:

  • Grant number/Award ID
  • Project Title
  • Requested new end date
  • Estimated total amount of remaining funds (including F&A)
  • A budget estimate for use of funds during the extension period
  • Indication if the level of effort for any key personnel (listed in Notice of Award) would be reduced by more than 25% of the level originally proposed (may require sponsor approval depending on award terms)
  • Indication whether these reductions of effort would have any effect on the overall scope of the project
  • External contributors designated as “Investigators” may need to provide annual FCOI disclosures prior to the NCE being processed
  • Copies of the current approvals, if applicable 
  • Indication of any changes in project personnel (internal and/or external) planned during the NCE period
  • If applicable, indication whether the human/animal/biohazards approvals would be maintained and kept current during the extension period
  • Brief technical reason(s) for the requested extension


1) There may be additional information required or a longer lead time for the request depending on the terms and conditions of the particular award and/or sponsor. The specific award terms should be reviewed or the assigned ORSP Grants Administrator can be contacted for assistance.

2) NIH would not require prior approval for the reduction of effort for senior/key personnel for their awards, with the exception of grant programs that have an effort requirement or where terms and conditions prohibit such reductions. The recipient is reminded that active awards must have a measurable level of effort.

An award's assigned Grants Administrator can be contacted for more project-specific guidance.