legal implications, documentation, laws, consortiums

2.3.6 Legal Implications of Applications

An applicant must be an eligible entity and must submit a complete application in accordance with established receipt (deadline) dates in order to be considered for support. The signature of an AOR on the application certifies that the organization will comply with all applicable assurances and certifications referenced in the application. The applicant organization is responsible for verifying conformity with the most current guidelines for all administrative, fiscal, and scientific information in the application, including the F&A costNecessary costs incurred by a recipient for a common or joint purpose benefitting more than one cost objective, and not readily assignable to the cost objectives specifically benefitted, without effort disproportionate to the results achieved. To facilitate equitable distribution of indirect expenses to the cost objectives served, it may be necessary to establish a number of pools of F&A (indirect) costs. F&A (indirect) cost pools must be distributed to benefitted cost objectives on bases that will produce an equitable result in consideration of relative benefits derived. (indirect costNecessary costs incurred by a recipient for a common or joint purpose benefitting more than one cost objective, and not readily assignable to the cost objectives specifically benefitted, without effort disproportionate to the results achieved. To facilitate equitable distribution of indirect expenses to the cost objectives served, it may be necessary to establish a number of pools of F&A (indirect) costs. F&A (indirect) cost pools must be distributed to benefitted cost objectives on bases that will produce an equitable result in consideration of relative benefits derived.) rate. The AOR's signature further certifies that the applicant organization has the ability to provide appropriate administrative and scientific oversight of the project and agrees to be fully accountable for the appropriate use of any funds awarded and for the performance of the grant-supported project or activities resulting from the application. NIH will not accept forms or other documentation bearing generic departmental signatures or their electronic equivalent (e.g., Department of Sponsored Research). All forms and documentation submitted to the NIH must reflect the name of the individual, electronic or otherwise, with the appropriate institutional authority to submit such information.

Applicants for and recipients of NIH grant funds, whether such funds are received through a grant, indirectly under a contract or consortium agreementA formalized agreement whereby a research project is carried out by the recipient and one or more other organizations that are separate legal entities. Under the agreement, the recipient must perform a substantive role in the conduct of the planned research and not merely serve as a conduit of funds to another party or parties. These agreements typically involve a specific level of effort from the consortium organization's PD/PI and a categorical breakdown of costs, such as personnel, supplies, and other allowable expenses, including F&A costs. The relationship between the recipient and the collaborating organizations is considered a subaward relationship. (See Consortium Agreements chapter in IIB)., or by a fiscal agent acting on another organization's behalf, or as student assistance under a training grant, are responsible for and must adhere to all applicable Federal statutes, regulations, and policies, including income tax regulations. Questions concerning the applicability of income tax regulations to grant funds should be directed to the IRS. The applicant also is expected to be in compliance with applicable State and local laws and ordinances.

Applicants may be required to provide proof of organizational eligibility (such as proof of non-profit status), trainee or fellow eligibility and citizenship, or other eligibility information. Applications also must demonstrate compliance (or intent to comply), through certification or other means, with a number of public policy requirements. The more significant of the public policy requirements for the purpose of peer review are those concerning research involving human subjects; inclusion of genders, members of minority groups, and children in clinical research; and research involving live vertebrate animals. Part II details public policy requirements and cost and administrative policies.

There are times when an institution desires to use a Foundation or other similar organization to provide administrative services for NIH grants. These situations are often complex and each situation is unique when determining which organization is the appropriate applicant institution. Foundations, particularly those associated with institutions already recognized as NIH recipient organizations, should contact DGP, OPERA before attempting to separately register as an applicant organization.

Similarly, when new consortiums are formed where the consortium members are already separately recognized as NIH recipient organizations, DGP, OPERA should be contacted before attempting to separately register as a new applicant organization.