Direct Vs Indirect Costs

Direct Vs Indirect Costs
7 minutos

Indirect Cost

The MTDC base is a subset of the total direct costs of the project, excluding such items as equipment, student tuition, research patient care costs, rent and the first $25,000 of subrecipient charges. The approval of indirect cost rates are usually formalized by a rate agreement signed by the federal awarding agency and the county administrator, who is the authorized organizational representative for the County. However, the DHHS does not provide an NICRA, but simply requires the County to have an annual Cost Allocation Plan prepared which details how the County derives its indirect cost rates. The Texas Health and Human Services requires all awards of state and federal grants from the Department of State Health Services or Health and Human Services Commission to have an established and approved rate in place to recover indirect costs. Charging indirect costs without an approved indirect cost rate may result in cost disallowance and the grantee may be required to reimburse the funding agency. Indirect costs are costs used by multiple activities, and which cannot therefore be assigned to specific cost objects.

DGA and DACS negotiate the award agreement with the awardee organizations. Awardees must have a detailed understanding of their terms and conditions related to the ICR or award specific rates to correctly calculate indirect cost recovery charges and any potential post-award adjustments. A predetermined fixed ICR is a permanent rate established for a discrete period of time that corresponds to one or more of the organization’s fiscal years.

Limitations Effecting Reimbursement Of Indirect Costs

Entities must complete the HHS Indirect Cost Rate Group templates when requesting a negotiated rate. Indirect costs are expenses that are necessary for general and administrative operation of the organization and are not easily traced back to a specific grant, contract, activity or project function. Indirect costs are commonly referred to as overhead or facilities and administration costs. These costs are considered common or shared and are incurred in support of more than one cost objective. Approved restricted and unrestricted Indirect Cost Rates for use during the grant periods were distributed through DOE Homeroom page. Please log on to Homeroom to access your rates and supporting schedules.

Where an organization’s indirect costs benefit its major functions in varying degrees, indirect costs must be accumulated into separate indirect cost pools. Each indirect cost pool must then be allocated individually to benefitting functions by means of a base which best measures the relative benefits. Often an entity will have a fringe rate, overhead rate and G&A rate or just a fringe rate and another single indirect cost rate (overhead/G&A). The checklist below addresses the documentation to provide and steps needed when seeking a revised provisional rate and/or final rates. This checklist is also included in Appendix IV, “Indirect Cost Rate Proposal Checklist for Subsequent NICRAs,” and includes the basic instructions to complete and send your revised provisional or final indirect cost rate proposal. The following allocation bases are acceptable examples for use when indirect costs are allocated to benefiting cost objectives by means of an indirect cost rate.


A problem may arise in transactions between parent organizations and their affiliates when the parent organization has an equity interest in the affiliate. When an equity interest exists, any profits made by the affiliate improve the equity interest of the parent. If an affiliate sells a good or service to the parent and the selling price includes a profit to the affiliate, the parent’s equity interest in the affiliate has been increased.

  • Completed certificate of indirect costs, signed by an organization representative who has the authority to contractually bind the organization.
  • For example, if an employee is hired to work on a project, either exclusively or for an assigned number of hours, their labor on that project is a direct cost.
  • The base of application for this example is total costs excluding G&A expenses.
  • This includes activities involving the training of individuals in research techniques where such activities utilize the same facilities as other research and development activities.
  • The high indirect cost may also reflect that people of working age, and not only the elderly, are afflicted by rheumatic conditions, and the conditions are chronic.

Eliminate from indirect costs capital expenditures and those stipulated as unallowable by OMB Circular or program legislation. It’s important to know the difference between the types of costs because it gives you a greater understanding of your product or service, thus leading to more competitive pricing. In addition, when tracking direct and indirect costs, you will have a better grasp on your accounting and be better equipped to plan for the future. The materials and supplies needed for a company’s day-to-day operations – such as computers, electricity and rent – are examples of indirect costs. While these items contribute to the company as a whole, they are not assigned to the creation of any one service. It’s crucial to understand the difference between direct and indirect costs when pricing your products or services. Indirect costs include costs which are frequently referred to as overhead expenses and general and administrative expenses (for example, officers’ salaries, accounting department costs and personnel department costs).

Adjusting Indirect Cost Billings

But if you have significant exclusions in your budget, it is likely that the university’s official indirect costs rate will be less. The only way to know is to calculate the budget both ways and use the lesser amount. Please review the Definitions Frequently Asked Questions , and Appendix sections of this document for more information.

Indirect Cost

If this is not the case, an organization must provide a detailed forecast supporting the desired rate. Further, if at any time during the fiscal year an organization determines that its current provisional rate is no longer accurate and materially misstated it should advise M/OAA/CAS/OCC accordingly. If adequately supported, a revised provisional rate will be issued. An organization which does not yet have a NICRA but wishes to propose indirect cost should follow the steps below and explain in response to any award applications that no NICRA yet exists because this will be its first prime USG award. The indirect cost rates will then be reviewed for propriety by M/OAA/CAS/OCC and the Contracting/Awarding officer will be advised of approved rates after negotiation with the organization. If the organization subsequently wins the award a NICRA will then be issued. Conversely, if the organization is not successful in securing the award, no NICRA will be issued.

Cost Allocation Plans

The proposals are reviewed by the federal negotiators and rates are negotiated. Based on various information available (e.g., historical cost information and the level of funding being requested), CAAR negotiates the funding of indirect costs, typically as a rate. Occasionally when NSF plans to issue the organization only one award or a few awards or the total intended amount is not large, CAAR may decline to negotiate an ICR but, instead, recommend an award­specific amount.

Indirect Cost

Rent for a factory, for example, could be tied directly to a production facility. The Foundation may request additional information in order to determine if a proposed expense is an appropriate direct or Indirect Cost. The actual F&A rate for most federally-sponsored research is the standard rate referred to in the University’s overall F&A rate agreement.

Terms Similar To Indirect Costs

Indirect costs are costs incurred by an organization that are not readily identifiable with a particular project or program but are nevertheless necessary to the operation of the organization and the performance of its programs. The costs of operating and maintaining facilities, depreciation, and administrative salaries are examples of the types of costs that are usually treated as indirect costs. An indirect cost rate is simply a device for determining fairly and expeditiously the proportion of general (non-direct) expenses that each project will bear.

  • Your indirect cost rate proposal must be accompanied by a schedule of costs incurred for all projects, federal and non-federal, and the amount of the proposed allocation base must tie-in with the applicable direct cost base for all projects.
  • Schedule of all awards grouped by funding agency with majority federal funding listed on top.
  • Investopedia requires writers to use primary sources to support their work.
  • A non-federal entity that expends $750,000 or more during the non-federal entity’s fiscal year in Federal awards must have a single or program-specific audit conducted for that year in accordance with the provisions of this part.
  • As a business owner, you will have a clearer understanding of how to set pricing if you can classify your costs correctly.
  • Other acceptable documentation as noted below to claim indirect costs under an award.

A grantee that expends less than $750,000 during the entity’s fiscal year in federal awards is exempt from the single audit required by 2 CFR 200, Subpart F, Section 501. Requires organizations to submit audited financial statements and the certified indirect cost rate proposal within six months after the close of the fiscal year. Indirect costs are those costs which are not readily identifiable with a particular cost objective (e.g., direct organizational activity or project), but nevertheless are necessary for the general operation of an organization.

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Also, a grant modification may be allowed to transfer budgeted direct costs to the indirect cost category due to the increased indirect costs. This would be subject to the terms and conditions of the grant agreement, e.g., approval of grant officer, indirect cost ceilings, and administrative cost limitations. An indirect cost rate is simply a mechanism for determining fairly and conveniently within the boundaries of sound administrative principle, what proportions of Departmental/organization administration costs each programs should bear. An indirect cost rate represents the ratio between the total indirect costs and benefiting direct costs, after excluding and or reclassifying unallowable costs, and extraordinary or distorting expenditures. The indirect costs in the numerator of the equation should bear a reasonable relationship to the direct costs from the denominator.

Because of certain federal statutes or regulations, on limited occasions, a federal agency may be permitted to apply a lower rate or forego awarding indirect costs. A predetermined rate is based on estimated costs for a current or future specified period.

Financial Aid

Examples of cost objects are products, services, geographical regions, distribution channels, and customers. Instead, indirect costs are needed to operate the business as a whole.

The DOL’s Cost & Price Determination Division typically issues indirect cost rate agreements within 120 days of proposal receipt pending no unforeseen negotiation issues. A fixed dollar amount limits organizations to that «amount» of indirect costs specified in the approved budget. Compute the rate by dividing the total remaining indirect costs by the direct cost base selected for distribution of the indirect costs. For-profit businesses also generally treat “fringe benefits,” including paid time off and the use of a company car, as indirect costs.

Indirect costs must be calculated using the cost base defined in the organization’s NICRA. Entities without a valid and approved NICRA must use the appropriate base defined in section B.2, B.3, or B.4 of this policy. The cost base formula will result in the calculation of the modified total direct cost which will then be multiplied by the negotiated indirect cost rate.

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