Forum Replies Created
Hi! Thanks for reaching out. Here are the answers from our Accounting & Compliance team:
Q1 – Yes, company B is considered eligible, and the tax liability to company C from the grant would come from the budgeted amount in the award allocated to them. Just make sure company A is listed in the budget justification.
Q2 – Based on the information provided, Company C is also eligible for the SBIR award as long as the budget clearly lays out the employees and contractors on the grant. The preferable pathos Path 1 with the owner of company B listed as the PI and over 51% employed by Company B
Q3 – The granting organizations strongly suggest an S-corp formation (or LLC filing as an S-corp) to meet the requirements of all employees on the grants being paid through W-2 (including owner/PI)
Q4 – You would need to read through the FAR (FAR 31) to read what is allowed versus unallowed.
Q5 – Yes, you can use fees to cover the taxes. The Fee income is used for any costs including federal income tax.
Q6 – Yes, it is required for an SBIR that the PI be employed 51% by the company receiving the grant.
Q7 – Yes, you can have capital equipment as part of an SBIR submission. These reimbursements are handled differently under grant versus tax accounting.
Q8 – Yes, we have dealt with these types of relationships.at 8:38 pm in reply to: Can I use the ‘Fee’ for company’s IP licensing from Univeristy? #6955
For NIH SBIR/STTR program, the fee is collected as direct costs are incurred. As you reimburse yourself for direct costs, you also figure out your indirect based on the direct costs, and then the amount of the fee based on the total direct and indirect. No documentation is needed aside from bookkeeping to support the direct costs spent. Yes, you can ask for the full amount of 7%. Let us know if you have other questions!at 5:55 pm in reply to: Can I use the ‘Fee’ for company’s IP licensing from Univeristy? #6836
You are very welcome! Let us know if you have any other questions.at 5:25 pm in reply to: Can I use the ‘Fee’ for company’s IP licensing from Univeristy? #6834
Hi! Yes, you can use your 7% small business fee for IP-related expenses.
Per NSF guidelines, “Up to 7% of the total indirect and direct project costs may be requested as a fee. The fee is intended to be consistent with normal profit margins provided to profit-making firms for R&D work. The fee applies solely to the small business receiving the award and not to any other participant in the project. The fee is not a direct or indirect “cost” item and may be used by the small business concern for any purpose.”
Hi! Per NSF guidelines: An organization may submit only one invited SBIR/STTR Phase I proposal submission windw. An organization must wait for a determination from NSF (e.g., Award, Declination, or Return without Review) on any NSF SBIR/STTR Phase I pending proposal before submitting a new proposal in the next window. This eligibility constraint will be strictly enforced. In the event that an organization exceeds this limit, the first proposal received will be accepted, and the remainder will be Returned without Review. Declined proposals require a new invited Pitch while proposals Returned without Review may be submitted using the same invited Pitch (within the one-year eligibility from date of the original proposal invitation).
Thus, if the first proposal is rejected, you can submit a new pitch. If invited, a new/revised proposal can be submitted. If awarded, with a small company having several employees, even changing to a new topic area, it will be really difficult to receive another award. Hope this helps!
Hi! Please check the program solicitation regarding the anticipated award date. It is usually listed in the announcement. Based on information from NSF’s website:
NSF strives to be able to tell applicants whether their proposals have been declined or recommended for funding within six months. Large or particularly complex proposals or proposals from new awardees may require additional review and processing time. The time interval begins on the deadline or target date, or receipt date, whichever is later. The interval ends when the Division Director acts upon the Program Officer’s recommendation.
Hope this helps!
Hi MikeinMN, the processing speed varies among applicants and different topic areas. In your case, please double-check whether you need to update the budget under Fastlane (check the email instructions again). You can check in with the PD once a month to see anything else they will need from you. Thanks! -Luat 6:28 pm in reply to: Indirects in proportion to Grant Total or Grant %Indirect #4063
Good question! Indirect costs are not “allocated”; they should be treated as overhead and put into a pool to cover the company’s general and administrative expenses. Rent can be either a direct or indirect expense. If treated as a direct cost, you would need to determine the portion of the total space needed for each project and split the costs. If treated as an indirect cost (which is more common), you can just pay from the indirect pool. A professional accounting and compliance (A/C) team can help you set up a financial system and provide ongoing bookkeeping, accounting, and financial reporting. To know more about the A/C services EGC provides, please visit https://www.evagarland.com/services/accounting/ or schedule a consultation with us at the bottom of that page. As always, please feel free to reach out if you have additional questions. -Lu
Hi Shoba, it is not recommended for two small businesses to jointly apply for an SBIR, as there may be issues later on with IP ownership. If a collaborator is necessary for a project, please consider a research institution as the subaward. Let us know if you have additional questions. -Lu
Hi Shoba, Good question! Generally, applicants have to submit to either an SBIR or STTR solicitation for an NIH Fast Track. There have been rarely targeted solicitations that allow STTR in Phase I and SBIR in Phase II. Here is an example: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-CA-21-001.html, but it is expired. However, applicants can switch mechanisms between two Phases. For example, apply for SBIR in Phase I and apply for STTR for Phase II, vice versa. However, there will be a funding gap between the two Phases. If you have additional questions, please feel free to reach out. -Lu
Hi Kentucky1987, it’s great news that your proposal was reviewed highly. Your NSF Program Director (PD) will reach out and provide very detailed instructions on what information/materials he/she needs from you. Different companies may receive different requests. Usually, the requests can be 1) response to action items from review panel; 2) response to additional action items from PD; 3) SBIR/STTR funding agreement (a fillable form); 4) SBIR/STTR administrative questions (a fillable form); 5) budget modification/clarification; 6) Project Abstract for public release (standard format will be provided). Upon receiving the requests, please acknowledge the receipt of the email and provide the requested information within the suggested timeline. Let us know if you have additional questions! -Lu
NSF just announced that the next submission due date is March 4th, 2021:
I completely agree with Nitesh. Just to add that for the SBIR/STTR Phase I proposals, other than the research strategy, NSF requires the applicants to spend a significant amount of effort on the commercial opportunity, including the impact, market, business model, commercialization risk, commercialization approach, and resources. You will be able to see the detailed requirements in the solicitation: https://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2020/nsf20527/nsf20527.htm#. Feel free to reach out if you have additional questions.
For STTR, the PI can both from the small business and the collaborating non-profit research institution at the time of award and for the duration of the project period as long as the time effort requirement is met: the small business must perform at least 40 percent of the work and the research institution must perform at least 30 percent.
Hope this helps! Feel free to reach out again if you have additional questions.
Usually, you will hear back from NSF within three weeks.