FinancesFunders including UKRI and the Wellcome Trust have made Research Organisations responsible for the activities of any Third Party employed using grant funding. The following guidance has been prepared for PIs, departmental and project administrators as well as  Research Services teams to ensure the sound management of Overseas research projects and the appropriate retention of audit evidence:

Managing the Finances FAQs

1) Paying Overseas Partners

We recommend that you have agreed the method by which overseas or non-standard partners will receive funding from the project at the start, research services teams have guidance on the procedures that are acceptable, finance have also established new guidance for the adding of external payees.

Please see the Accounts Payable guidance on Partner Payments.

2) Expenses for College Staff

Any expenditure incurred by members of College staff must comply with funder terms and conditions and with the College Expenses Policy. Where funder terms and College policy are contradictory, funder terms take precedence.

See also the Travel, Accommodation and Safety section of this guidance for advice on overseas accommodation and subsistence.

3) Managing and Reporting Third Party Expenditure

Research Council terms and conditions state that award holding institutions are responsible for activities carried out by third parties, and where possible research teams should encourage partners to submit evidence of any expenditure for audit purposes.

However, in some cases, particularly in the developing world, this evidence may not exist or cannot be generated. In such cases the research team is advised to:

  • Check what record of financial transaction is possible before entering into agreements with local suppliers and where possible obtain receipts, invoices or similar.

For further advice on the checks required see the Guidance on Third Party Providers on the Safety website, and Accounts Payable Partner Payments information.

4) Tax and VAT

When purchasing and transporting equipment overseas, or undertaking projects in hazardous countries, specialist legal and tax advice may be required and costs may need to be covered by the grant.

In the first instance, the PI or departmental administrator should consult the College’s Finance pages for advice on Tax and VAT related to overseas purchase and contact the relevant team for specialist advice.