UG-Visa Costs

VISA COSTS FOR SHORT-TERM TRAVEL

Updated: 09/01/2015

Uniform Guidance, Section 200.463(d) recruiting, describes when visa costs are allowable as a direct cost on federal awards:  Short-term, travel visa costs (as opposed to longer-term, immigration visas) are generally allowable expenses that may be proposed as a direct cost.  Since short-term visas are issued for a specific period and purpose, they can be clearly identified as directly connected to work performed on a Federal award.

For these costs to be directly charged to a Federal award, they must:
(1) be critical and necessary for the conduct of the project;
(2) be allowable under the applicable cost principles

Basic visa application and required fees, such as anti-fraud fees, are allowable direct costs provided they meet the definition above.

Premium processing fees, dependent form fees are NOT allowable as direct charges to a federal award.

Uniform Guidance Section: 200.463

FAQs
1. I have a postdoc or research associate that is coming from outside the U.S. to work on my federal award, can I charge the cost of his visa to the grant?  According to the new Uniform Guidance [§ 200.463 (d) “Recruiting Costs”] you may charge visa application fees to your grant provided the postdoc/researcher is critical and necessary for the conduct of the project.

2. I have a postdoc or research associate that needs to have his/her visa renewed, can I charge the cost of his visa to the grant?  No.  Visa costs are only allowable as part of recruitment not retention.

3. I have a postdoc who is here on a J-1 visa and is transitioning to a H-1B visa. May I charge the costs of the new H-1B visa to a federal award?  No.  Only those visa costs associated with the initial recruitment may be directly charged to a federal award.