Prior Approval for Change in Scope

To change the scope or objectives for federally supported projects, grantees must request prior approval from SAMHSA through the eRA system.

IMPORTANT: SAMHSA has transitioned to the National Institutes of Health (NIH)’s electronic Research Administration (eRA) grants system. All post-award processes will be managed exclusively through the eRA system and this effort requires the approved Program Director/Project Director (PD) to be registered in eRA Commons.

Additional information on the eRA Commons registration process for the PD is available at Instructions for SAMHSA Recipients Commons ID (PDF | 76 KB)

Reasons for Change in Scope

Recipients must request prior approval for a CIS when there is a significant change in the scope or objectives from those identified and approved in the funded application. SAMHSA will not approve any requests for additional funding as part of a CIS. A change in scope must be supported within the level of grant funds currently awarded.

Prior approval is required for:

  • Changes to the objectives, aims, or purposes, such as changes to the service area or elimination of a care delivery site.
  • Transfer of the performance of substantive programmatic work to a third party through a subaward, contract, or any other means.
  •  Budget revisions that cause a project to change substantially from that which was approved.

Consult your Government Program Officer and Grants Management Specialist with questions regarding a potential change in scope. SAMHSA will not approve any requests for additional funding.

Based on the nature, extent, and timing of the request, the SAMHSA GMO may approve, deny, or request additional material to further document and evaluate your request. Only responses provided by the GMO are considered valid. If SAMHSA approves the request, an amended Notice of Award will be issued. Verbal authorization is not approval and is not binding on SAMHSA. Recipients that proceed on the basis of actions by unauthorized officials do so at their own risk, and SAMHSA is not bound by such responses.

What to Include in Your Request

The prior approval request must contain the following: 

  1. Cover Letter/Narrative
    • Explain and support the need for a change in scope, including a detailed explanation of any potential impact on the approved project budget, and on accomplishing the aims and objectives of the funded project.
    • Discuss and document any unique circumstances that will impact the ability to meet the expectations of the funded project.
  2. A revised SF-424A.
  3. Line-item budget and budget narrative. To ensure a timely review, the budget should follow the formatting requirements outlined in the Funding Opportunity Announcement.
  4. The HHS Checklist.

In addition to the information and supporting documentation described above, remember to follow the steps for submitting a prior approval request.

Last Updated: 12/21/2017