Material Transfer Agreements

All Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs) are handled by the Contracts & Agreements Team of the Office of Sponsored Projects (OSP). An MTA covers all biological or chemical samples entering and leaving the University. The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) is a UBMTA signatory.

To find your Contracts & Agreements contact, please check the Award Constituency List broken down by the PI’s Unit Name. For general questions or for those outside the University wishing to enter into a MTA with UT Austin, please send an email to osp@austin.utexas.edu.

Requirements for every MTA

An incoming MTA is required when a UT Austin PI wants to receive material from an outside entity.

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An outgoing MTA is required when a UT Austin PI wants to send material to an entity outside of UT Austin.

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A reciprocal MTA is when both the UT Austin PI and an outside entity will be exchanging materials with each other under the same agreement.

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MTA FAQs

Contact OSP and notify us of the MTA. OSP has negotiated MTAs with several catalogue companies and repositories, and we may be able to substitute terms previously negotiated for the terms you were asked to sign. Please note: only OSP can sign on behalf of UT Austin.

you should complete an outgoing MTA SmartForm via the UT Research Management Suite Agreements Module. The Office of Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) will review the information you provide and assist you in determining whether your material is export controlled.

If the material is export controlled, you will need to work with OSP to submit a license application to the U.S. Department of Commerce (or other federal agency controlling the export process for your material). To complete the license application, OSP will need to know the following information:

  • Name of Recipient Scientist
  • Recipient Scientist Address and Phone/Fax/Email
  • Birth Date of Recipient Scientist
  • Country of Birth of Recipient Scientist
  • Place of Birth of Recipient Scientist
  • Recipient Scientist's Institution
  • Recipient Institution Address and Phone/Fax
  • Amount of Material to be transferred
  • Value of Material

Note that not all license applications are approved by the federal government. Additionally, approval of applications may take six (6) to eight (8) weeks and may be delayed due to questions about the recipient that arise after submission of the application.

If a license is provided by the federal government, OSP will then prepare a Material Transfer Agreement for the recipient scientist's institution. The agreement will incorporate the requirements imposed by the license; these requirements will be non-negotiable. If the recipient institution accepts the agreement and the license terms, you will be able to forward your material(s) to the recipient scientist after the MTA has been signed by both parties.

Notify Environmental Health and Safety that you want to transfer a select agent before contacting OSP. The transfer and shipment of a select agent requires prior authorization by the CDC/USDA. See training related to shipping select agents on the EHS website.

If you are already working with the Office of Industry Engagement (OIE) on an SRA with a corporation with no funding from governmental sources, OIE will handle your MTA. Please email industry@austin.utexas.edu.

To obtain access tothe UT Research Management Suite Agreements Module, visit https://agreements.research.utexas.edu/ to log in with your EID and password. You will be required to complete duo authentication to gain access. If you are unable to login, visit https://research.utexas.edu/eraproject/contact/ to request access.

Incoming MTAs

If an incoming MTA has associated transmittal fees, the fees must be approved in writing by the PI and paid for by their department. The Office of Sponsored Projects will not facilitate the payment of the MTA. If the fees are substantial, the Office of Sponsored Projects Assistant Director or Associate Director will also need to ensure the fees are reasonable before signing off on the MTA.

Outgoing MTAs

Since providing materials to a peer institution is generally considered a public service, materials are often provided at no cost to the recipient; however, provider organizations may charge a nominal “transmittal fee” in order to recoup costs related to the preparation and distribution of the materials.

If a UT Austin PI wants to charge transmittal fees on an outgoing MTA, the PI must confirm in writing the cost charged is equal or less than the cost of manufacturing, the PI will not make a profit, and the price aligns with industry standards. The Office of Sponsored Projects Assistant Director or Associate Director will also need to ensure the fees are reasonable before signing off on the MTA.

Any funds received by the University through collection of outgoing MTA transmittal fees shall be sent to the University’s Office of Accounting for deposit into an appropriate designated funds (19) account, which includes a standard administrative fee (3.25%) and prohibits entertainment expenses.

Here is the link to the FAQ for Researchers. If you need more assistance, please reach out to the Project Team.

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