Who Must Return Funds?
Recipients of Provider Relief Fund (PRF) and American Rescue Plan (ARP) Rural payments, under several circumstances, are required to return funds to the Heath Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
- Providers who rejected the Terms and Conditions in the PRF Application and Attestation Portal, but never returned funds
- Providers who failed to submit a required report must return all funds that were not reported on during a specific reporting period or the subsequent request to report late due to extenuating circumstances
- Providers deemed required to repay funds as a result of audit findings
- Providers deemed ineligible or noncompliant by indictment or other information not revealed through audit
Providers that fail to repay funds upon notice from HRSA may be subject to initiation of debt collection and repayment.
Timeframe to Return
Funds must be returned within:
- 15 calendar days of rejecting a PRF or ARP Rural payment in the Application and Attestation Portal; or
- 30 calendar days after the end of the applicable Reporting Time Period or applicable grace period, as explained in the Frequently Asked Questions.
HRSA will not require non-compliant providers to return funds until after the opportunity to Request to Report Late Due to Extenuating Circumstances for a Reporting Period. Providers who submit a request will be notified by HRSA if their request is approved or denied. Providers whose request is approved will receive a notification to proceed with completing the report. Providers whose request is denied will need to return their funds to become compliant with their PRF reporting requirement.
Failure to Return Funds
Providers who fail to return funds to HRSA will be subject to some or all of the following enforcement actions:
- Ineligibility for future PRF and ARP Rural payments
- Initiation of debt collection and recovery
Review the Repayment and Debt Collection webpage for more information.
How to Return PRF and ARP Rural Payments
Returning partial or total PRF payments is a two-part process:
- Complete an online form via the Return Unused PRF Funds Portal
- Transfer the funds via Pay.gov or via check. Refer to the instructions for returning unused funds.
Correspondence relating to the return of PRF and ARP Rural funds must include the 15-digit ACH tracing numbers for every payment received by the provider. These ACH tracing numbers are required for the ACH return option, and they may also be helpful to include for tracking purposes if PRF or ARP Rural funds are returned by check.
Refund checks for the full amount should be made payable to HRSA and mailed via United States Postal Service (USPS) to:
United Health Group
Attn: Provider Relief Fund
PO Box 31376
Salt Lake City, UT 84131‐0376
Please note that delivery services FedEx and UPS cannot be used with this PO-Box.
To ensure proper crediting, all checks and correspondence relating to the return of PRF funds must include:
- Provider’s Name;
- Tax Identification Number (TIN) that received the payment (Filing TIN); and
- CMS Certification Number (CCN) (as applicable).
TINs and CCNs should be clearly written on the check and/or included within a corresponding letter.
Partial Return of Funds
After filing a report, providers that have PRF or ARP Rural payments that cannot be expended on allowable expenses or lost revenues attributable to coronavirus, must return any unused funds from the corresponding Payment Received Period to the federal government, as explained in the Post-Payment Notice of Reporting Requirements (PDF - 176 KB) (October 27, 2022).
|Period||Payment Received Period||Period of Availability|
|Period 1||April 10, 2020 to June 30, 2020||January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021|
|Period 2||July 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020||January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2021|
|Period 3||January 1, 2021 to June 30, 2021||January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2022|
|Period 4||July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021||January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2022|
|Period 5||January 1, 2022 to June 30, 2022||January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2023|
|Period 6||July 1, 2022, to December 31, 2022||January 1, 2020, to December 31, 2023|
|Period 7||January 1, 2023, to June 30, 2023||January 1, 2020, to June 30, 2024|
Returning Interest Earned
If PRF payments were held in an interest-bearing account, the provider must return the accrued interest associated with the amount being returned to HRSA. If the funds were not held in an interest-bearing account, there is no obligation for the provider to return any additional amount other than the PRF payment being returned to HRSA.
Steps for Returning Accrued Interest
To return accrued interest, visit Pay.gov. On the webpage, locate “Find an agency,” and select “Health and Human Services (HHS) Program Support Center HQ.” Verify that the description is “PSC HQ Payment” and form number is “HHSHQ,” then click “Continue.” You will then need to complete the following steps:
Step 1. Preview the form, then click “Continue.”
Step 2. Indicate whether you are completing on behalf of an individual or business and enter the following information:
- Business Name Field: Legal name of organization that received the payment
- Invoice or Ticket Number Field: “HHS-COVID-Interest”
- Contract/Agreement Number Field: Tax Identification Number (TIN) of organization or provider that received the payment
- Point of contact: Business contact information
- Payment Amount: (The payment amount must match the interest earned on the payment received.)
Step 3. Verify the interest return payment amount and select to pay by ACH or debit/credit card, then select “Continue.”
Step 4. Enter the required information to complete the payment, then select “Review and Submit.”
Step 5. Ensure that all information is correct and select “Submit.”
If you have filed a bankruptcy petition or are involved in a bankruptcy proceeding, federal financial obligations will be resolved in accordance with the applicable bankruptcy process, the Bankruptcy Code, and applicable non-bankruptcy federal law. Accordingly, we request that you immediately notify HRSA about your bankruptcy petition or involvement in a bankruptcy proceeding so that we may take the appropriate steps. When notifying HRSA about a bankruptcy, please include the name that the bankruptcy is filed under, the docket number, and the district where the bankruptcy is filed. You may submit this information to PRFbankruptcy@hrsa.gov.