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Public Financial Disclosure Report (OGE-278) Forms

Individuals in certain pay plans or positions are required by the Ethics in Government Act (EIGA), as amended, to file a Public Financial Disclosure Report (OGE-278) within 30 days of entering the covered position, annually thereafter, and within 30 days of terminating from a covered position.  There are some exceptions, and there are occasions when one report fulfills both requirements.  Individuals required to file this report include those in SES; ST or SL paid above a specified salary level; Commissioned Officers at or above the O-7 rank; the six NIH level Deputy Directors; all IC Directors; Deputy Directors; Clinical Directors; Scientific Directors; and the Extramural Program Officials who report to their IC Director.  Your IC Ethics Officials will provide instructions for completing the report to the appropriate individuals when reports are required.

Note that the form number was changed from SF-278 to OGE-278 in January 2011.

All Filers: NIH employees should use the NIH Enterprise Ethics System (NEES) to enter their financial data for their Public Financial Disclosure Report (OGE-278). You may create your annual (incumbent) report after January 1st in the year you will file and begin working on it, before the notice is sent. Information and instructions for using NEES are available on the NEES Community SharePoint site at

New Employees: All individuals new to a public filer position must be cleared prior to entering on duty into the position. This usually requires submission of a draft New Entrant report fairly quickly. See the NIH Pre-Clearance policy and procedures. Candidates may need to submit a paper report. Links to the paper copy of the form are below.

Resources for Employees Required to File the OGE-278

Frequently Asked Questions about filing a Public Financial Disclosure Report (OGE-278) (OGE website)

Training Module: How to File an OGE-278 Report (2010). (OGE Website). This web-based training module assumes you are completing the OGE-278 in paper copy, but the information about how to report your assets and other items is very helpful.

Training Module: New Entrant 278 Guide (OGE Website). This module provides assistance to nominees and new entrant filers for filling out their new entrant report.

Public Financial Disclosure Report (OGE-278) (12/2011)
NIH policy indicates that financial disclosure reports should be submitted electronically via NEES, as noted above. However, it may be helpful for filers to have a copy of the form and detailed instructions. You may wish to print or view the form or instructions, to see what the final report looks like or to guide you through data entry in NEES, as noted above. The paper form may need to be used for pre-employment draft reports. The following options are provided to assist the filer in completing the requirement to file.
OGE-278, instructions and automated pdf form. This edition of the OGE-278 is not the accessible version for use with a screen reader. The accessible version is available via the Office of Government Ethics web site (see below). This automated version contains the instructions (12 pages) and the automated form, which permits filers to enter data and save the form for later edits. When you open this file, it opens on the first page of the form, which is page 13 of the entire file. Use Version 9.1 of the free Adobe Reader. If you use the incorrect version, you will not be able to update the information on your form after you close and reopen it. Although the form will work in Version 8, OGE recommends that you install Version 9.1.Contact your IC's IT support or submit a Service Request.
Also available is the form only (6 pages, pdf), or the instructions only (12 pages, pdf).

OGE has an accessible version of the Public Financial Disclosure Report. for use with a screen reader (OGE web site).
Public Financial Disclosure Periodic Transaction Report (OGE-278-T) (6/2012)
The STOCK Act, enacted on April 4, 2012, mandates additional requirements for the OGE-278 Public Financial Disclosure Report filers, i.e., filers must report certain transactions and filers must submit a written recusal for negotiating future employment (see the Forms page). The report form OGE-278-T is available in fillable Excel format (each page of instructions and form are separate worksheets in the file) or non-fillable pdf (instructions and blank form). Additional information about the STOCK Act is available on the STOCK Act page.

Resources for Ethics Officials

See Resources for Managing a Financial Disclosure System, on the Financial Disclosure Page.

The STOCK Act, enacted on April 4, 2012, mandates additional requirements for ethics officials and for OGE-278 Public Financial Disclosure Report filers, e.g., reporting certain transactions, and written recusal for negotiating a new position.. The Office of Government Ethics (OGE) has issued multiple legal advisories to assist filers and ethics officials. See the list on the STOCK ACT web page for the explanatory memos and new forms, where applicable.

Public Financial Disclosure Reviewer's Guide (OGE, 2004) (OGE web site, pdf, 375 pages)

HHS DAEO Instruction 07-2, May 23, 2007: Public Financial Disclosure System Procedures for the Department of Health and Human Services (pdf, 52 pages, 2.40MB, HHS web site, HHS Access only)

HHS Late Fee Assessment Procedure for OGE-278 Filers is found in Attachment G (the 44th page) of DAEO Instruction 07-02. The link goes to the first page of the Instruction.

Delegation of Authority

Each Deputy Ethics Counselor has the authority to receive and review Public Financial Disclosure Reports (OGE-278) and the OGE-278 Periodic Transaction Reports (OGE-278-T) for employees within their respective areas of responsibility, and to certify the reports.  The authority to certify OGE-278 reports may not be redelegated, including New Entrant, Annual, Termination, and Combination reports. 

However, certification of the OGE-278-T may be redelegated to individuals who are knowledgeable and at a high enough level within the organization to be consistent with good management of this authority and to maintain program integrity, e.g., an experienced Ethics Specialist or Ethics Coordinator. All redelegations must be in writing, and a copy sent to the NIH Ethics Office.

Updated: 8/21/12