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Can a Sole Proprietorship Register in SAM, or Is It Limited to Larger Businesses?


A sole proprietorship can indeed register in the System for Award Management (SAM) and participate in federal procurement opportunities. SAM registration is not limited to larger businesses; it is open to various types of entities, including sole proprietorships. However, there are a few important points to consider:
  1. Legal Recognition: To register in SAM, a sole proprietorship should be legally recognized as a business entity. In most cases, this involves obtaining the necessary permits or licenses required by state, local, or federal authorities to operate as a sole proprietor.
  2. Tax Identification Number (TIN): A sole proprietorship must have a valid Tax Identification Number (TIN) or Employer Identification Number (EIN) issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). This number is used for tax reporting and identification purposes.
  3. D-U-N-S® Number: While not mandatory for all federal contracts, some agencies may require businesses, including sole proprietorships, to have a Dun & Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (D-U-N-S®) Number. It’s advisable to check the specific requirements of the procurement opportunity you’re interested in. — Now UEI #
  4. SAM Registration Process: Sole proprietors can follow the SAM registration process like any other business entity. They will need to provide accurate information about their business, including contact details, TIN or EIN, and other relevant information during the registration process.
  5. Small Business Set-Asides: Some federal contracts are set aside specifically for small businesses, which includes sole proprietorships. These set-aside opportunities are intended to promote competition among small businesses.
  6. Compliance and Eligibility: Sole proprietors, like all businesses, must ensure they comply with federal regulations, have no debarment or suspension issues, and meet the specific eligibility criteria outlined in each procurement opportunity.

It’s important for sole proprietors considering SAM registration to carefully review the requirements of the contracts they wish to pursue. Additionally, maintaining accurate and up-to-date information in the SAM profile is crucial to ensure eligibility and compliance with federal regulations.

While sole proprietors can register in SAM and participate in federal procurement, they should be aware that the federal procurement landscape can be competitive. It’s advisable to seek guidance from Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs), or similar resources to navigate the federal procurement process effectively and maximize opportunities for success.


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