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What is a CAGE Code, and Do I Need One For SAM Registration?


A CAGE code stands for Commercial and Government Entity code. It is a unique identifier assigned to entities that do business with the U.S. federal government, including contractors, suppliers, and service providers. The CAGE code is used to track and identify these entities in various government systems and databases.

Here are key points to understand about CAGE codes and their relevance to SAM (System for Award Management) registration:

  1. Assignment of CAGE Codes:CAGE codes are assigned by the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) in the United States. When an entity registers with the DLA, it is assigned a CAGE code if it does not already have one. Entities that are already registered with the DLA but do not have a CAGE code can request one.
  2. Use in Federal Contracting:CAGE codes are commonly used in federal contracting. They help federal agencies identify and track contractors, suppliers, and other entities involved in government procurement activities.
  3. Historical Requirement for SAM:In the past, having a CAGE code was a requirement for SAM registration, especially for entities seeking to do business with the Department of Defense (DoD). However, as of April 2022, SAM transitioned to using the Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) as the primary identifier for entities doing business with the federal government. While CAGE codes are still relevant and may be used in some contexts, they are no longer the central identifier for SAM registrations.
  4. UEI in SAM Registration:During SAM registration, entities are assigned a UEI by SAM itself. You do not need to apply for or provide a CAGE code separately during the SAM registration process. SAM generates and assigns the UEI as part of your registration.
  5. CAGE Codes for Specific Contracts:Some federal contracts, particularly those related to defense and DoD, may still require the use of CAGE codes in addition to the UEI. Entities seeking such contracts may need to obtain and provide their CAGE codes as requested.

In summary, while CAGE codes were historically important for federal contracting, SAM has transitioned to using the UEI as the primary identifier for entities in the registration process. Therefore, you do not need to apply for or provide a CAGE code for SAM registration. SAM will generate and assign the UEI for your entity during the registration or renewal process. However, CAGE codes may still be relevant in specific federal contracting contexts, so it’s important to be aware of their usage requirements for particular contracts or agencies.


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