Announcement: The federal government is transitioning from using the DUNS number to a “Unique Entity Identifier (UEI)”. The University of Southern California’s UEI has been automatically assigned in SAM.gov and added to the Department of Contracts and Grant’s “General Information” page as well as USC’s Institutional Profile in Cayuse 424. The transition date was originally slated for December 2020 but has been shifted to April 2022. Although the DUNS number is the current authoritative identifier, some systems have started (or will be adding shortly) the UEI field, such as Grants.gov and HRSA.
Although some systems are adding the UEI field, the DUNS number should be entered until further notice.
What is the Unique Entity Identifier (UEI)?
The Unique Entity Identifier, or the UEI, is the official name of the “new, non-proprietary identifier”. UEIs will be 12-digit alpha-numeric value with all letters capitalized (O and I excluded) which will replace the 9-digit DUNS number, according to the General Services Administration (GSA). The UEI will be assigned by the System for Award Management (SAM.gov).
How will the UEI be used by Federal Grant applicants?
Applicants can expect to use the UEI in the same way that the DUNS number is currently used. For example, Grants.gov will be changing system fields that are currently labeled “DUNS” to “UEI”. (Applicants will continue using their DUNS number in this field until further notice.). Form fields will be updated to include UEI fields at a later time.
When will the UEI be effective:
The General Services Administration recently extended the deadline for completing the government transition from the Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Number to the New Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) to April 2022. “By April of 2022, the federal government will stop using the DUNS number to uniquely identify entities registered in the System for Award Management (SAM).”
What’s the history of the identifier?
“The US Federal government has used services from Dun and Bradstreet to both identify (using the DUNS number) and validate/verify federal contractors since 1978,” explains a resource page GSA created to answer questions about the upcoming UEI rollout. “In 1998, entities were required to get a DUNS number by the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). In 2008, this requirement expanded to federal financial assistance, affecting over 630,000 public and private entities seeking federal contracts and/or grants.” The UEI is now set to take the place of the DUNS number.
Is anything changing besides the identifier?
While the official identifier for doing business with the U.S. Government is changing,
GSA explains that the “definition of entity uniqueness is not changing”. Uniqueness is
still “based on an entity being a separate legal entity and/or associated with a separate
physical address.” Currently, the uniqueness determination and entity validation
services are provided by Duns and Bradstreet. GSA notes that the UEI’s entity validation
services will be provided by Ernst & Young (EY).
For more information about the transition to UEI, please visit GSA website
Questions? If you have any questions, please contact your DCG Officer