What Are CAGE Codes?

When working with companies that do business with the US government, one may notice that they always have a CAGE code. A CAGE code, or Commercial and Government Entity code, is a special identifier that is assigned to businesses by the Department of Defense’s Defense Logistics Agency. These codes serve as a way to identify which companies are allowed to do business and accept contracts from the federal government.

Obtaining a CAGE code is a free and fairly simple process, one that only requires registration. With registering or updating a businesses’ information on the System for Award Management (SAM) website, an entity can receive or maintain a CAGE code upon approval. For a long time, these codes were permanently attached to a business that had registered. As of August 26, 2016, however, the DLA has begun to set expiration dates after acquirement. This initiative is to ensure the quality of submitted data with SAM for the benefit of all. Businesses that have acquired their CAGE code prior to 2016 should note that they are exempt from expiration dates, as the measure only affects new applicants.

Thankfully, businesses do not have to jump through hoops to maintain the validity of their CAGE code. All one is required to do is keep their registration with SAM active and up to date. The SAM allows for businesses to bid on government contracts, receive grants, and provides for other functions so that keeping registered information up to date is useful for any business working with the government.

The DLA ensures that the process of maintaining CAGE code validity is kept as simple as possible to benefit all parties. As expiration dates are set to be every five years, keeping information on the SAM active would not prove a problem to most businesses. With updated SAM registration, there are no extra steps to be taken and a CAGE code will update automatically.

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