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STEP 1: Obtain a DUNS Number for your Organization

Has my organization identified its Data Universal Number System (DUNS)?
Ask the grant administrator, chief financial officer, or authorizing official of your organization to identify your DUNS number.

If your organization does not know its DUNS number or needs to register for one, visit Dun & Bradstreet website:

Register or Search for a DUNS Number: Click to View Exit Disclaimer

Purpose of this Step:
The federal government has adopted the use of DUNS numbers to track how federal grant money is allocated. DUNS numbers identify your organization.

How long should it take?
If requested over the phone, DUNS is provided immediately. Webform requests take 1 to 2 business days.

What is a DUNS Number and why do I need to obtain one?
The Data Universal Number System (DUNS) number is a unique nine-character number that identifies your organization. It is a tool of the federal government to track how federal money is distributed. Most large organizations, libraries, colleges and research universities already have DUNS numbers. Ask your grant administrator or chief financial officer to provide your organization's DUNS number.

List of Information you will need to obtain a DUNS number (if your organization does not already have one):

  • Name of organization
  • Organization address
  • Name of the CEO/organization owner
  • Legal structure of the organization (corporation, partnership, proprietorship)
  • Year the organization started
  • Primary type of business
  • Total number of employees (full and part time)

If your organization does not have a DUNS number, use the Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) online registration to receive one free of charge.

NOTE: Obtaining a DUNS number places your organization on D&B's marketing list that is sold to other companies. You can request not to be added to this list during your application.

Additional Information for Foreign Applicants

If your organization is located outside the United States, you can request and register for a DUNS number also online via web registration. You are not required to obtain a federal Tax Identification Number (TIN) also known as an Employer Identification Number (EIN) in order to register with Dun & Bradstreet. Simply leave the TIN/EIN information blank when registering. However, you must determine whether you will need a TIN/EIN in order to meet Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax reporting requirements.

In general, anyone doing business with the federal government will need to obtain a TIN/EIN. Also, many federal agencies use the tax identification number, assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to identify your organization.

Depending on the intended usage of the grant you are applying for, you may need to file a U.S. tax return and will need to apply for a TIN/EIN. For activities to be performed outside the United States, for scholarships, fellowship grants, targeted grants, and achievement awards received by non-resident aliens for activities performed, or to be performed, outside the United States are not U.S. source income, and therefore a TIN/EIN is not necessary.

For more information, visit the Internal Revenue Service Click to View Exit Disclaimer and search for their most recent guidance for Aliens and International Taxpayers. You may also, contact the Agency Point of Contact listed for the grant opportunity to get more information on a specific grant opportunity.

PROCEED TO STEP 2: Register with SAM