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How the Government Issues a Sole Source Award to a Non-8(a) Company

The Government may issue a Sole Source Award when there is only one company or organization that can satisfy the agency’s needs. DoD, NASA, and the Coast Guard have more leeway and may issue a Sole Source Award if there are a limited number of potential sources. However, in order to issue these Sole Source Awards, these are the requirements in summary that must be met:

  • It may not resemble either a pending nor upcoming solicitation
  • It is anticipated that additional competition would not save the Government money.
  • If the bid was not a Sole Source, there would be unacceptable delays.

One of the following must be met:

  • There is only one responsible source to obtain the services/supplies.
  • Unusual or compelling urgency; This cannot be due to the Government’s lack of planning.
  • Industrial Mobilization; engineering, developmental, or research capability, or expert services;
  • International Agreement;
  • Required by statute (e.g. utilities);
  • National Security; or
  • Public Interest

There must be an explanation as to which of the above reasons is pertinent.

There must be a description of efforts that the Government has made to solicit as many sources as possible.

Depending on the value of the award, different approvals are required.

With a few exceptions, the justification should be made publicly available 14 days after contract award and must remain available for a minimum of 30 days on

Confused about Sole Source Awards? Contact Streamline Government Contracts to get the full details.