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NSF: Implementation of the New SAM UEI to Replace DUNS

Published February 1, 2022

The National Science Foundation (NSF) recently released the “Dear Colleague” information below.

WashU’s registration is managed centrally by the Office of Sponsored Research Services. WashU’s registration is current with an expiration date of November 9, 2022.

WashU’s UEI is L6NFUM28LQM5.

If your NSF grant application will have outgoing subawards, the Subaward Entities must also have UEIs. Anyone can log in to with their credentials to view an entity’s UEI. If they do not have a UEI, please notify them that they will need to go to to obtain a UEI.

If you have any questions, please contact the Office of Sponsored Research Services.

Dear Colleague:

Effective February 28, 2022, the National Science Foundation (NSF) will begin using the new System for Award Management (SAM) issued Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) in and FastLane. This update is being made in accordance with the government-wide transition by April 4, 2022, away from the use of the Dun & Bradstreet issued Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and toward the new SAM UEI as the primary means of entity identification for Federal awards.

The new SAM UEI process eliminates the requirement for organizations to obtain an identifier from a third-party website and streamlines entity registration, identification, validation, and ongoing management in one place, For information about NSF’s SAM registration requirements for organizations with proposals for consideration and active awards, refer to the Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) Chapter I.G.2.

Here’s what to know about the SAM UEI implementation at NSF.

Prior to February 28th UEI Implementation

  • A DUNS number is required for registering in until April 4, 2022.
    • Organizations with expired SAM registrations must renew and revalidate the registration in with a valid DUNS number.
    • Organizations with deactivated DUNS numbers will not be available in and would require re-registering with with an active DUNS number and then also re-registering with NSF in
  • New organizations must continue to obtain a DUNS number and register in before registering with NSF in (A DUNS number must be obtained until April 4, 2022, at which time the DUNS number identifier will be replaced by the SAM UEI.)
  • Organizations currently registered in, including organizations with inactive registrations, have already been assigned a 12-character alpha-numeric SAM UEI.
  • In accordance with the PAPPG Chapter I.G.2., any subrecipients named in a proposal are still required to obtain a DUNS number, however, do not need to be registered in SAM.

UEI Updates Effective on or after February 28th

  • UEIs for organizations already registered with NSF will be pre-populated in NSF systems and will replace the associated DUNS numbers. NSF-registered organizations will not need to manually replace DUNS with their SAM UEI in NSF systems.
  • A UEI is required for registering at NSF going forward.
    • New organizations will enter their SAM UEI to register with NSF in beginning on February 28.
    • Although a DUNS number will be required to register in and to receive a UEI until April 4, 2022, DUNS numbers will no longer be used at NSF.
  • A DUNS number is required for registering in until April 4, 2022.
    • Between the February 28th NSF UEI implementation date and April 4, 2022, organizations must still obtain a DUNS number to register in and to receive a UEI.
  • Any subrecipients named in a proposal are also required to obtain a SAM UEI and register in Subrecipients named in the proposal, however, do not need to be registered in SAM. Refer to the PAPPG Chapter I.G.2.
  • All SAM Legal Business Name and SAM Physical Address updates will be made in going forward, and NSF will receive daily data extract updates directly from
    • The SAM Physical Address will be the address of record for organizations registered with NSF.
    • Organizational address changes will no longer be accepted in FastLane.
  • The SAM Legal Business Name will display along with the NSF-managed Organization Name on and FastLane proposal Cover Sheets, NSF Award Notices, Project Reports, and NSF Award Search results. Proposal validation checks will verify the organization’s SAM UEI rather than DUNS number. The proposing organization must have an active SAM registration to submit a proposal to NSF.

UEI Updates Effective on or after April 4th

  • A UEI is required for registering at NSF going forward, but organizations will no longer obtain a DUNS number as of April 4, 2022.
  • A DUNS number is not required for registering in or to obtain a SAM UEI as of April 4, 2022.
  • DUNS numbers cannot be used or displayed except for historical reference (e.g., the Cover Sheet for a proposal submitted prior to NSF’s SAM UEI implementation on February 28, 2022, will still display the organization’s DUNS number).

SAM UEI Help Resources

Registering a New Organization with NSF
Guidance on registering a new organization with NSF is available in the Account Management Guide on the About Account Management page. SAM UEI updates will be available in the posted resources after the SAM UEI implementation at NSF on February 28, 2022.