SBA Provides Answers on Vets Certification Program Roll-Out in Q&A Session

On December 6, 2022, the SBA held a virtual Q&A session to discuss the roll-out of the Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) and Veteran Owned Small Business (VOSB) certification program. They will be assuming responsibility as of January 2023 and the SBA will begin accepting applications for certification on January 9, 2023. Through the Q&A session, the SBA provided some tips for contractors, an explanation of the processes that are controlling the SBA’s SDVOSB and VOSB certification program, and even gave attendees a preview of the software that will be used. Of course, SmallGovCon was there to get all the details so that we can break them down for you.

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SBA Issues Final Rule on SDVOSB Certification

SBA has issued its final rule for its takeover of the Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB) and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) Certification program. The rule will have an effective date of January 1, 2023. We discussed the proposed rule in our post here. Below are a few key takeaways from the final version of the rule.

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A Helpful Guide: The VA’s Memorandum on the New Certification System

As many of you likely already know, back in late 2020, Congress made two changes to the SDVOSB program when it passed the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act. First, all SDVOSBs will be required to certify with the government starting on January 1, 2023. Second, the responsibility for conducting SDVOSB certification will transfer from the VA’s Center for Verification and Evaluation (CVE) to the SBA. Seems simply enough, but, obviously, this raises some questions: What if a SDVOSB is already certified with CVE? How much time do self-certified SDVOSBs have to act? Will the CVE still be accepting applications in the meantime? Helpfully, the VA has produced some guidance, and in this post we’re going to expand on it.

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Federal Court Confirms Strict SDVOSB Unconditional Ownership Requirements

As we’ve discussed, the SBA will soon take the reins over from VA to run the certification process for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (VOSBs) and Service-Disabled, Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSBs). Self-certification for SDVOSBs will go away on December 31, 2023, so be sure to get your SDVOSB ownership and control documents up to snuff in order to stay compliant with the SDVOSB rules. One of those rules concerns unconditional ownership by the veteran. A recent federal court case sheds some additional light on that topic, as explored in this post.

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Small Business Committee Raises Concerns to SBA About Certification Speed, Category Management

Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives Small Business Committee held a hearing to discuss how the SBA will meet Small Business Contracting goals, and specifically how the SBA can meet its goals related to socioeconomic programs. The committee challenged the Office of Government Contracting & Business Development to show how they will help grow participation in SBA’s small business development programs, and small business participation in federal contracting as a whole. The Small Business Committee raised questions related to inflation, increasing socio-economic program participation, and SBA technology updates.

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Keep Registrations in SAM Current to Avoid Loss of SDVOSB Verification

The decision in Bravo Federal Consulting, LLC, SBA No. CVE-213 (Dec. 1, 2021) is both an important reminder of the importance of keeping all database information up to date and a cautionary tale of the unfortunate consequences that can happen when you don’t. In that decision, SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) denied an appeal by Bravo Federal Consulting, LLC (Bravo). Bravo submitted a request to change its name, setting off a chain of events that ended in Bravo losing its verified status as a service-disabled veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB). 

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SBA Updates Veteran Surviving Spouse Rule

A proposed rule from SBA will make changes to the SDVOSB rules. SBA has modified its rules allowing surviving spouses to continue owning Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses after the veteran owner has passed away. This should provide some help to spouses of disabled veterans. SBA has updated a few dollar thresholds as well.

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