Federal Programs for Small Business


Cohen Mohr specializes in advising clients about federal government programs and opportunities for small businesses. Programs exist for individuals thinking of starting a new business as well as those running small or disadvantaged businesses. Our clients also include large businesses ready to collaborate, develop joint ventures and subcontract with small businesses on federal government procurements.

We provide expertise in the following Small Business Administration Programs:

  • 8(a) Business Development Program (8(a) Program)
  • Historically Underutilized Business Zone Program (HUBZone Program)
  • Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Concern Program (SDVO SBC Program)
  • All Small Mentor/Protégé Program
  • Women-Owned Small Business Program (WOSB Program)

8(a) Program


Cohen Mohr helps companies and individuals determine whether they are eligible, how to apply, and what to do if the application is denied.

For participants admitted to the 8(a) Program, we provide advice about SBA’s continued eligibility requirements and answer questions about various SBA approvals that must be obtained by 8(a) participants. We offer guidance in joint venture and subcontracting opportunities, and how to structure the arrangements. We also help companies understand the eligibility requirements and how to apply for the 8(a) and the new All Small Mentor-Protégé Programs, which is available to 8(a) participants and their mentors, including large businesses.

HubZone Program


The HUBZone Program provides federal contracting opportunities for qualified small businesses located in economically distressed urban and rural communities designated by SBA. Unlike the 8(a) Program, eligibility for the HUBZone Program is not based upon the economic or social qualifications of the business owners. Rather, the HUBZone Program is primarily based upon where the applicant business is physically located and where its employees live.

If your company is located in a HUBZone or if you are interested in finding out whether that is the case, Cohen Mohr’s attorneys can help you. We also can advise you on the HUBZone’s eligibility requirements and guide you through the application and certification process.

Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Concern Program


Eligible participants should not overlook this valuable contracting Program. Unlike the 8(a), SDB, and HUBZone Programs, individuals qualified for the SDVO SBC Program do not have to apply to SBA for certification as such. Self-certification is acceptable. Cohen Mohr can help you meet the Program’s eligibility requirements and determine whether you can self-certify as an SDVO SBC.

We also represent many SDVO SBCs regarding the Center for Veterans Enterprise (CVE) verification by the Department of Veterans Affairs, which is mandatory for any company pursuing VA set-aside contracts.

Congress has indicated that the SDVO SBC Program has equal status to the 8(a) Business Development and HUBZone Programs. Agencies are permitted to restrict competitions to SDVO small businesses. Contracting officers may award sole source or set-aside contracts to qualified SDVO small businesses.

Size Regulations


Cohen Mohr’s attorneys work regularly with clients regarding SBA’s size regulations and North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Code designations, which are used to determine size by all federal agencies.

Our clients do business under a wide array of NAICS Codes. They include high technology goods and information technology service providers, such as computer, peripheral, imaging and telecommunication hardware manufacturers; application, enterprise, and utility software developers and publishers; technology service providers; systems integrators; and dealers and distributors. Cohen Mohr also represents various other businesses, including, but not limited to, construction contractors and subcontractors; consultants; janitorial and maintenance providers; furniture manufacturers; leasing companies; training companies; audiovisual companies; engineering firms; and office equipment manufacturers and dealers.

We frequently provide guidance about affiliation issues, including, but not limited to, those arising from subcontracts and joint venture arrangements. Our attorneys are also knowledgeable about the Limitations on Subcontracting rule (50 Percent Rule) and the Nonmanufacturer Rule. We help companies bring and defend against size protests and appeals, as well as NAICS appeals.