Many women owned businesses are also eligible for the 8(a) Certification. Minority woman owned small businesses can qualify using our 8(a) Qualification tool. Caucasian Women should review our narrative guidelines as part of their application process.
Clarification 1: People with Heritage from the Iberian Peninsula (Spain/Portugal) are considered Hispanic for proving social disadvantage.
Clarification 2: People from the Middle East and North Africa can successfully apply, however they need a solid narrative.
Clarification 3: Native Alaskans, and Hawaiians often overlook their social disadvantage status.
Clarification 4: The Social Disadvantaged Individual or group of individuals needs to own 51% or more of the firm.
Clarification 1: If your business is a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC or S Corp, the amount of income that rolls onto the owner's taxes does not count towards the $6,500,000 income threshold.
Clarification 2: Distributions that an owner takes from the firm that aren't used for taxes are added to their income and counts toward the $6,500,000 three year average.
Clarification 3: If an individual has money in excess of the $400,000 they can paydown the mortgage on their primary residence, which, in some cases, this can get them under the $400,000 threshold.
Clarification 4: The SBA will pull a credit report on the applicant, with the intention of looking for assets that have not been disclosed to the SBA.
Clarification 1: Only the 51% owner of the firm needs to work full-time for the business.
Clarification 2: If a firm has a long-standing client representing 100% of the firm’s business, and the firm loses this client, and obtains another client which now has 100% of the firm’s work, there is often a point in time where the firm becomes compliant with the 8(a) 70% rule and can apply for 8(a).
Clarification 3: The SBA waives the 70% rule for firms applying for 8(a) with a two-year waiver.
Clarification 1: Not more than 25% of the firm’s revenue should come from a past employer.
Clarification 2: The firm should not share employees, or office space with a past employer, or firm they have other dealings or entanglements.
Clarification 3: The owner of the firm should be the highest paid person at the firm, unless there is a strong and reasonable justification for this not being the case.
Women who are not members of one of the presumed socially disadvantaged groups but would like to still pursue and 8(a) application may still do so provided they can prove they are socially disadvantaged and can document this in a narrative to the SBA. First, we would like to make the clarification between individual bias and universal bias and how this affects the SBA’s application process.
In order to obtain 8(a) the bias the person suffers must be on an individual nature, specific to the applicant. The Caucasian female applicant is required to build a narrative that documents a lifetime of suffering from gender bias. The bar the SBA sets for an 8(a) application is high and the applicant is required to “show clear and convincing evidence.” Therefore, the SBA’s expectation is that the narrative will show a life-history of chronic long standing social disadvantage. This is done on an individual case basis and not as part of a case made for women in general. This evidence must build the case that the person would have been more successful had they not suffered from this bias.
This should not be misconstrued as a universal bias against all women owned businesses, meaning the evidence must apply to the individual female applicant not statistical or generalized information. This type of bias was the SBA’s rational for creating the WOSB and EDWOSB program.
We have been successfully putting forth these applications for over fifteen years. We recommend that Caucasian female review the following list and then call us to discuss and individual plan of action.
1. Stemmed from the female applicant’s gender and not common to other small businesses.
2. Was rooted in the treatment the applicant experienced in American society and not in other countries.
3. Was chronic and substantial and not fleeting and insignificant.
4. Was personally experienced.
5. Negatively affected the applicant’s entry into and/or advancement in the business world.
Applicants attempting to document their history of gender bias can use the table below as a starting point:
|Item #||Recommended # of Documented Occurrences||Type of Occurrence||Sub-Type Occurrence – All occurrences must deal with gender bias, and not simply a denial occurring in a competitive marketplace.|
Lack of advancement
Unfair bid denial
Lack of serious consideration in proposals
Forced lower rates than other male owned firms.
Inability to increase firm capabilities due to glass ceiling
|4||1-2||Credit or Loan Approval||
Credit denial or lack of credit from vendors (based upon gender)
Credit denial from a financial institution (based upon gender)
|5||0-1||Federal Contracts||Denial from obtaining federal contracts based upon gender.|
|6||0-1||Membership in professional organizations||Not granted participation, leadership position, or similar access to group functions as male members.|
|7||0-1||EEOC – successful claim||Any successful EEOC (Equal Opportunity Commission) claim is documents evidence of past gender discrimination|
|Total||7-17||Note: Evidence needs to be provided to accompany these stories.|