CGC Grading Process

CGC uses a proven, multi-step process to certify comic books, magazines, concert posters and related collectibles. The CGC grading process is designed to ensure consistency, accuracy and integrity while safeguarding your valuable collectibles. Here, you can explore the key stages of the CGC grading process.

Step 1/7

Receiving

When a submission is received, it is opened by trained CGC staff under security cameras and immediately checked against the submission paperwork. The submission is then entered into CGC's proprietary tracking system with a unique submission number.

Step 2/7

Verification

Each collectible gets a more detailed review to confirm that its description matches the information provided by the submitter. A unique ID and barcode is assigned to track the collectible throughout the CGC grading process. At this stage, the collectible is separated from the submission paperwork so that CGC’s graders don’t know the submitter’s identity. This helps to ensure complete impartiality.

Step 3/7

Authentication

Each collectible is stored in CGC’s vault until it is ready to be reviewed for authenticity. If the collectible is determined to be genuine, it will be graded according to the industry-standard CGC Grading Scale. Note: A collectible may be rejected for grading if it is too fragile, too large, explicit or if the wrong interior is married to a cover. In these cases, the CGC grading fee is refunded less a small processing charge.

Step 4/7

Grading

Grading is a team effort, with multiple CGC professionals examining every collectible to ensure accuracy and consistency. CGC's graders enter a grade for each collectible into CGC's computer system. A consensus is then reached on the final grade of the collectible.

Step 5/7

Encapsulation

The collectible and a label bearing its description and grade are inserted into CGC’s crystal-clear archival holder. The holder design uses precise pressure to sonically seal the collectible in place for enhanced protection. Numerous security features in both the holder and label guard against counterfeiting and tampering.

Step 6/7

Quality Control

A Quality Control specialist carefully inspects the collectible, CGC label and CGC holder. All of the certification details are reviewed for accuracy and the holder is checked for any defects or contaminants.

Step 7/7

Packaging and Shipping

Finally, collectibles are individually counted and checked against the original submission paperwork. Collectibles are then securely packaged in a sturdy cardboard box with void-filling materials. The CGC-certified collectibles are now ready to be sent back to the submitter.

A CGC representative wearing gloves scans a comic book submission during the CGC receiving process.
1
Receiving
A CGC representative reviews a comic book submission to verify that its description matches information provided by the submitter.
2
Verification
A CGC representative reviews a comic book for authenticity.
3
Authentication
A CGC grader examines a comic book with a magnifying glass to determine its grade.
4
Grading
A CGC representative inserts a comic book and its label into CGC’s archival holder during the CGC encapsulation process.
5
Encapsulation
A CGC Quality Control specialist inspects a comic book, its holder and its label for accuracy and defects.
6
Quality Control
A CGC representative packages certified comic books in a cardboard box with void-filling materials.
7
Packaging & Shipping
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