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Government Contracts

Most Expensive Contractor Wins Bid Protest; Three Cheaper Competitors were Vague on Subcontractor Use.

Despite being the most expensive of four bidders, a contractor bidding to install fiber optic cable in Jordan wins its bid protest.  This case is a lesson on the use of subcontractors in a small business set-aside contract.  A company must be specific, on the fact of its proposal, as to who in the c...

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Government Contractors Beware: Federal Court Declares Teaming Agreement Unenforceable

Two government contractors entered into a Teaming Agreement for the purpose of working together towards securing a prime contract from the Federal government.  The companies, Information Experts, Inc. (“IE”) and Cyberlock Consulting, Inc. (“Cyberlock”), successfully put forward a persuasive bid, and...

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Likening the Federal Government’s Argument to “Alice in Wonderland,” the Court Sustains a Bid Protest Where the Agency Put an Incorrect Deadline on Its Website

Who says that government contract law is not fun?  While it is not common for a federal judge to cite Lewis Carroll's, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland in a bid protest decision, it is not common for the United States to manipulate time and logic like the Mad Hatter. Usually, we use this...

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Small Business Set-Asides are Themselves “Competitive.”

If the law requires competitive bidding for a government contract, and an agency designates a contract as one for small businesses only, does the removal of large businesses from the contracting pool itself render the solicitation non-competitive?  The Court of Federal Claims says "no." A bid pro...

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Federal Appeals Court Denies Trademark for the Word “!@#$%^&*()”

It is not often that a federal appellate court will write one of George Carlin's "Seven Dirty Words" over a dozen times in a published legal opinion -- often in all capital letters.  However, in a US Court of Appeals case that is destined to be the inspiration for legal careers of 12-year-old boys e...

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A Contract Modification Doesn’t Get Rebid Unless it is a Cardinal Change

American Apparel, Inc., along with Bluewater Defense, Inc. provides coats and other all-weather clothing to the United States Defense Logistics Agency under a government contract.  The Agency wanted to purchase additional apparel not specifically listed in the contract via a Request for Additional I...

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Contractor Wins Bid Protest by Arguing that “Class Waiver” of Customary Commercial Practices was Irrationally Applied

Two large food distributors interested in competing for a $9.3 million contract to supply food to military and civilian customers in Texas and New Mexico win their pre-award bid protest against the Army’s Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support.  They successfully argued that the DLA’s waiver of the ...

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Agency’s Use of Independent Government Cost Estimate (IGCE) was Rational

In this post-award bid protest case, a contractor who offered the government a very low price on a government contract failed to win the award.  It complained that the Agency improperly used an inadequate Independent Government Cost Estimate (“ICGE”) to conclude that the contractor was not offering ...

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Bid Protest Successful Where Agency Failed to Document “Best-Value Tradeoff Analysis”

A government contractor wins its post-award protest where the agency failed to adequately document its “best value” analysis.  This is the latest of a string of recent successful bid protests wherein the government loses on the basis of poor documentation.  The c...

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Who is a “Non-Responsible” Bidder? Who is a “Non-Responsive” Bidder?

A disappointed government contractor lost its bid protest, and the Court of Federal Claims explained the law on responsibility and responsiveness in offers to requests for proposals (“RFP”). The case is Nilson Van & Storage, Inc. v. United States, 2011 U.S. Claims LEXIS 1710. Nilson Van &...

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Appellate Court Slams Down Army Corps of Engineers for Following a GAO Recommendation

Often in the government contract law world, following a recommendation by the United States Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) in a winning bid protest is wise and bulletproof. However, in Turner Construction Co. v. United States, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 14370 (2011), the United State...

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Federal Court Slams Down Army for Following Informal Advice of GAO Lawyer on Corrective Actions in a Bid Protest

When the Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) recommends that a government agency take “corrective action” in procurement by making changes to its selection criteria or process, the Court of Federal Claims will routinely adjudicate challenges to the proposed corrective action.  But, what if the ...

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Bid Protester Wins Protest Where the Agency Improperly Awards Contract to Company with an “Organizational Conflict of Interest”

The Department of Defense Unites States Special Operations Command (“USSOCOM”) awarded their Information Technology Service Management (“ITSM”) contract to Jacobs Technology, Inc. instead of IBM.  IBM complained that Jacobs had an “organizational conflict of interest” since it had been the incumbent...

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