Government Contracts

How to Walk in the Valley of the Shadow of Death: Strategies for Mid-Tier Federal Contractors

August 10, 2018
By Isaias Alba IV
It is a well-known fear of many small business federal contractors that, if you are too successful, it may be the death knell for the business. Every small business set aside is restricted to only those companies whose revenues or employees fall below the applicable size standard, some of which are quite small (only a few million dollars a year in some cases). As a result, small businesses that continue to win work soon find themselves classified as a large business and ineligible to bid on new set asides. These companies are then forced to compete with companies two, five, ten, or even a hundred times their size.

Current Trends in Federal Procurement

August 7, 2018
By Peter B. Ford and Michelle E. Litteken
For government contractors, staying ahead of the curve is critical for success. Knowing about a new law, policy, or program can provide you with a competitive advantage. There are three current trends in federal procurement that are significantly affecting the means agencies use to purchase goods and services as well as the ways contractors compete for those opportunities: category management, the 809 Panel, and other transaction authority ("OTA"). Staying abreast of these trends and determining how you can effectively maneuver in the new marketplace should be a priority for all contractors.

GAO Considers Impact of Department of Defense Enhanced Debriefing Rights on Protest Timeliness Requirements

July 31, 2018
By Jacqueline K. Unger
In a recent GAO decision, State Women Corporation, B-416510 (July 12, 2018), GAO denied a protest as untimely after considering the impact of the Department of Defense's ("DoD") new enhanced post-award debriefing procedures ("Enhanced Debriefing Rights") on GAO's protest timeliness requirements.

Acetris Health Case Demonstrates the Value of Strategy in Pre-Award Bid Protests

July 26, 2018
By Julia Di Vito
We recently wrote about the decision in Acetris Health, LLC v. United States, Case No. 18-433C (July 16, 2018), in which the U.S. Court of Federal Claims ("Court") issued a decision about a challenge to the terms of a solicitation issued by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs ("VA"). Although that decision has interesting implications for procurements involving the Trade Agreements Act, the decision also illustrates how pre-award protests can be utilized to maximize the competitive process. Additionally, the decision also raises interesting questions related to considerations implicated in the filing of a pre-award protest of a solicitation's terms.

Court of Federal Claims Issues Wide-Reaching Decision on Trade Agreements Act

July 25, 2018
By Julia Di Vito
On July 16, 2018, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims ("Court") issued a decision in the bid protest of Acetris Health, LLC v. United States, Case No. 18-433C, that will likely have far reaching implications on other procurements involving the Trade Agreements Act ("TAA"). In that case, Acetris Health, LLC ("Acetris") challenged the terms of a solicitation issued by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs ("VA") to purchase Entecavir Tablets, a medicine designed to treat hepatitis B. In the solicitation for this procurement, VA stated that it was seeking "U.S.-made" end products or "designated country end products," as defined in Federal Acquisition Regulation ("FAR") Part 25, but also required offerors to certify whether or not the end product they offered was TAA compliant. The Court found this requirement improper.
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