- Government contracting involves the procurement of contractors for goods, products, and services for government use.
- The solicitation process is lengthy and is regulated by multiple laws and regulations.
- Spending by the government is beneficial for the global economy.
- In 2018, more than $550 billion was spent on contracts by the government.
- Individuals who provide products and services to the government sometimes find it challenging to contend and comply with the evolving procurement and contracting regulations especially because they differ between the private and commercial spheres.
- Consider hiring an attorney skilled in advising clients on government contracting issues from initial solicitation to contract negotiation.
About Our Government Contracting Defense Law Firm
If you need advice regarding government procurement and contracting or are worried about compliance issues, do not hesitate to contact our government contracting team today.
Government contracting is accompanied by a complex set of laws and regulations. Government authorities routinely investigate and audit contractors.
This can be especially challenging in situations where the laws differ from the private/commercial industry. Such a broad yet complex environment demands legal counsel by attorneys with a practical and thorough understanding of these laws and regulations.
We are here to resolve such uncertainty in a streamlined and efficient manner when advising you through the stages of government procurement and contracting. Our attorneys frequently advise companies on government contracting issues.
Put Oberheiden, P.C. on your side today to resolve these complexities and put you at ease.
What is Government Contracting?
Government contracting is a highly regulated process governed by a complex set of laws and regulations.
Appropriated funds are used by the government to procure goods, supplies, products, and services for the federal government to use or rent.
There is a comprehensive collection of statutory and regulatory provisions that delineate how an agency can solicit a contract; what it must do throughout the solicitation process; how it can begin negotiating with the contractor and ultimately award the contract; and the process the government must follow to pay the contractor.
Understanding the Importance of Government Contracting
Around 40% of the government’s discretionary spending is allocated and given to the government to engage in contracting for goods and services. More than $550 billion was spent on these contracts by the government in 2018 alone.
The U.S. government is the largest procurer of goods and services in the world. Department of Defense contracts comprise the largest share of federal government acquisitions.
Therefore, all companies—big and small—who engage in government contracting are a part of this necessary process of business transactions for the global economy.
Our team represents contractors across a diverse group of industries including aviation, energy, environment, technology, real estate, construction, healthcare and medical centers, research institutions, pharmaceutical companies, and information technology.
The General Government Contracting Process
The process of government contracting can vary depending on the transaction and parties involved, but the process typically follows a general pattern:
The government will initially have a detailed project design developed and identify the requirements of the project. There will generally be market research at these initial steps along with business forecasts developed.
The government will next begin the solicitation process for the good or service. The government will release information such as project specifications, contractor qualifications, and evaluation criteria that those contractors will be evaluated against.
The contractors then submit their proposals and the government evaluates them. The evaluation stage includes an emphasis on the contractor’s qualification and other specifics such as their rates.
During the negotiation stage, the government will sometimes ask questions to contractors, clarify concerns, or conduct some other kind of soft interview.
The government then selects the best contractor and awards them the contract for the project at hand. There may be more negotiations at this last stage but typically ends when the government and the contractor sign the contract with detailed terms and conditions for the pending project.
After the best contractor is awarded the government contractor, there are instances where the other contractors will be dissatisfied and therefore wish to appeal the award before the appropriate government agency or protest the result.
Laws Regulating Government Contracting
There are several laws regulating government contracting:
- Armed Services Procurement Act of 1947: This Act governs the acquisition of property (excluding land), construction, and services of the defense agencies in the U.S. government.
- Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949: This Act governs civilian agency acquisitions and simplifies the procurement, utilization, and disposal of government property. It established the General Services Administration (“GSA”), which is the agency responsible for supporting federal agencies and supplying products, communication, and transportation services to the federal government, its offices, and employees.
- Office of Federal Procurement Policy Act of 1974: This Act was enacted to give direction for the procurement procedures of the government and to promote efficiency in the acquisition process.
- Anti-Deficiency Act of 1982: This Act prohibits federal employees from incurring obligations or expenditures in excess of the amount delineated in the appropriations funds unless authorized by law.
- Competition in Contracting Act of 1984: This Act encourages competition for government contracting with the goal that increased competition will improve savings in the long-term because it will lead to competitive pricing in a free market.
- Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act of 1994: This Act serves to improve the functioning and streamline the federal government’s acquisition laws.
A popular regulation is the Federal Acquisition Regulation (“FAR”). FAR governs the acquisition process that federal government executive agencies follow when they acquire goods and services with appropriated funds through government contracting.
The laws are complex, and compliance may seem dauting. Get an experienced attorney on your side today to take care of these uncertainties for you.
Examples of the Government Contracting Matters We Handle
Our team regularly advises on all aspects of government contracting:
- the acquisition process
- bidding and bid protests
- solicitation and procurement
- disputes between business owners, contractors and subcontractors, suppliers, and other parties
- conflicts of interest (personal and business-related)
- risk control and analysis
- contingency contracting
- judicial and administrative disputes in all 50 states
- compliance issues including internal control compliance
- intellectual property rights
- other contract claims
- data and trade secrets protection
- mergers and acquisitions regarding government contracting
- other miscellaneous issues such as audits, grants, cooperative agreements, etc.
We have ample experience and a successful track record in defending claims before courts against unsubstantiated allegations.
Request a Free Initial Consultation at Oberheiden P.C.
If you need advice regarding government contracting, contact our office today.
Our team advises on complex government contracts cases and routinely coordinates with government agencies to deliver you the most thorough service to simplify your transactions from initial procurement and acquisition to contracting and disputes.
At Oberheiden, P.C., we are highly specialized in the preparation of government contracting advice and litigation. Our success rate makes us one of the leading defense law firms in the nation.
We assure you that no firm will work harder than Oberheiden, P.C. to give the best counsel to you and your company.
Call or contact our office online for a free consultation.