In the ASCBA Case 61691 Doubleshot, Inc. July 19, 2022 Decision, the Board supported what we believe is the correct reading of the records retention requirement under the FAR related to Cost-Reimbursable contracts. FAR 52.215-2, Audit and Records, requires contractors to make available until 3 years after final payment or any shorter period specified in Subpart 4.7. FAR 4.705-2(b) limits the required retention period to 2 years from the end of fiscal year for pay related records (e.g., timesheet or cards). So provided you submit your Incurred Cost Submission (required by FAR 52.216-7, Allowable Cost and Payment Clause) on time, you only need to maintain any of the records listed in FAR Subpart 4.7 for the time period set forth in that section of the FAR.
Recent Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA) cases have rejected contractor requests for equitable adjustments (REAs) related to the impact of COVID-19 on contract performance under firm fixed price (FFP) contracts. In both cases, discussed below, the ASBCA turned to the Connor Bros. Federal Circuit decision (550 F.3d 1368 (2008)). In that decision the Federal Circuit found the act of the Sovereign Government does not result in an act of the Government as a contracting party. Therefore, under the “Changes” clause (FAR 52.243-1, Changes-Fixed-Price) that was in Connor’s contract this did not give rise to an equitable adjustment in the contract price. The basis of the Connor Bros. decision and the two recent cases is the “Sovereign Acts Doctrine.”
Government Contractor Purchases below the Micro-Purchase Threshold Require NO Documentation
This is a common misconception within the GOVCON community. While the expectations are clearly less documentation and effort are required than that of a larger dollar value purchase, there is not a magic threshold at which NO documentation of the fair and reasonable price is allowed.
Topics: Compliant Accounting Infrastructure, Incurred Cost Proposal Submission (ICP/ICE), Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, DFARS Business Systems, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, Contractor Purchasing System Review (CPSR), Government Regulations, Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
The Government runs away to fight another day and another day.
What is this Groundhog Day?
L3 Technologies, Inc. (L3) takes the Government to task for “challenging both indirect and direct costs paid to L3 on several government contracts for certain years.” During the long-drawn-out process of the litigation, “the government apparently thought better of its claims and withdrew them in toto and represented it would make no further claims on the contract years in question.” L3 opposed, the dismissal seeking either summary judgment in its favor or that the Board “keep the appeals live so that it can obtain a victory that, it believes, would preclude its suffering similar government claims in other contract years.” No such luck, the Board granted the government’s motion and dismissed the appeals.
All we can hope is that someday the fox will get the gingerbread man (aka the Government) and this Groundhog Day nightmare will stop.
 Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA) Case Nos. 61811, 61813, and 61814
 Fancy Latin word for completely.
Topics: Incurred Cost Proposal Submission (ICP/ICE), Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, Government Regulations, Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
Lockheed Martin raised a great question to the ASBCA as to “whether the Fly America Act, 49 U.S.C. § 40118 (FAA) and Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.247-63 only apply to direct personnel performing direct work on covered contracts, or also applies to indirect personnel or indirect travel.” The Board declined to hear the case as there was no “live dispute” at hand.
 Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals Case No. 62377
Topics: Compliant Accounting Infrastructure, Incurred Cost Proposal Submission (ICP/ICE), Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, Government Regulations, Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
At the end of each of the DCAA audit programs for contractor business systems, DCAA discusses what it refers to as “Less Severe Significant Deficiencies.” These are clearly deficiencies which do not meet the DFARS definition of a “Significant deficiency.” As a result, the withhold requirement provided for in DFARS 252.242-7005 cannot be applied.
Topics: Compliant Accounting Infrastructure, Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, DFARS Business Systems, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, Contractor Purchasing System Review (CPSR), Government Regulations, Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
DCAA issued some guidance on PPP forgiveness treatment in the form of frequently asked questions (FAQs) to its auditors. The FAQs were not front and center on DCAA’s website but search on “PPP” did find them at: COVID FAQ for PWS 07142021 (dcaa.mil).
Topics: Compliant Accounting Infrastructure, Incurred Cost Proposal Submission (ICP/ICE), Small Business Compliance, Contracts Administration, Defense Contractors, Cost-Type Contracts, DCAA Audit Support, Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy (DPAP), Government Regulations, COVID-19, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loans, Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
Wage Determination Clauses Can Bite You
What is the spookiest and scariest story for a government contractor? How about a story where the government imposes an expense on a contractor, but doesn’t allow for consideration of this expense in the contract value? So, in layman’s terms, losing money (profit) on government contracts. In a recent ASBCA decision, this is exactly what happened.
On June 24, 2021, the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA) opinioned that Intellicheck, Inc., a subcontractor, did not have privity of contract or even an implied-in-fact contract with the Government to allow for the recovery of costs incurred by Intellicheck, Inc. to maintain and store Government property after the completion of a Task Order for the Navy. A tale as old as time, the Government lets years go by before taking action to dispose of its property being held by a subcontractor. Then finds a legal out for not paying the costs the Government caused to be incurred.
In 2017 Congress directed through the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that changes be made to the treatment of independent research and development (IR&D) costs and required the Defense Contract Audit Agency to provide as part of its annual report to Congress both independent research and development and bid and proposal (B&P) costs expended by DoD contractors. Congress intended this change to apply to indirect costs incurred on or after October 1, 2017. The Defense Acquisition Regulation (DAR) Council must have read over that part.