In this uber competitive labor market, it is more crucial than ever to be creative with compensation and benefits. Compensation programs and retention strategies have expanded beyond base compensation and bonus to include all methods in which employees are rewarded and incentivized. As a Federal Government Contractor, it is especially important to understand the FAR requirements which may impact compensation decisions and to document all processes and procedures related to your compensation program.
Apparently, nothing the Board found was to the liking of the judges at the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Case Number 21-2304, Secretary of Defense v. Raytheon Company, Raytheon Missile Systems, decided January 3, 2023. This was the appeal from the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals in Nos. 59435, 59436, 59437, 59438, 60056, 60057, 60058, 60059, 60060, and 60061.
Effective for tax years after December 31, 2021, companies that have research and development expenditures will be required to amortize their R&D costs instead of deducting them in the current year. So, what is the impact – an increased tax bill beginning in 2022.
You pride yourself on working well and getting along with everyone, at least professionally. However, there is an auditor that seems to get under your skin. What do you do? Well, although there may not be a “magic bullet” to all make it better. I propose the following to get you through the situation at hand:
In the Lockheed Martin ASCBA Case 62209 Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company April 13, 2022 Decision, the Board found that when there is a Congressionally established statute of limitation the “theory of laches” does not apply.
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.
Yes, they are! Did your company make it through its year-end and closing of last year’s books? If so, hooray! But is it really over for those that have Government cost-type contract billings? Not really. OK, as the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 42.704, Billing rates, allows interim payments through contract performance with the intent of making the contracting officer or contract auditor approved provisional billings rates as close as possible to the expected final indirect rates. This allows you to bill your costs throughout the year of your cost-type Government contract billings. Now that you know what the year-end indirect rates really are, there is one more thing to do: adjust the provisional indirect billing rates to actual rates in a Public Voucher (Standard Form 1034). Those year-end indirect rates should be net of any unallowable costs in FAR Part 31, Contract Cost Principles and Procedures. Sounds easy. It really should not be that difficult.
The recent memo from the Defense Pricing Center (DPC) has created quite the stir around the current economic uncertainties in the government contractor community tied to inflation. The unfortunate reality is that for many years, economically speaking, the risk of inflation has been a steady 2-3% and so both contractors and the acquisition professionals on the other side have not had to realistically consider this factor in pricing/negotiating contracts. History has shown us that the threat is all too real and can cause significant hurdles for contractors to weather an inflationary period like we saw in the 80s, early nineties and as recently as 2009. The question of is it transitory or are we headed toward a recession is best left to our friend the magic 8-ball, but I do think there are a few things that all contractors should be aware of during this time.
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.”