Government Contracting Process the Federal Thesis

Excerpt from Thesis :

(Vancketta, 1999)

The 'Changes' clause enables the Government "to make unilateral changes to the contract during performance, so long as those changes fall within the contract's scope."

The Standard 'Changes' clause utilized in fixes price supply contracts allows the CO to make changes in writing to:

1) the drawings, designs, or specifications when the item is being specifically manufactured for the government;

2) the method of shipment or packing; or 3) the place of delivery. [Far 52.243-1] (Vancketta, 1999)

The 'constructive change' doctrine allows informal government actions or inactions not initially identified or admitted to be changes - but which require extra work - by the CO may nonetheless constitute changes." (Vancketta, 1999) Stated as typical categories of constructive changes that have been recognized by the administrative board of contract appeals and the courts are those as follows:

1) informal extra work directives;

2) defection government specifications or impossibility of performance;

3) incorrect contract interpretations taken by the Government causing extra work; and 4) the failure of the government to cooperate during performance. (Vancketta, 1999)

The standard default clause is similar to the 'termination for cause' in that the government is permitted to terminate a contract for default in the case where the contractor breaches the contract as follows:

1) fails to deliver the supplies or perform the services within the time specified in the contract;

2) make progress, thereby endangering performance of the contract; or 3) perform any other material provision in the contract. [FAR 52.249-8(a)(12)] (Vancketta, 1999)

FAR Part 31 states for the cost principles which relate "when and to what extent costs can be recovered under a government contract." Costs recovered by contractors must be:

1) allowable;

b) allocable; and reasonable. (Vancketta, 1999)

Reasonable costs are stated to be labeled so if "in its nature and amount, it does not exceed that which would be incurred by a prudent person in the conduct of competitive business." [FAR 31.201-3] an 'allocable' cost is defined as one which "is assignable or chargeable to one of more cost objectives on the basis of relative benefits received or other equitable relationship." (Vancketta, 1999) Requirements under non-commercial item government contracts required compliance with the following:

1) FAR's 'cost principles;

b) the Cost-Accounting Standards; and the 'Truth in Negotiations Act' (Vancketta, 1999)

The contractors are required to make sure that no false claims are made in their billing statement and conflicts of interest are strictly prohibited under 41 U.S.C. Section 423-, and 19 U.S.C. Section 208(a). Contractors are required to implement processes that are designed to:

1) prevent improper employment discussions with federal employees and 2) ensure that former federal personnel hired by the company do not illegally work on matter that create a conflict of interest. (Vancketta, 1999)

Kickbacks are strictly prohibited in either the giving or receiving of the same for the purpose of "improperly obtaining or rewarding favorable treatment in connection with a federal contract or subcontract" under 41 U.S.C. Sections 51-58; FAR 3.502. Kickbacks include "money, fees, commission, credits or any type of compensation." (Vancketta, 1999) Favorable treatment includes "obtaining unwarranted waivers of deadlines, and obtaining acceptance of non-conforming goods" (Vancketta, 1999)


This work has reviewed the government contracting process in which contractors bid upon government jobs that are published and announced and has related the various requirements and restrictions relating to government contracting. It is important that the contractor or company that is bidding on the government announced job be aware of the various rules, regulations and requirements of the government prior to bidding on government contracting jobs.


How to Register as a Federal Contractor (2008) online available at

Small Business Guide to Federal Contracting

Government Contracting

Federal Government Contract Overview

Government Contracting 101

Guide to Government Contracting - Kentucky

Limits of Competition: Accountability in Government Contracting 1 Jun 2003 Yale Law Journal.

Benford, Ceclia M. (2006) Contract Incentives. Unclassified. Online available at (,+cost+plus+fixed+fee+(CPFF),+cost+no+fee+(CFE)+cost+plus+incentive+fee&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

Vancketta, Carl. L. (1999) Federal Government Contract Overview. Findlaw Information Governance Resource Center. Online available at

Government Contracting Process

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