Contract Claims and Requests for Equitable Adjustments in Washington, D.C.
It is common for disputes to arise between the government and the contractor during the performance of a government contract. Our attorneys at Ward & Berry PLLC have helped hundreds of clients obtain successful resolution of these disputes whether through negotiation or aggressive litigation of the dispute at the Civilian Board of Contract Appeals, the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals, the Court of Federal Claims, or the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
These disputes can arise from any number of sources including differing site conditions, changes mandated by the government, and differences regarding contract interpretation.
Requests for equitable adjustment, which may morph into a certified claim, are more common than you may think and have become a routine aspect of working with the government. Our attorneys in Washington, D.C. can help your business navigate the legal technicalities to seek a proper resolution against the federal entity.
Often the need for a request for equitable adjustment can be simply the result of poor communication from the government, or lack-there-of. Involving an experienced attorney can help break the logjam and accelerate your case’s resolution.
Our team at Ward & Berry PLLC is available to assist in preparing a request for equitable adjustment (REA) or certified claim.
Why Hire Ward & Berry PLLC
Filing an REA or certified claim is a technically complicated process. Contacting an attorney to guide you through this process is important. One of the most critical decisions in pursuing a claim is determining the proper forum. Having litigated dozens of REAs and claims over the years, we have the experience you need to prepare your REA or claim in order to give it the best chance of success. Our team simplifies the process and reduces the burden on your shoulders. It is important to involve learned counsel any time you see a pending dispute on the horizon. We can help negotiate with the government and obtain an effective resolution before the matter evolves into full blown litigation. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with our attorneys, so we can begin evaluating the dynamics of your unique case.
Why You Need a Washington, D.C. Contract Claims and Requests for Equitable Adjustments Attorney
Government contractors have learned to expect the unexpected when dealing with government contracts. Many changes and new disclosures can suddenly arise during the process. Contractors can be requested to comply with new requirements without a contract modification. In these situations, a contractor can file an REA to seek additional compensation and time. However, before submitting an REA, there are several things a contractor should be aware of, including:
- The claim must be made on at least one contract or Federal Acquisition Regulation provision
- The more detail the better
- Include exhibits and attachments to strengthen the REA
- Time is of the essence
- Attorney fees and time spent preparing an REA may be recoverable costs
- Take advantage of experts and consultants
- Retain legal counsel
Filing an REA can be burdensome. Having professional assistance and proper paperwork is necessary for a successful adjustment.
What Is an Equitable Adjustment?
When a dispute arises between a contractor and the government, the contractor submits a request for equitable adjustment. A request for equitable adjustment is a request for a change to the contract price or a provision of the contract under a specific, pertinent clause. An REA submission to the government is a way to negotiate a settlement without having to file a claim or go through litigation.
Often an REA is submitted under the Changes clause, which requires contractors to assert their right to an adjustment within 30 days from the receipt of a formal change order.
Equitable Adjustments vs. certified claims
When there is a dispute, a contractor begins by filing a request for equitable adjustment. If the REA is unsuccessful, they may then submit a certified claim. An assigned Contracting Officer (CO) then issues a final decision on the claim. If the contractor is not satisfied with the decision, they can appeal to the appropriate board of contract appeals or Court of Federal Claims.
A contractor can begin by filing a certified claim and skip the request for equitable adjustment when the circumstances dictate. However, it is usually best to start with a request for equitable adjustment. An REA does not request a CO to submit a final decision, thought both a claim and REA may need certain certifications. Although they are frequently confused, an REA is not defined as a claim because it does not require the final decision of a CO.
Contact Us Today
Contact our certified claims and requests for equitable adjustment attorneys in Washington D.C., or Tyson, Virginia. Our team at Ward & Berry PLLC is prepared to explore your situation in greater detail and provide the support you need. Call us today at (202) 331-8160 or click here for our contact page.