SBA’s size protest rules contain a stick to force companies to respond to SBA as part of size determination. That stick is called the adverse inference rule. The adverse inference rule says that, if SBA requests specific information and a protested company refuses to provide it, SBA may assume that the missing information would show that the company is not a small business. In a recent decision, SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) upheld the use of the adverse inference.Continue reading
The joint venture two-year rule always generates a lot of questions. But it’s an important one for small business joint venture members to understand and comply with. A recent decision from the Small Business Administration Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) shows why. In the case, a joint venture lost an award because it violated the two-year rule.Continue reading
We are pleased to announce that the Second Edition of the GovCon Handbook, SBA Small Business Size and Affiliation Rules, is now available!
Is your small business really small? When it comes to federal government contracts, the answer can be a lot more complex than it sounds.
In this GovCon Handbook, government contracts attorneys provide an in-depth look at the size and affiliation regulations for federal contractors. Written in plain English and packed with easy to understand examples, this GovCon Handbook demystifies the SBA’s rules regarding small business status for government contracts.
As readers of SmallGovCon know, SBA interprets its small business joint venture rules very strictly. A small business joint venture must follow all of SBA’s requirements down to the letter, or risk being found noncompliant. In a recent case, SBA’s Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) examined how a joint venture was managed under the state law of Michigan and found that the joint venture was noncompliant with small business rules.Continue reading
The Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently took a look at SBA’s recent small business size and status protests to determine “whether the SBA had effective controls in place to (1) ensure protest decisions were properly enforced and to (2) monitor the protest process.” Overall, the OIG had positive things to say about the the protest process. What’s interesting for small business federal contractors are some of the numbers from this report, detailed below.Continue reading
In federal procurement law, it is often the case that decisions on protests and other cases come down to tough questions of law that could go either way, requiring the judge to carefully weigh the reasons for making ruling one way or another. Unfortunately, there are also cases where the decision can rest entirely on responding to a request, even one that gives the contractor little time to respond. Regardless of the situation, it can’t be overstated how crucial it is to respond timely to any requests, and make sure your company’s agents and representatives make the response their priority. In this case, this lesson was learned the hard way by one contractor.Continue reading
In a recent decision, the Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) examined a company that received two Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant awards. The SBA Area Office had determined that the awardee was not an eligible small business due to ostensible subcontractor affiliation and other reasons. This decision is an important reminder for SBIR candidates on how they should structure subcontracting teams, as SBA will examine SBIR awardee eligibility.Continue reading