For government contractors, trying to predict how COVID-19 might affect a government project can be extraordinarily challenging task. One bidder recently attempted to provide some clarity by stating, in its bid, that COVID-19 was a “force majeure event” and that the bidder would be entitled to extra time if COVID-19 affected the project.
Unfortunately for the bidder, its effort failed: the agency rejected the bid for improperly exceeding the scope of a relevant FAR clause. The GAO then confirmed that the agency had acted properly.
There are not many people or organizations that can say they anticipated the spread of this pandemic disease that is confining million to their homes as part of stay in place orders and self quarantines.
Though the FAR Council did not foresee that the coronavirus and COVID-19 would trap contractors in their homes, it did anticipate that from time to time events completely out of the control of contractors may conspire to affect the performance of contracts—though perhaps not to this magnitude.