Nonprofit Parent Companies do not Automatically Cause Affiliation for SBA Size Determinations

The Office of Hearings and Appeals, more commonly referred to as OHA, is tasked with deciding size determination appeals that arise under the Small Business Act of 1958, as well as 13 C.F.R. parts 121 and 134. When an unsuccessful offeror raises a question, via a size protest, regarding an Awardee’s size under the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code on any given solicitation, the SBA Area Office will review the protest and issue a size determination. Then, a losing party can appeal the size determination to OHA.

Affiliation is a common topic that OHA addresses. In a recent decision, OHA looked at the question of how nonprofits fit into the affiliation rules. Since a small business has to be a for-profit entity, can a small business be affiliated with a nonprofit parent company?

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Back to Basics: Size Protests and Appeals

When a business is poised to win a federal contract award set aside for small businesses, there is always the potential for a competitor to challenge that award on the basis that the proposed winner is not actually a small business based on SBA’s size and affiliation rules. Or, if your company just lost an award, you may consider challenging that the proposed winner is a small business. Either way, it pays to know the basics behind size protests and appeals. While you could read through my recent handbook on Procedures and Pitfalls of Size Protests and Appeals (it’s a good read!), here are some key things to keep in mind when considering size protests and appeals.

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2022 NDAA Requires Prompt SAM Update If SBA Issues Adverse Size Determination

If, as the result of a size protest or appeal, the SBA makes a final determination that a company is not a small business, the company will be required to update SAM within two days to reflect that it is no longer small. And if the company doesn’t recertify within two days, the SBA will do the honors and update the company’s SAM profile.

This tough new requirement is part of the compromise version 2022 National Defense Authorization Act, which is likely to be signed into law in the coming weeks, although it is unclear when the SBA’s regulations will be revised to implement the change.

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Five Things You Should Know: Responding to Size Protests

There are many things to know about responding to size protests. One could probably fill a book with the information-(actually I did, for those who want a real deep dive!). But if you need to know just the basics, here are five things you should know about size protests that can help you be prepared if your company is facing a size protest.

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Are You a Small Business Being Acquired by a Large Business? Check Your Pending Bids

Many small business clients of mine have been approached by or considered acquisition by a larger firm. Well, if this sort of sale or merger would turn a small business into a large business, the small business should pay close attention to a little-publicized change stemming from SBA’s Mentor-Protégé Consolidation rule that came out last fall. The new rule could result in a company losing out on an otherwise successful bid.

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Whose Jurisdiction is it Anyways? GAO Dismisses Size Challenge

GAO recently dismissed a protest to an awardee’s eligibility under the applicable size standard. The protester argued that the agency should have known that the awardee exceeded the nonmanufacturer rule’s 500-employee maximum. After extensive briefing from both parties and from the SBA itself, GAO found that the awardee’s proposal didn’t raise any issues and that it was really up to the SBA to decide the size issues anyway.

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New GovCon Handbook Coming Soon! Procedures and Pitfalls of Size Protests and Appeals

I’m pleased to announce that volume 5 of the “Koprince Law LLC GovCon Handbooks” series will be published soon! This GovCon Handbook, entitled Procedures and Pitfalls of Size Protests and Appeals, will be published through Amazon. Check the rest of this post for additional details.

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