bid protest interventionTypes of Bid Protest Intervention

At the U.S. Court of Federal Claims adopts two types of bid  protest intervention. They are: intervention as of right or by permission of the court. In either case, you or your attorney must enter the case in a timely fashion.

Who May Intervene?

As a government contract awardee, either GAO or the U.S. Court of Federal Claims will generally allow you to intervene as a party to a bid protest once you file a timely motion. You still must show that you are an interested party and that you can be prejudiced if you are not allowed to intervene into the case.

Many contractors may choose to not participate simply because they might feel as though the government’s defense posture may protect their rights. However, when the stakes are high, and often they are, government contractors realize that sometimes the agency may miss critical legal arguments. 

The bottom line is that if you can show that the court’s ruling without you can impair your ability to protect your interest, chances are that you will be allowed to participate. See 4 CFR 21.


Providing that you have been allowed to participate in the case, you can now respond to the protestor’s motions, briefs etc. As the case with any bid protest, as a contractor and intervenor, you will not get access to the sensitive agency source selection materials. This is why it is advisable to retain an attorney that can adequately protect your rights.

Timeliness for Bid Protest Intervention

As a general you should promptly intervene once you receive notice that a protest was filed. The protestor has essentially given you notice that it is ready to challenge your award. There is no statutory deadline. However, there some cases where the intervenor tried to enter the case too late.

When the court receives your motion to intervene into the bid protest, it will look at (a) the length of any delay in filing the motion (b) the prejudice to the existing parties and (3) any other unusual circumstances that could lean in favor or against granting the motion.

If you are contemplating intervening / defending your award you should consult with a bid protest lawyer. Call 1-866-601-5518 for a FREE Initial Consultation.

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