When Can Your Late Bid Proposal Submission Be Accepted?

When deciding whether the contracting officer or agency can accept a late bid proposal submission, there are some very harsh decisions both at GAO and at the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. A recent GAO Case dealt with late proposal submission in a reverse auction.

GAO found that the protestor had failed to establish that its revised bid was submitted to and received by DLA prior to the closing time for the reverse auction, or that the reverse auction system otherwise malfunctioned.

GAO Late Bid Proposal Submission Analysis

When looking at what circumstances that would allow a late bid proposal submission to be accepted by a government contracting agency, GAO considers all relevant evidence in the record, including statements by parties on behalf of the protester and the agency, to ascertain whether a preponderance of the evidence shows that the proposal was at the designated location for receipt prior to the time set for closing. 

  • It is your responsibility to make sure that an electronically submitted bid proposal is received by the agency prior to the closing time.
  • This is true even if you sent your proposal via a third party such as FedEx or UPS.

Can a Contracting Officer Accept a Late Bid Proposal?

When there are late proposal quotes in negotiated procurements, GAO has held that the contracting official’s declaration that a procurement is closed is determinative.

  • The exception is if you can show that the decision not to accept your late proposal was unreasonable.

Each Case is Fact Specific

If you are wondering under what circumstance would a late bid proposal be accepted, courts look at the specific facts of each case. In your protest, you would want to find out if your facts warrant filing a case.

For help with late bid proposal submission and filing a protest, call our bid protest attorneys at 1-866-601-5518. FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION.

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