Untimely Protest? “Diligent Pursuit” may Keep Your Protest Alive

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ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON THIS SITE

By David Timm

Contractors who have filed or have considered filing a Bid Protest based on a mistake by an agency know that they have very little time to recognize an issue and take action before the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Typically, a protest challenging the award of a contract must be filed within 10 days (calendar, not business) of when a protester knows or should know of the basis of the protest. GAO routinely dismisses untimely protests without even considering the substance of the appeal. Government Agencies will always target timeliness in their brief when it might be an issue.

These facts result in many otherwise worthy Bid Protests being dismissed. While this feels harsh to contractors with legitimate complaints about tight turnaround, it is an integral part of keeping meritorious and timely protests before GAO process quick, inexpensive, and effective overall.

However, there are two important favorable rules GAO has developed over the years that may rescue contractors who might otherwise think they are out of luck due to timeliness concerns.

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