Photo of Michael H. Payne

Michael H. Payne is a Partner and Chair of the Federal Construction Group at Cohen Seglias Pallas Greenhall & Furman PC as well as an experienced trial lawyer who has represented contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers in all aspects of federal contract and construction law. His efforts have included assistance in the preparation of bids and proposals, interpretation of contract provisions, filing of protests, negotiation of contracts, and the litigation and settlement of contract claims and appeals.

Michael co-authored Bidding and Managing Government Contracts, published by R. S. Means Co., Inc, and also co-authored chapters in two books on Federal Government contracting published by Thompson/Reuters. He currently presents several seminars each year on a variety of federal government contracting topics including construction, proposal preparation, and ethics in government contracting, while maintaining an active national construction practice.

Disputes frequently arise because the government refuses to agree that a contractor is entitled to additional money or time resulting from constructive changes, differing site conditions, government-caused delays, or countless other reasons. These disagreements typically are dealt with through the submission of Requests for Equitable Adjustment (REAs) or certified claims and are ultimately resolved through the disputes process. They focus on the rights of the parties under the specific terms of the contract. The problem, however, is that contractors also incur costs because of government indecisiveness that has not yet generated an REA or claim under a particular contract clause. This places the contractor in a state of limbo, not knowing whether there will be a significant impact to the project.

Continue Reading The Impact of Government Indecision on Government Contractors

The Europe District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is hosting an Industry Day on August 15, 2018 in Tel Aviv. The event begins at 09:00 at The Ritz-Carlton Herzlia.

This conference will present an overview of upcoming construction projects in Israel and provide U.S. firms with an opportunity to meet potential Israeli subcontractors or suppliers.

Although these construction projects are performed in Israel, the law requires that the prime contracts must be awarded to U.S. firms and they, in turn, are permitted to subcontract up to 75% of the work to Israeli companies. Given the millions of dollars that have been obligated to the program, there are many opportunities for American and Israeli firms to work together.  Continue Reading Upcoming Industry Day in Tel Aviv

Earlier this month, my colleague, Michael Payne, and I attended Israel Industry Day sponsored by the Army Corps of Engineers (“USACE”) and the Israeli Ministry of Defense (“MOD”) in New York City. The purpose of the program was to present the Israel Foreign Military Sales (FMS) Construction Program and to introduce American and Israeli construction contractors and A/E firms to the upcoming construction opportunities in Israel. Information was provided on the general scope of USACE design build and design bid build projects within Israel; typical infrastructure and facilities being procured; potential repair, maintenance, and construction opportunities to support MOD facilities in Israel; as well as information on the solicitation and proposal process and various legal issues that apply to the Projects. Continue Reading Construction Opportunities in Israel for Federal Contractors

Agility Defense & Government Services, Inc. v. United States provides hope to contractors that incur higher than anticipated costs on a requirements contract or, alternatively, on construction contracts where line item prices are based on estimated quantities.  Continue Reading Federal Circuit Clarifies Requirements for Government-Furnished Estimated Quantities

Government contractors know that an unfavorable performance review posted to the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (“CPARS”) can be extremely costly. Many negotiated solicitations include past performance as an important or even primary evaluation factor for contract award. An unfavorable review on a past contract can impose significant costs on the contractor to address the unfavorable review with contracting officers on future solicitations. However, the contractor saddled with an unfair and inaccurate CPARS review may now have a means to challenge the review and recover some of these costs.  Continue Reading A New Way to Claim Damages Resulting from an Unfavorable CPARS Rating

The long-awaited Final Rule addressing changes to the SBA’s Mentor-Protégé program is being published in the Federal Register today. The Mentor-Protégé program that was limited to 8(a) Small Business Concerns has now been expanded and, effective August 24, 2016, will be available to Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses, HUBZones Small Businesses, and Women-Owned Small Businesses, as well as non-disadvantaged Small Business Concerns. The program is “designed to enhance the capabilities of protégé firms by requiring approved mentors to provide business development assistance to protégé firms and to improve the protégé firms’ ability to successfully compete for federal contracts.”

Continue Reading New Small Business Mentor-Protégé Program Announced By The SBA

In its final rule published on May 31, 2016, the SBA modified the regulations relating to affiliation based on an “identity of interest” pursuant to 13 C.F.R. § 121.103(f). Specifically, the SBA provided clearer guidelines regarding identity of interest affiliation due to familial relationships and economic dependence.

Continue Reading Identity of Interest Affiliation: Further Defined by the SBA

Change Ahead SignEarlier this week, we blogged about a final rule issued on May 31 by the Small Business Administration (“SBA”), which made several major changes to the small business regulations. This new rule implements changes mandated by the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, (“NDAA”) and finalizes the proposed rule issued by the SBA back in December of 2014.

Continue Reading Big Changes to Limitations on Subcontracting Requirements

Business People Meeting Discussion Communication ConceptAs we blogged Wednesday, this week the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) published a lengthy final rule that implements the long-awaited small business regulation changes mandated by the National Defense Authorization Act (“NDAA”) of 2013. The rule makes a number of very important changes affecting Federal contractors.  One of the more important changes makes it easier for small businesses to form joint ventures (JVs) to compete for government procurements and removes prior, and often confusing, restrictions.

Continue Reading SBA Makes It Easier for Small Businesses To Joint Venture for Federal Contracts