Bidder beware. Interpreting federal law can sometimes feel like solving a riddle. For example, when is an early bid late?
In the case, In re Sea Box, Inc., the Government Accountability Office (GAO) determined that a bid received by government servers eight minutes before the deadline was late because it did not arrive in the Contract Officer’s inbox until shortly after the deadline. To be clear, it did not matter when the bid was received by government servers, nor did it matter that the bid was fully in the control of the government once it was submitted.
Instead, the case turned on the interpretation of a Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR 52.215-1) that was incorporated into the bid by reference.
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