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May 07, 2020

ABA hosts 26th Annual Federal Procurement Institute as a four-webinar series

CHICAGO, May 7, 2020 — Legal experts, federal judges and government officials will discuss significant federal procurement developments at the American Bar Association Section of Public Contract Law’s 26th Annual Federal Procurement Institute, held this year from May 13 through June 10 as a series of four webinars due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2020 Virtual Federal Procurement Institute
Sponsored by the ABA Section of Public Contract Law

1-2:30 p.m. ET May 13 and May 20; 1-3 p.m. ET
May 27; 1-2:30 p.m. ET June 10


1-2:30 p.m. ET, Wednesday, May 13

“Whither and Whether to Protest: New Legislative and Judicial Developments and their Impact on Filing Decisions” — Every year, between 2,500 to 3,000 bid protests are filed at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), with another 100 to 200 protests filed at the Court of Federal Claims (COFC). Yet, less than 20% of GAO protests are sustained, and the win rate is even lower at COFC. In addition, new Department of Defense and legislative agendas seek to curtail a contractor’s ability to protest. This panel will present industry and outside counsel perspectives on why the ability to protest provides important protections to the contractor and helps ensure integrity in the procurement process.

1-2:30 p.m. ET, Wednesday, May 20

“View from the Inside: Perspectives on the Qualities of ADR in Different Fora” — Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is not the same in every forum in which parties seek resolution of procurement and contracting disputes. At the Government Accountability Office, for instance, where bid protests constitute the majority of cases brought, almost all ADR consists of outcome prediction by the assigned attorney. By contrast, the robust ADR programs at the Boards of Contract Appeal, Office of Dispute Resolution for Acquisition and the Court of Federal Claims tend to emphasize mediation, but not exclusively, and each tribunal has a slightly different approach. Panelists will discuss the ADR experience at their respective venues and provide insights into the most effective presentations and strategies for litigants.

1-3 p.m. ET, Wednesday, May 27

“Ethics Issues Regarding Social Media and Government Contracting” — This presentation will address the social media tools and how social media has become a component of attorney competence. The panel will discuss the various applicable ABA Model Rules, and some select states’ rules of professional conduct that apply when addressing social media-related issues in legal practice generally, and particularly as these issues may apply to the government contracting community. 

1-2:30 p.m. ET, Wednesday, June 10

“Government Construction Contracts: Recession or Economic Downturn — How to Protect Your Rights and Determine Your Remedies” — Government construction contracts panelists will explore the following subtopics:

The Miller Act: How to make a claim on a payment bond

Releases and waivers and how to incorporate reservation of rights language

Bankruptcy: A subcontractor or general contractor files for bankruptcy, now what do you do?

A complete agenda, including a list of panelists, can be found here. This event is free for members of the press. For media credentialing and registration, please contact Jennifer Kildee at 202-662-1732 or [email protected].

The ABA Section of Public Contract Law is committed to the improvement of the public procurement process and upholding the highest ethical and professional standards while providing a collegial forum of networking, sharing ideas and building consensus.   

The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement on line. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.