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Unauthorized Commitments/Ratification


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Hello, WIFCON Community!

Do you all consider the following scenario an unauthorized commitment and, thus, requiring a ratification to authorize payment?

*A not-to-exceed (NTE) $30,000 task order is in place for labor-hour services. 

* The COR authorizes the Contractor to work beyond the $30,000 in obligated funds, which the Contractor performs and invoices for payment.

I believe the scenario represents the COR committing an unauthorized commitment and would require a ratification in accordance with the FAR 1.602-3 process. Even if there is language in the task order noting the Contractor performs at its own risk past the NTE amount, I believe the COR still committed an unauthorized commitment since he/she directed the Contractor to perform beyond obligated funding. Once the ratification is approved (assuming all the conditions in FAR 1.602-3 are met), the Contracting Officer can modify the contract to obligate additional funding.

Does this sound right?

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@C Culham - in relevant part, the letter states "Please note that this appointment does not authorize the COR to... approve any actions that would result in additional charges to the agency" and outlines duties to include "regularly monitoring and tracking payments, ensuring that the total dollar value of all invoices does not exceed the total contract value..."

This is standard COR letter language at the agency.

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