FAR Termination for Default or Cause (T4D), T4C Lawyers

Termination For Convenience & FAR Termination for Default Lawyers

Help For Government Contractors Nationwide and Overseas With Government Contract Termination for Default Appeals and for Convenience. Watson &. Associates, LLC includes lawyers that are former government contracting professionals and understand the common mistakes made by the contracting officer. Our goal is to get your company back on track by vigorously appealing the adverse termination for default decision by the contracting officer or effectively responding to a cure notice.

A FAR termination for default government contract action can severely cripple your business because of the leverage that the agency has to collect damages if successful on appeal.  You no longer can make a profit on the contract that you worked so hard to get. If you receive a notice of contract default, having the best attorney to handle your case is imperative.

A Federal government contract Termination for Default or cause can be either in whole or in part. Neither one is good news for a small business or even a large government contractor.

How you deal with a contract default is equally important. Furthermore, your approach to how and where you appeal a FAR government contract termination for cause is critical.  The contracting officer will more than likely defend her position by a claim that your company actually failed to comply with the contract terms and conditions or that you provided enough to support her conclusion that you have an anticipated failure to meet the contractual obligations.

What is the Impact of a Government Contract Termination for Default or Cause?

 A government contract default or cause can be referred to as the ‘kiss of death” for a contractor that has serious consequences. Not only does it impair your chances to potentially do business with the federal government but you can also be subjected to paid progress payments, re-procurement costs and more.

With law offices in Washington DC and in Denver, Colorado, the contract termination appeal lawyers at Watson & Associates, LLC can provide experienced legal counsel, litigation and appeals services.

FAR Termination for Default Attorney Services

  • Analyze and assess your specific facts
  • FAR 49 Termination for default government contracts support(T4D)
  • Responding to FAR cure notices
  • Procurement law disputes and Court’s appellate jurisdiction
  • Terminations for default consulting
  • Show cause notice FAR responses
  • Providing legal advice from the early stages of the cure notice or show cause letter.
  • Help you apply the types of contract damages allowed and avoid excess costs incurred by the government;
  • Help with defenses such as latent defects in construction projects
  • Help to gather supporting documentation including agreements and communications
  • Assessment of liquidated damages in contract defaults 
  • Help you to prepare your settlement proposal under FAR termination for convenience clauses.
  • Help with contract negotiation with the relevant parties
  • Appeal the Agency decision on your behalf to CBCA, ASBCA or US Court of Federal Claims
  • Termination appeals to the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals

To speak with a contract disputes Attorney and your show cause notice of termination or appealing the contracting officer’s final decision, Call  1-866-601-5518 for a Free Initial Consultation. 


We help you to avoid the most costly mistakes when the agency terminates your federal contracts. When your contract is terminated for convenience by the government, the first thing that you should do is to assess the facts when your receive the termination for convenience letter to see if the agency is liable for a breach of contract. When the contracting officer determines that the contractor fails to prove its case may not always be a legal one.

  • When there is a contract action or contract default, you want to also see whether the facts of your case have merit for a potential appeal. 

Sometimes, assessing the wrongful actions upfront can save your company thousands of dollars in litigation fees. 

Without the proper approach to either situation, the agency usually wins. Your goal when there is a termination for default is to make a determination whether you have a strong appeal case. You have to act quickly or lose your rights to appeal.

At Watson & Associates, LLC our federal contract attorneys help small businesses and large DOD contractors to effectively deal with contract termination of procurement contract and FAR compliance matters, and guide our clients to the next steps of appealing the contracting officer’s final decision.

Termination for Default Appeals and Litigation 

When the contracting officer determines that he or she, in the government s interest, will issue a termination for default letter and a final decision, you must promptly make a decision to appeal or not to appeal to the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA), Civilian Board of Contract Appeals (CBCA) or  U.S. Court of Federal Claims (COFC). Obviously, your business’ future is at risk.  With the short appeal deadline before you, you want to have an appellate lawyer that can assess the facts and agency record and help you to decide whether there is merit to filing an appeal.

See How to Defend Qui Tam and False Claims Act charges that Involve Government Contracts

When you appeal a termination for default, the court’s options are limited. The most common remedy is to covert the default into a termination for convenience. However, sometimes one may find that the government actually breached the contract. The remedy in those situations will be different.

You want to hire an experienced government contract termination for default appeal lawyer that understands how these cases are litigated. At Watson & Associates, LLC our goal is to seek out where the government committed a serious error and we can put your company back on track.

What Happens If You Default on a Government Contract? What Are the Consequences?  

The agency’s termination of a contract for default will have serious consequences for your company. Not only does your business lose work that can create profitable incomes but the impact on your past performance can cripple your company when bidding on future contracts.

When there is a contract default on your record, you might also be forced to return progress payments to the agency; you may also have to pay the government any excess costs of re-procurement. Another obvious consequence is the cost of expensive litigation. Whether you are appealing the default decision to the ASBCA, CBCA or Court of Federal Claims, the cost of hiring a government contracts appellate attorney will be expensive.

Important Matters to Consider

Did the contracting officer issue you a FAR cure notice? He or she should have provided you with an opportunity to cure the problem. Normally, a cure notice will be for 10 days. You want to address problems with the contract, identify issues that are beyond your control, and address all issues pointed out by the contractor.

Almost all government procurement contracts include a clause that allows the government agency to terminate the contract if you default on the contract. 

  • Unexpected additional expenses
  • Loss of revenue
  • Marred performance record
  • Damaged reputation
  • Loss of eligibility for future bids

If the contractor fails to make progress or fails to perform any other provision of the contract, the Agency Contracting Officer (ACO or CO) will issue a “Cure Notice”. The notice must be in writing and specifically state what failure exists and provide 10 days to ‘cure’ the failure.

If you received a FAR cure notice, how did you respond? An improper response can lead to a contract default action.

Our federal contract consulting and litigation services is geared to help you to get the default converted to a termination for convenience, recover under breach of contract if warranted, and to protect your company from being barred from doing business with the government.

FAR Termination for Default Process

Under FAR 49.402-3, the termination for default process requires the contracting officer to do certain things. When he or she fails to follow these requirements, there can be an argument for abuse of discretion since the FAR makes it the below requirements part of the mandatory process.

Under FAR 49.402-3, the contracting officer shall consider the following factors in determining whether to terminate a contract for default:

           (1) The terms of the contract and applicable laws and regulations.

           (2) The specific failure of the contractor and the excuses for the failure.

           (3) The availability of the supplies or services from other sources.

           (4) The urgency of the need for the supplies or services and the period of time required to obtain them from other sources, as compared with the time delivery could be obtained from the delinquent contractor.

           (5) The degree of essentiality of the contractor in the Government acquisition program and the effect of a termination for default upon the contractor’s capability as a supplier under other contracts.

           (6) The effect of a termination for default on the ability of the contractor to liquidate guaranteed loans, progress payments, or advance payments.

           (7) Any other pertinent facts and circumstances.

Contractor Defenses to a Government Contract Termination for Default

Excusable Delay

The standard FAR “Default” clauses suggest that an excusable delay is present if the delay is beyond the control of the contractor. As a practical matter,  you must be aware of the government’s argument that the delay was foreseeable. It cannot be foreseeable. As contract termination for default attorneys, we help you to comb the facts to make sure that the situation is “beyond the control and without the fault or negligence” of the contractor.

If you have either a fixed priced contact supply and service, R&D, and construction contract “Default” clauses all list the following nine “examples” of excusable delays (when you appeal the contracting officer’s final decision to terminate your contract for cause, the following is not all-inclusive:

  1. acts of God or of the public enemy,
  2. acts of the Government in either its sovereign or contractual capacity,
  3. fires,
  4. floods,
  5. epidemics,
  6. quarantine restrictions,
  7. strikes,
  8. freight embargoes, and
  9. unusually severe weather.

Tip: Did you recieve a notice of default construction contract letter?If you are a federal construction contractor, be mindful that you can assert a legal defense if another contractor, at the direction of the government causes the delay. The standard “Default” clauses used in fixed-price Government contracts generally give contracting officers the right to terminate a contract for default if you fail to (a) deliver supplies or to perform the services or work within the time specified in the contract, (b) make progress on the progress to endanger contract performance or to prosecute the work with the diligence that will ensure its completion, or (c) perform any other provisions of the contract.

Tip: Events listed in the FAR clause are only examples. Other situations can count for legal defense of excusable delay in a termination for default or termination for cause government contract appeals case. Always stop work when you receive notice from the CO.

Defective Specifications and Impossibility

 Federal contractors can assert a defense to contract default actions if failure to perform is caused by defective specifications furnished by the Government.

Defective specification legal defenses can arise from inconsistencies, legibility problems, and ambiguities that may entitle companies to additional time or money damages to defects that render performance commercially impracticable or impossible.

Tip: Excusable delay or excuse of performance for defective specifications is based on the implied warranty of Government-furnished specifications.

Tip: The key to asserting legal defenses to termination for default is whether you promptly notified the government about the problem.  You cannot wait until the contracting officer issues you a default to raise the defense. You have a legal duty to mitigate your damages.

Contracting Officer’s Failure to Follow Procedural Requirements

When termination cases come about, small businesses and federal contractors should realize that under fixed-price supply and service and R&D contracts, the contracting officer must issue you a cure notice giving at least 10 days to cure the problem before issuing a default for failure to make progress or to prosecute the work or to comply with other provisions of the contract.

Other legal defenses to termination of government contracts for default include:

  • Contracting Officer’s Failure to Exercise Discretion
  • Abuse of Discretion by the Agency / CO

Federal Acquisition Regulation – FAR Termination for Convenience (T4C) Legal Services 

Did You Receive a Termination Letter From the Contracting Officer?

If yes, then your next steps are critical. A T4C government contract relates to the federal government’s unilateral right to end performance on an existing contract for legitimate reasons.

This level of termination can be for the entire contract or part of the contract. Companies subject to this level of statutory termination, however, has to be for legitimate reasons by the government. Federal contractors are sometimes unaware of what those legitimate reasons are.  

When it comes to federal contract defaults, companies also are unaware of their legal rights, the appeals process, or statutory allowable damages when the agency terminates the contract for convenience. This is where Watson’s government contracts lawyers can help.

T4C Government Contract termination settlement proposal consulting

When the government legitimately terminates your contract for convenience, our attorneys and consulting help you to get to the next steps.  Our termination settlement proposal consulting includes helping you to prepare and submit a viable settlement proposal that articulates your claims; qualify your claims to meet statutory allowable recoveries.

  • Contracting Officers will usually find a way to either reject your claims or try to settle a lower price.
  • Understand how termination and settlement strategies must keep your company’s future in mind.

Termination for Convenience vs default

Termination for convenience (t4c government contract action) in government contracting occurs through no fault of the contractor. Depending on the facts of your case, you may be able to settle with the government for statutory-allowed damages. Profits in this type of contract termination is limited. 

On the other hand, a termination for default is similar to a breach of contract in the commercial world. The government in most cases are terminating the contract for non-compliance, failure to meet schedules or some other reason. The contractor can be liable to the government for additional re-procurement costs and other associated breach damages.

What is Termination for Default?

Termination for Default in a government contract means that there is the complete or partial termination of a federal contract. Often the default is issued because of a contractor’s actual or anticipated failure to meet the obligations of the contract.  The type of termination is often referred to as a FAR Termination for Cause under FAR PartT 12 for the acquisition of commercial items.

Contract Termination for Cause Vs Default

Besides terminology, there is really no difference between a government contract termination for cause vs default. Some agencies refer to them differently. However, the termination for default process and litigation requirements are the same. Remembering that the contracting officer should not issue a termination action when it is through no fault of the contractor.  Our government contract disputes attorneys can help you to develop a strategy to push back and even to convince the court that the government acted unreasonably or violated procurement law.

Overseas & Nationwide Government Contractor Termination Washington DC Appeals Help

Our Government termination for default (FAR Part 49 T4D) and for convenience law firm provides legal counsel to contractors throughout the United States and overseas including Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Washington DC, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and Virgin Islands. In addition to T4C government contracts, we also provide terminations for default consulting to clients in Dubai, Afghanistan, Iraq, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, UK and middle eastern regions. Find out more about debarment of government contractors.

Call Watson’s FAR Termination for Default  Appeal Lawyers

To maximize your damages for convenience terminations or help appealing federal government contract termination for default cases, call our Colorado or Washington DC T4D and T4C government contract lawyers. Call  Toll-Free 1-866-601-5518.

Watson & Associates’ government contract law lawyers represent clients with government procurement claims, FAR termination for default government contracts disputes, termination for convenience, termination settlement proposal litigation, and appeals in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, and Boards of Contract Appeals if you are terminated for cause.

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Watson & Associates, LLC Only Practices Exclusively in the Areas of Federal Law in Washington DC.