Government contracting rules and regulations dictate how you do business with the government. FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations) is one of the most important laws to know for any company looking to work with the federal government, and there are various other guidelines that govern what companies can and cannot do in order to comply. FAR is a long document and it’s not just FAR that governs your business decisions as a contractor; there are also numerous other laws that have an impact on government contractors. In this blog post, we’ll cover some of these key points so you can get started on understanding your responsibilities as a contractor!
What are Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR)?
FAR is a massive document that governs how the government does business with companies of all types across every industry, including information technology (IT), construction, education and more. FAR includes numerous laws on topics ranging from subcontracting to human trafficking and everything in between! There are hundreds upon hundreds of FAR laws that govern everything from cost accounting to workplace safety.
FAR is not only a code of regulations, it actually has the force and effect of law–and violating FAR can result in hefty fines. If you’re looking to work with the government as a contractor, FAR applies to your organization whether or not you know about its existence! FAR is publicly available and can be accessed on the FAR website.
The Federal Acquisition Regulations, also known as the “Bible” for government contracting, is the basis for all federal government contracts. The FAR documents all provisions and forms relevant to the contracting procedure, as well as any related rules. FAR is regularly referenced by companies who contract with the government as well as the courts in disputes arising from government contracts. To conduct business with the federal government, you must have a basic understanding of what’s in the FAR and how to apply it.
What you need to know about FAR
FAR isn’t just some dusty old document-it’s actually one of the most important laws that govern your business decisions when working with the government. FAR contains hundreds of laws on topics across every industry, including information technology (IT) and human trafficking. There are also numerous other laws that have an impact on what companies can and cannot do in order to comply and these will vary depending on your business sector or activity within the company.
The FAR is divided into 53 parts, each part dealing with a separate aspect of the acquisition process. The first six parts deal with general government acquisition matters and the next six parts deal with aspects of acquisition planning. The rest of the FAR focuses on additional issues, such as the simplified acquisition threshold (formerly known as little purchases), large dollar value acquisitions, labor laws, contract administration, and relevant clauses and forms. Part 19, Small Business Programs, and Part 52, which include the basic conditions of a government contract, are important sections for small enterprises.
Although the FAR is the primary acquisition regulation for the federal government, each government agency may issue an agency acquisition supplement to the FAR. We also have the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS), General Services Acquisition Regulation Supplement (GSARS), and National Aeronautics Space Administration FAR Supplement (NASFARS) to name a few. Many of these are on the Internet at the agency’s web site.
What you need to know about FAR as a government contractor
FAR is not just a document that governs how the government does business with contractors, it’s also a code of regulations that has the force and effect of law. This means that violating FAR can result in significant fines for your company. The FAR, or Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), is a huge document that must be understood in order to avoid breaking the rules.
FAR is one of the most important laws you need to be aware of. FAR applies equally to every organization that does business with the government. FAR is publicly available and can be accessed online. The FAR provides the foundation for every government contract, including subcontracting regulations that govern how you do business with other companies in your supply chain. There is no alternative for just diving in and beginning your learning journey when it comes to the FAR, which may appear intimidating at first. FAR is also regularly updated, so be sure to check the FAR website on a regular basis.
When first beginning your journey into FAR compliance there are three key areas that you need to focus on:
- Understanding how FAR applies to your procurement activities.
- Considerations for small businesses under FAR part 19 and subcontracting regulations found in FAR 52.
- FAR clauses and contract types, such as fixed price contracts or cost reimbursement type of contracts.
The FAR is a complex document that can seem very daunting at first glance but with time you will quickly realize how beneficial the FAR actually is to your business success when contracting with the government. The FAR has been around for decades and there are FAR experts who can help you understand the FAR better and how to comply with its regulations.