Government Contracts Article – Week of January 27, 2020

Suspension and Debarment Reference Sheet

  • FAR Subpart 9.4 covers suspension and debarment. Agencies may have their own supplemental regulations.
  • Contractors, subcontractors, and affiliates may be suspended or debarred.
  • Conduct may be imputed from individuals to an entity.
  • If an entity or individual is suspended, debarred, or proposed for debarment, it is excluded from receiving new contracts or working on new contracts as a representative of a contractor.
  • Suspension, debarment, or proposed for debarment does not automatically cause termination of an existing contract. However, the government cannot place orders exceeding the guaranteed minimum on indefinite quantity contracts or against FSS contracts, BPA’s, or basic ordering agreements and cannot add new work to or extend the duration of current contracts.
  • Subcontracts in excess of $35,000 may not be entered into with a contractor that is suspended, debarred, or proposed for debarment.
  • The causes, evidentiary standards, and procedures for suspension and debarment differ. Ensure any suspension or debarment notice has clearly outlined the cause for suspension or debarment and that it is one listed in the statute and that proceedings are being conducting according to the relevant regulations.
  • Regarding the cause for suspension or debarment relating to the commission of a fraud or criminal offense in connection with a public contract or subcontract, debarment requires a conviction or civil judgment. Suspension only requires the commission of the fraud or offense.
  • If the government establishes cause for suspension or debarment, it does not necessarily have to move forward with the action if it determines that the contractor is presently responsible and the risk to the government no longer exists.
  • For resolution of a suspension or debarment proceeding, the government must issue a written decision; alternatively, the matter may be resolved by administrative agreement.


Attorney Kristi Morgan AronicaOur government contracts briefs, reports, and articles are published by Attorney Kristi Morgan Aronica. She serves as counsel to government contractors and subcontractors throughout Texas and nationally.