Federal Acquisition Regulations For Dummies In this training video, we’ll go over the basics of FAR, or the federal acquisition regulations; how to navigate the FAR; and briefly go over flowdowns.

What Is The FAR? The FAR, or federal acquisition regulations govern the acquisition and procurement policies and procedures for the Executive Branch of the federal government. It is supplemented by the DFARS, which covers the Defense branch of the government. The FAR is updated regularly, so be sure to check https://acquisition.gov/far for up-to-date information

How Do I Navigate The FAR?

  • Parts 1-4: General
  • Parts 5-12: Competition And Acquisition Planning
  • Parts 13-18: Contracting Methods And Types
  • Parts 19-26: Socioeconomic Programs
  • Parts 27-33: Contracting Requirements
  • Parts 34-41: Special Categories
  • Parts 42-51: Contract Management
  • Parts 52-53: Special Clauses

What Are Flowdown Clauses?   Flowdown clauses are provided to primes and subs at the end of an RFP. They are located in FAR Part 52.2. The number after 52.2 corresponds with the part of FAR it references. For example, 52.2 15 references FAR 15.


This is a quick tutorial that covers the basics of the Federal Acquisition Regulations. More information and training is available at spendlogic.com/training, so check it out if you want to learn more on this topic. Today, we’re going to cover what is the FAR also known as the Federal Acquisition Regulations. How do I navigate the FAR?

What is the relationship between flow-down clauses and the FAR, and where to go for more resources and training? First of all, what is the FAR? The FAR was created as the central spot for publishing acquisition policies and procedures. Think of it kind of the same way most companies’ procurement compliance groups work, in that, this is the authoritative document covering acquisition for the executive branch. Specific agencies have their own supplements, such as the DoDs, DFARS.

These add to the FAR rather than duplicate it. They also don’t violate anything found in the FAR, which means that if anything, the supplement will add requirements or be more strict than the FAR. The FAR is updated regularly. For example, thresholds are updated every five years. If you want to get to the latest version of the FAR, go to acquisition.gov/FAR, it’s a relatively new website that works pretty well and you can be assured that you’re not looking at something that is out of date.

Navigating the FAR is relatively straightforward if you know how it’s organized. The FAR contains parts, subparts, sections, and subsections. In general, it’s organized into eight basic subject matter areas. Parts 1 through 4 are General, parts 5 through 12, Competition and Acquisition Planning, parts 13 through 18, Contracting Methods and Types, parts 19 through 26, Socioeconomic Programs, parts 27 through 33, Contracting Requirements or Cost Principles, parts 27 through 43 have Contracting Requirements, parts 34 through 41, Special Categories, parts 42 through 51, Contract Management, and parts 52 through 53 are Clauses and Forms.

If you see a citation for FAR 15.403 -1(a), it means you should go to FAR Part 15, then find Section 403 subsection 1, paragraph (a). In general categories, it means you’re going to be looking at contracting methods and types. Once you get to FAR 15, you see that it’s contracting by negotiation.

We commonly get questions about the FAR as it relates to flow-down clauses. Flow-downs are typically provided to primes and subs at the end of an RFP or contract. Flow-downs are conveniently numbered to correspond to the FAR parts that they reference. Every flow-down with the exception of agency-specific supplemental flow-downs start with 52.2. What comes next is the FAR part that it references.

For instance, in alignment with the previous example, a flow-down of 52.215 refers to FAR part 15. We’ve barely scratched the surface here. Take a minute to review the latest version of the FAR. If you’re interested in learning more about the FAR, visit us at spendlogic.com/training, or send us an email at [email protected].

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