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If you are doing business with the federal government, you’ve probably asked yourself, “What Are The Federal Acquisition Regulations?” If you don’t want to scroll through Wikipedia or read all 53 parts for your answers, read on to find the rules you need to know.

The Federal Acquisition Regulations

The FAR, or federal acquisition regulations, are a set of rules and clauses that are a part of the Code of Federal Regulations. These rules and clauses govern how federal agencies procure goods and services and is codified in 48 C.F.R. parts 1 through 53

Simply put, the federal acquisition regulations are rules that cover both the federal government and contractors that ensure purchasing procedures are standard, consistent, fair, and impartial.

These regulations were originally issued in 1974, and have had several amendments since then.

Who Is Subject To The Federal Acquisition Regulations?

The federal acquisition regulations (FAR) covers the Executive Branch. However, the legislative and judicial branches will also follow the spirit of the law. Contractors who do business with these agencies will be subject to flow-downs of a subset of these regulations.

What Are Some Important Parts Of The Federal Acquisition Regulations?

Like most government regulations, the FAR has several parts to it. Not all of them apply to all businesses though, and there are a few that are of more interest to businesses.

Some of the most important parts of the federal acquisition regulations would be parts 15.4, Parts 30 and 31, and Subparts 42.7, 42.8, and 42.17, which cover contract pricing.

The single largest part of the FAR is FAR 52

FAR Part 52

FAR 52 contains solicitation provisions and contract clauses, also known as “flowdown clauses.” These provisions and clauses cover:

  • required solicitation provisions
  • required-when-applicable solicitation provisions
  • optional solicitation provisions
  • required contract clauses
  • required-when-applicable contract clauses
  • optional contract clauses

FAR Part 15.4

FAR 15.4 describes the policies and procedures for pricing contracts for prime contracts, including subcontracts. Also included in this are modifications to contracts.

In this section, contracting officers are instructed to source supplies and services at fair and reasonable prices, when they need to obtain certified pricing data, and proposal analysis, price negotiation, and more.

What Purchases Are Subject To the FAR?

Any purchases or acquisitions by the executive branch that include supplies or services. In this instance, “supplies” would cover all things except for land or interest in land, and services would be any tasks or work performed by a contractor.

What Is Not Subject To Federal Acquisition Regulations?

Any contract that is not a procurement contract, covers land leases, or regards grants would not be covered in the FAR. Subcontracts under federal contracts are also not subject to the FAR.

Still have a few more questions?

If you’ve read this and are still left wondering “what are the federal acquisition regulations?” contact us today. We have over a decade of expertise and look forward to helping your company.

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