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Unfortunate Change To Settlement Fees And Costs Allowability Law


Reversing the ASBCA decision in Tecom, Inc., ASBCA Nos. 53884 et al., 07-2 BCA ¶ 33,674 (Sept. 21, 2007), the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit holds in Geren v. Tecom, Inc., No. 2008-1171 (May 19, 2009), that legal fees and costs incurred in connection with settling a private action for employment discrimination unrelated to fraud will be allowable only if the contractor can establish that the private plaintiff had very little likelihood of success on the merits. This ruling, which will be discussed next week at Crowell & Moring's OOPS conference, will greatly complicate the determination of allowable costs and place the responsible government contracting officer in the difficult position of second-guessing each settlement decision.

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