Defense Department Issues Guidance to Contractors on Managing Impact of COVID-19
Spring 2020

On March 30, 2020, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense issued a memorandum to procurement officials throughout the Department of Defense on managing the effects of the COVID-19 virus on defense contracts. This memorandum is authored by Kim Herrington, the Acting Principal Director, Defense Pricing and Contracting. Although the memorandum lacks detail, it should be viewed as an encouraging sign from the DoD that it recognizes its contractors are impacted by the virus and that they are entitled to seek relief.

Recognizing Need for Relief

The memorandum begins by acknowledging that the challenges the DoD faces in response to the virus are historic and borne across the total force, including military, civilian, and Defense Industrial Base. It recites that the DoD must work hand-in-hand with these communities to recover from the pandemic and maintain mission readiness. The virus affects the cost, schedule, and performance of many DoD contracts. Contractors that ordinarily work side-by-side with the DoD workforce have often been unable to access their work sites, and most contractors have coped with employees who are unavailable for work due to quarantine and state and local requests to restrict movement of their personnel.

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