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Who should attend:

Attendees include: Contractors, Subcontractors with government construction contracts. They should have a base level knowledge of Government Contracting and Federal Acquisition Regulations and/or agency level supplements.

The course highlights advanced topics that continue to challenge seasoned professionals, including:

• Contract Administrators

• Directors of Construction Contracting

• Contract Specialists

• Attorneys

• Compliance Officers

• Finance and Accounting Professionals

• Subcontract Specialists

What you will learn:

It is the purpose of this program to equip both Government and industry representatives with the knowledge necessary to secure the greatest relief — or to suffer the least amount of harm — from construction contract changes, whether they be consciously ordered or result from uncontrollable circumstances. Because the subject is an intensely practical one, the course is similarly one of practical thrust. It tells you what you need to know about the elements — and the nuances — of the various types of changes, about your responsibilities, about your rights, about your remedies, about the dollar considerations.

This course tells you about all those things that bear upon the preference of changes, upon the sensible settlement of claims and — if all else fails — upon the prosecution and defense of such claims.

Topics include:

• Changes

• Site conditions

• Delays

• Suspensions

• Acceleration

• Impact costs

• Recognizing, avoiding and settling claims

No upcoming dates/locations at this time
Day 1
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
All Locations
Day 2
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
All Locations

Course Curriculum


1. Laying the Groundwork

a. Government construction — special features

b. Comparisons with private construction

c. Need for modification mechanism

d. Development of modification techniques


2. Types of Changes and Claims

a. Changes in work

b. Differing site conditions

c. Delays in work

d. Suspensions of work

e. Acceleration of performance

f. Interrelationships and comparisons



3. Changes Clause Coverage

a. The language and its evolution

b. Clause scheme and clause techniques

c. “Within the [contract’s] general scope”

d. The “cardinal change” doctrine

e. Contract breach vs. contract change

f. Deductive change vs. convenience termination


4. The Contracting Officer (C.O.) and

Changes Authority

a. C.O.’s role and control

b. C.O. authority — scope and limitations

c. C.O. representatives — their powers

d. Authority delegations — express and implied

e. Apparent authority — myth and misadventure

f. C.O. ratification — a saving grace

g. Contractor protection techniques

h. Need for written directives


5. Formal Change Orders

a. How change orders originate

b. Types of formal change orders

c. Processing and issuance

d. Contractor protests

e. Government duty to clearly direct

f. Contractor’s duty to perform change


6. Constructive Changes/General

a. Explanation of the doctrine

b. Its mechanics and results

c. Contractor notice requirements

d. Contract administration guidelines


7. Constructive Changes/Applicability

a. Constructive orders for extra work

b. Government interference with work

c. Defects in specifications and drawings

d. Contract interpretation problems

e. Impossibility/impracticability of performance

f. Government misrepresentation or


g. Acceleration of performance

h. Contract administration guidelines



8. General Analysis

a. The problem and its permutations

b. General legal principles

c. Development and pattern of the clause

d. Definition of site

e. Time of condition’s occurrence

f. Man-made vs. natural conditions


9. Recovery for Misrepresentation

a. Relief when conditions and contract differ

b. What is “indicated” in the contract

c. Misrepresentation vs. no representation

d. Information outside the contract

e. Contractor’s right to rely


10. Recovery for the Unanticipated

a. The elements of relief

b. “Unknown physical condition”

c. “Unusual nature” of condition

d. Condition not “ordinarily encountered”

e. Contractor site investigation duty

f. Off-site information

g. Government’s superior knowledge


11. Operating Problems

a. Variation in estimated quantities

b. The stop work problem

c. Effect of Government disclaimers

d. Contractor notice requirements



12. Impact and Consequences

a. Cancer effect on job performance

b. Inexcusable delays — default and damages

c. Excusable delays — relief possibilities

d. Concurrent delays — who gets what

e. Treatment in modification clauses


13. Excusable Delays

a. Acts of God

b. Public enemy

c. Government acts

d. Weather

e. Strikes

f. Labor supply

g. Financial difficulty

h. Subcontractor delays



14. Clause Evolution

a. Causes of suspensions and stoppages

b. Blame and burdens

c. Breach of contract remedy

d. Development of the special clause


15. Suspension Relief Factors

a. Ordered suspensions

b. Constructive suspensions

c. Requirement of Government fault

d. The sovereign immunity problem

e. Reasonable vs. unreasonable delay

f. The profit pinch

g. Relief under other clauses

h. Contract notice requirements



16. Basics of Acceleration

a. The theory of acceleration

b. Acceleration vs. expedited performance

c. The acceleration/delay relationship

d. “Changes” clause relief

e. Ordered accelerations

f. Constructive accelerations


17. Constructive Acceleration

a. Contractor’s excusable delay

b. Notice to Government of delay

c. Government denial of time extension

d. Government acceleration order “request”

e. Contractor preservation of rights



18. Types of Relief

a. Entitlement vs. quantum

b. Time extensions

c. Price increases

d. Release from liability


19. Calculation of Time

a. Sources of data

b. Reasonable time factor

c. “As bid” vs. “as built” charts

d. CPM and other scheduling techniques

e. Concurrent delay calculations

f. Acceleration calculations

g. Measuring effect on progress; examples


20. Disruption/Impact Costs

a. Scope of recovery

b. Types of recoverable costs

c. Applicable contract clauses

d. Reservation of rights to recover

e. Project reporting

f. Documentation

g. Necessary support materials


21. Calculation of Dollars

a. Equitable adjustment principles

b. “Objective” vs. “subjective” adjustments

c. Contractor’s reasonable costs

d. Detailed proof

e. “Jury verdict” proof

f. “Total cost” proof


22. Major Pricing Elements

a. Labor costs

b. Equipment costs

c. Material costs

d. Bonding costs

e. Subcontractor costs, overhead and profit

f. Inefficiency and idle labor factors

g. Cumulative impact

h. Special delay and standby factors

i. Special acceleration factors

j. Cost escalation factors

k. Claims processing costs

l. Overhead — home office and jobsite

m. Profit


23. Deductive Modifications

a. Determining price reduction

b. Unbalanced bidding effects

c. Loss of “learning curve” benefit

d. Unabsorbed overhead

e. Profit adjustment

f. “Truth in Negotiation” requirements


24. Claims Presentation and Defense

a. Contracting Officer, Board and Court

b. Comptroller General

c. Extraordinary relief possibilities

d. Early recognition

e. Documentation required

f. Reservation of rights

g. Claims preparation and certification

h. Necessary elements of proof

i. Claims defense strategies

j. Negotiation factors

k. Settlement considerations


25. Claims Litigation

a. Before the Boards

b. Before the Courts

c. Procedures

d. Strategies


See Individual Courses For Available Credits
Certificates of Completion are provided to all seminar participants who attend Federal Publications Seminars courses following the event, upon request.
CPE: Continuing Professional Education
Field of Study: Specialized Knowledge
Delivery Method: Group-Live Classroom
Federal Publications Seminars is affiliated with West Professional Development and is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website:
For more information regarding administrative policies such as refunds, cancellations and complaints, please contact Federal Publications Seminars at 888.494.3696.
CPE Hours
This program is eligible for: 9.50 (CPE) hours of credit
Program Level: N/A
Program Prerequisite: None
Advance Preparation: None
Method: n/a
CLP: Continuous Learning Points
Approved for CLP by Defense Acquisition University
Defense Acquisition Workforce members must acquire 80 Continuous Learning Points (CLP) every two years from the date of entry into the acquisition workforce for as long as the member remains in an acquisition position per DoD Instruction 5000.66. We will provide you with documentation of points awarded for completing the event.
CLP Hours
This program is eligible for: 8.00 (CLP) hours of credit
CLE: Continuing Legal Education
States have widely varying regulations regarding MCLE credit. LegalEdcenter is an approved provider in AL, AK, AR, CA, GA, IL, ME, MO, MS, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, VI, VT, WA, WI, and WV. Credit may be applied for in other jurisdictions on request and in accordance with state MCLE rules.
Please note that because some states are changing their policy on CLE reporting, you will need to fill out the request for credit from Federal Publications Seminars within 10 business days, or we may not be able to issue credits for the program.
CLE Hours
This program is eligible for: 8.25 (60 minutes), (50 minutes)
No travel information is available at this time
  • 100
    Basic or fundamental subject matter is covered. Courses are geared to general knowledge or can be taken as a refresher.
  • 200
    Specific topics or issues within a topic area are covered. Students should be familiar with terms of art and general concepts concerning the course topic.
  • 300
    Workshops and class discussions cover specific subject matter in-depth, and participation is strongly encouraged. Attendees should have at least 2-3 years' experience in the area of study.
  • 400
    Courses build upon students' knowledge and experience, and cover complex issues within the subject matter. Should have 4-5 years' mastery of subject for in-depth analysis.
  • 500
    Masters-level programs designed for professionals with 5+ years' experience. Courses cover in-depth and technical analysis on specific subjects and updates on current issues.