No General Release Exception Without 'Special And Limited' Circumstances

Wednesday, December 27, 2017 9:33 am
January 2018 - Volume 40 Number 1


Appeal of: Washington Star Constr. Co., 2017 ASBCA No. 61065 Lexis 439 (Nov. 14, 2017)

A final release generally bars recovery of claims made after the release has been made---even if you simply forgot about some extra work you performed but didn’t invoice for.

Washington Star Construction Company (Washington Star) performed on a government construction contract in Kabul, Afghanistan from July 2012 until it completed the work in November 2013 and received approximately $375,000 in payment. Two and a half years later, in June 2016, Washington Star filed an appeal with the U.S. Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals for $142,000 for extra work. The Board dismissed because Washington Star hadn’t first submitted a claim to the contracting officer (CO). Washington Star did submit to the CO in January 2017, contending that the CO’s representative directed and approved the work in question and told Washington Star that a modification for $144,000 would be issued. The CO denied the claim.

The contractor once again appealed to the Board. This time, the government filed a motion for summary judgment on the grounds that Washin[..]