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  • Question

    Is there a policy of directive that "norrows" the definintion of a commercial items? If so, will the tighter definintion affect program execution or be discriminatiors in compeitiions?


    Answer

    FAR Part 2 shows eight ways to define a commercial item. A commercially available off-the-shelf (COTS) item (also defined by FAR Part 2) has a narrower definition, and cannot be physically modified and still be considered a COTS item. Earlier this year DoD proposed removal the "of a type" language from the FAR Part 2 definition for a commercial item. However, I'm not sure that the proposal gained much traction in Congress. Ultimately, it's the Government contracting officer's determination, using his or her knowledge of the supply or service and the commercial item definition in the FAR, whether the requirement can be considered a commercial item. You can also find some guidance in DoD's Commercial Item Handbook.

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