Can FAR 52.237-3 Continuity of Service be used as justification to extend a contract period of performance?
The intent of 52.237-3 Continuity of Services is to assist the new contractor or Government to ramp up to speed on performing the work, not to allow the incumbent to continue providing the basic contract services. The prescription allows the use of the clause when the services are vital, the successor has been chosen, and when the transition is expected to be difficult. When those conditions are met, the clause is invoked which requires the incumbent to support the successor in performing the work. Generally speaking the incumbent significantly draws down its workforce and executes the transition plan.
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The question essentially asks if this clause can supersede the 6 month restriction in set forth by FAR 37.111 and the answer is no as the language in that FAR part uses the imperative "shall not" exceed six months. Additionally note that the clause at 52.237-3 extends the services, not the contract period. If additional time beyond the six months is needed, a Justification and Approval will be necessary to support a contract period extension beyond six months.