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    Hello, According to FAR, can you modify a contract past the expiration date? I believe the answer is yes because when you close out a contract you have 6 months to collect evidence of contract's physical completion. Thus, a contract modification can be done after the expiratoin date. Would that be correct? Please provide a FAR reference. Your answer is greatly appreciated. Thank you, Arina


    Answer

    Normally contracts to not specify an expiration date.  Instead, DFARS 204.7104-1 b.(2) says:
    “Each separately identified contract subline item shall have its own—
    (i) Delivery schedule, period of performance, or completion date;”
     
    As we know, prior to the latest delivery or completion date, there are times where the contract schedule will get extended such as when we are exercising an option or making an equitable adjustment for government delay.
     
    The authority to modify a contract after the completion date is inherent in certain activities that may have to be accomplished.  For example, FAR 4.804-5 a.(15) states that contract funds may have to be deobligated after contract funds review is completed.
     

    Another example is at FAR 52-216-16(e) Contract modification says:  “The total final price of the items specified in paragraph (a) of this clause shall be evidenced by a modification to this contract, signed by the Contractor and the Contracting Officer.”
     
    In addition, after the latest delivery or completion date, some actions may still need to be accomplished to fulfill the terms of the contract, some of which could require a contract modification.
     
    Last but not least, remember that the FAR doesn’t always tell you what you can do or need to do.  Sometimes you have to refer to FAR 1.102 -- Statement of Guiding Principles for the Federal Acquisition System:
    “(d) The role of each member of the Acquisition Team is to exercise personal initiative and sound business judgment in providing the best value product or service to meet the customer’s needs. In exercising initiative, Government members of the Acquisition Team may assume if a specific strategy, practice, policy or procedure is in the best interests of the Government and is not addressed in the FAR, nor prohibited by law (statute or case law), Executive order or other regulation, that the strategy, practice, policy or procedure is a permissible exercise of authority.”

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