Is there a FAR clause/stipulation for a signature to be required by a contractor on a small purchase order for it to be valid?
In Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 13.302-2(a) it says "when it is desired to consummate a binding contract between the parties before the contractor undertakes performance, the contracting officer shall require written acceptance of the purchase order by the contractor." However, this is only done when the contracting officer determines it is necessary to ensure the contractor's compliance with the purchase order or it is required by agency regulations. Generally, the government does not require the contractor to sign a purchase order. The purchase order is an offer to pay the contractor for performance and once they perform this becomes a binding contract so there is no need for them to sign it. In the Department of Defense we typically use the DD 1155 form for purchase orders, see DFARS 213.307, and block 16 can be checked which requires the contractor to sign it if the contracting officer determines it is necessary to ensure performance. This is the government's decision not the contractor's.
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