Legal challenges to procurements conducted by contracting authorities have increased significantly in recent years, particularly since the Remedies Directive came into force in England and Wales. The new Public Contracts Regulations 2015 have introduced many new concepts and as such, the need for contracting authorities and economic operators to fully understand their rights and obligations when involved in procurements is important.
Our extensive procurement expertise and up to date knowledge of both domestic and European legislation together with developing case law in this area enables us to establish whether there has been a breach of the Public Contracts Regulations and/or European Treaty principles and advise you on the best course of action to adopt. We have practical experience of dealing with Court proceedings involving all kinds of procurement challenges, including claims involving allegations of ineffectiveness. We also have vast experience of negotiating settlements in all types of procurement disputes, including through mediation.
We are also very experienced in suggesting strategies for avoiding challenge where there has been some fault or error in procedure, so as to “rescue” the procurement and bring the process to a successful conclusion for all parties' benefits without having to recommence the procurement.
Our focus is achieving our clients’ objectives in the quickest and most cost-effective way possible.
The latest decision to emanate from the procurement litigation between ATK and the NDA, the Supreme Court has ruled on a bidder's discretion to issue a claim within the standstill period and when damages will be recoverable.
On 21 December 2017, the Technology and Construction Court handed down judgment in the case of MLS (Overseas) Limited ("MLS") v Secretary of State for Defence ("the MoD") .
In this case the NDA's failed to award Energy Solutions a contract despite them being the most economically advantageous tenderer. The High Court has delivered a judgment that they are entitled to damages from the NDA.
In a landmark ruling in the context of procurement litigation, the High Court has held that the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority ("NDA") "manipulated" and "fudged" its tender process for a nuclear clean up contract worth in excess of £4 billion.