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Monday, August 11, 2014

Taxpayer funds spared as judge tosses lawsuit from Iraq war contractor KBR

Today's post is shared from the
A federal judge last week tossed out a complaint from wartime contractor KBR, in a case the Justice Department said could have ended up leaving taxpayers on the hook for ever-increasing costs from the war in Iraq.
The more than yearlong dispute centered around how KBR should be paid as the contractor winds down the nearly $38 billion logistics contract used to support troops in Iraq.
KBR wanted to continue billing the government on a cost-reimbursable basis, meaning the company gets paid costs plus a fee as the expenses are incurred. But Army officials want KBR to provide a fixed fee, meaning the company would have to cover costs that exceed that amount.
But Justice Department attorneys noted last year the that case held far broader implications.
“KBR does not deign to address the implication of its position: if the Court accepts KBR’s novel theory, literally tens of thousands of government contracts will be affected, creating enormous uncertainty for the government and contractors alike,” Justice Department attorneys wrote.
In dismissing the case last week, U.S. Federal Claims Court Judge Victor Wolski ruled that the court didn’t have jurisdiction over matters involving contract administration. John Elof, a KBR spokesman, said the company was disappointed in the ruling but would be studying its options. He declined further comment.
The case provided a significant window into the tenuous...
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Jon L. Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author of NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson-Reuters) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson-Reuters). For over 4 decades the Law Offices of Jon L Gelman  1.973.696.7900  have been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.