Our procurement expert, Rhiannon Holtham, takes a look at the reasons for challenging the procurement process, and the potential outcomes. 

If you’re bidding for a public sector contract, and aren’t happy with the contracting authority’s conduct or decision, you might decide to formally challenge it after the procurement process.   

Challenging a procurement process isn’t something to take lightly. Going to the High Court is expensive, and you’re unlikely to recover all of your legal costs, even if your claim is successful.

The Technology and Construction Court – a division of the High Court – has issued a guidance note on procurement cases. It’s set out a pre-action protocol to encourage cases to settle out of court, making litigation a last resort. The note also deals with confidentiality – which you might be concerned about – and Alternative Dispute Resolution options, like mediation.

You don’t have to follow the protocol if you’re bringing a claim, but you should make sure you include it in your pre-action letter to the contracting authority if you do plan to do so.

For further information or advice on challenging the procurement process, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.