Default by the Appellant

The Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA) decided this case involving the appeal of Northrop Grumman Corporation, 2017 WL 2962585. The ASBCA is an impartial forum that deals with contract disputes that arise between government contractors and various federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the Central Intelligence Agency.

Contract Disputes Act

The ASBCA operates primarily under the Contract Disputes Act (41 U.S.C. 7101-7109) and the ASBCA Charter. All ASBCA decisions are made pursuant to procedures outlined in the ASBCA Rules. The rules include instructions for contractors to proceed without the representation of a lawyer as well as procedures for expedited hearings.

The ASBCA also supports the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to resolve any and all disputes. The ASBCA has developed an award-winning approach to ADR, helping parties resolve their disputes effectively and efficiently.

Background of a Default by the Appelant 

Northrop Grumman Corporation (Northrop Grumman) won a contract award from the Air Force. The cost-plus-fixed-fee contract called for “Multi-Platform Radar Technology Insertion Program radar system development and demonstration alignment with the Global Hawk Block 40 program schedule.”

The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, located at Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts, was the contracting entity. Funds for this contract came from fiscal years 2013, 2014, and 2015, drawing from research, development, test, and evaluation budgets. While the contract was funded over time incrementally, there was a one-time assignment of $319,615 at the time of contract award.

The total contract value was $1,529,683,365. The timeline for work included an expected completion date of September 30, 2015. Northrop Grumman would perform work under the contract in El Segundo, California.

Sometime after the contract award, a dispute arose concerning this contract. Northrop Grumman appealed to the ASBCA for review and a final determination.

Default by the Appelant Analysis

Before the ASBCA could review this case, the parties were able to resolve the dispute. The ASBCA judge dismissed the appeal with prejudice, in accordance with the ASBCA Charter.

For more insight regarding dismissal with prejudice, we can look to ASBCA Rule 17, which is titled, “Dismissal or Default for Failure to Prosecute or Defend.” According to Rule 17, dismissal with prejudice may be appropriate in cases where there is a “default by the appellant.” Examples of such a default include failure to:

  • “File documents required by these Rules,”

  • “Respond to notices or correspondence from the Board,” or

  • “Comply with orders of the Board.”

Do You Need Legal Advice from an Experienced Government Contracts Law Firm?


Navigating the ins and outs of government contracts can be a challenge. There are various legal regulations and considerations at play, which can make it difficult to understand the proper course of action. But a knowledgeable government attorney can make all of the difference, helping you avoid pitfalls and resolve any issues that might arise.

If you are in need of assistance with government contracts or other related matters, please do not hesitate to contact Whitcomb, Selinsky, PC immediately. You can reach the Denver attorneys at Whitcomb, Selinsky, PC by phone at (303) 534-1958 or online by completing a simple form.

Your call-to-action heading goes in here. Make it a show stopper!

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique.

Download now

Your call-to-action heading goes in here. Make it a show stopper!

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique.

CTA Button

No thanks, we enjoy struggling!

Get this [offer type] for [targeted persona] to solve your [persona's pain point].

Your [pain point] can be solved by our [your methods] covered in this [offer type].

Get your [offer type]

More than 100+ people have downloaded this FREE [content offer] - give them proof!