September 25, 2017

Winning the Battle without Losing the War: Partner Milt Johns on Bid Protests

FH+H Partner Milt Johns explored key issues an individual should consider when filing a bid protest during his GOVCON University Lunch Series on Sept.  21 (see full recording here).

“Why protest?”  is the most important question to consider, according to Mr. Johns.

“We probably file one out of every three potential protests that are presented to us by clients,” Mr. Johns said. “The other two-thirds of the time, frankly, we’re focusing on that ‘Why not file?’ issue. What is going to be in the client’s best interest? Sometimes the answer is you’re better off not protesting. We work through those issues with our clients to come to the best decision.”

Mr. Johns also discussed if an individual or business can file a protest without the help of a lawyer.

“The answer is yes, [but] I always say I wouldn’t recommend pulling your own tooth,” Mr. Johns said. “Could you do it? Sure, if you had a handful of aspirin … and a pair of pliers, you could extract a bad tooth. But you probably don’t want to do that.”

Beyond gaining the expertise of a lawyer, Mr. Johns explained working with a law firm to file a bid protest is necessary to access procurement documents.

“Even if you have an in-house attorney … they will not be admitted to the protective order,” Mr. Johns said. “Those documents can’t be shared with the principals.”

To learn about other issues to consider when filing a bid protest, watch Mr. Johns’ full presentation

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