public procurement

New Public Procurement Law: Mediation and conciliation at the Court of Arbitration at the General Counsel to the Republic of Poland—good or bad solution?

Under the proposed new Public Procurement Law, in the event of a dispute involving performance of a public contract, amicable resolution of the dispute would be handled by the Court of Arbitration at the General Counsel to the Republic of Poland. But the proposal generates legal doubts.

Public procurement deadlines must be realistic

Terms of reference should set contract performance deadlines that are possible to keep for completion of the contract and individual stages. It is better to specify these periods in years, months and days than as a specific date. However, if the contracting authority set specific dates which became impossible to meet after submission of the bids, it should modify them accordingly when signing the contract, reflecting the amount of time taken into account by contractors at the stage of submission of bids.

Substitute performance and party substitution in a public procurement contract

A party substitution in a contract concluded under the Public Procurement Law is possible if the contracting authority explicitly provided for the possibility of such a change in the contract announcement and specified the conditions for such a change. Whether a contractual provision authorising the contracting authority to entrust the performance of the contract to a third party (substitute performance) can be regarded as a review clause allowing for party substitution is an interesting issue in public procurement practice.

Can a bid be selected when it is no longer binding?

If a contractor does not agree to extension of the binding period of its offer when requested by the contracting authority, the bid is rejected. However, the effects of expiration of the binding period are unclear when the contractor fails to extend the period at its own initiative. The current wording of the Public Procurement Law does not specify whether the contractor’s bid remains valid after the binding period expires.

Is subcontracting easier? The effects of the amendment of Art. 647¹ of the Civil Code two years after adoption

Art. 647¹ of the Civil Code, providing for the investor’s secondary liability for the contractor’s debts to subcontractors, was introduced into the Polish legal system in 2003. In April 2017, the parliament amended it thoroughly in adopting the Act Amending Certain Acts to Facilitate Debt Recovery. Two years after implementation, we try to answer the question whether the title of the amending act corresponds to reality and subcontractors really have a better chance of receiving payment for their work.

Settlements with subcontractors in public procurement

The Public Procurement Law provides for rules autonomous from the Civil Code for settlements with subcontractors. The regulations apply independently of each other, but they are applied in parallel to contracts concluded under the public procurement regime.