Bid Protests Go Online – and Include a Filing Fee


The Government Accountability Office plans to launch an Electronic Bid Protest Docketing System on May 1st , where you can securely file protests to federal contract awards.

In the past, bid protests have been free, but the new system will charge a $350 filing fee, intended to recoup the cost of building the new system.


A bid protest is a challenge to the terms of a solicitation, or to the award of a contract.

Protests may be filed against federal government agencies, but cannot be filed against non-federal government agencies, such as state or local governments.

Only “interested parties” may file protests – that is, a potential bidder who challenges the terms of a solicitation, or an actual bidder who was not awarded the contract.

Protests challenging the terms of a solicitation must be filed before bid due date.  A protest challenging the award of a contract must be filed within 10 calendar days. Regulations regarding the timely filing of protests depend on the circumstances of each case, and are strictly enforced.


For more information, see Bid Protests at GAO: a Descriptive Guide.

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