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What is a Teaming Agreement?
A teaming agreement is a legal contract entered into by a government contractor and another party. These agreements are very common in government related contracting and are used by contractors who want to find work with partners that can increase the effectiveness of their job(s). Teaming agreements are regulated by the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR).
Read this material if you are interested in learning more about teaming agreements.
Pros and Cons of Teaming Agreements
Teaming agreements can be extremely beneficial for some contractors but can also have negative elements depending on the situation. Below are some pros and cons of teaming agreements:
Pros of a Teaming Agreement
- Allows a contractor to build a team by partnering with an individual or firm that can contribute their resources, skills, and knowledge in a particular area.
- Teaming agreement parties are pretty much obligated to perform the work they agree upon with one another without worrying about any other employee being brought into the picture for the same job.
- The parties to the agreement can add as many means for termination sections to the contract as they feel are appropriate.
- Individuals or companies are able to bring their diversity and differing mindsets to the table to get a job done without having to work for the same entity right off the bat.
- The contractors are asked to provide an estimate for what the costs will end up being upfront so that risks are minimized.
- As long as subcontracting laws are followed the teaming agreement parties will not be viewed as affiliates so small business rules will not be of concern for the temporary workers.
Cons of a Teaming Agreement
- The sections need to be very carefully written or they otherwise may not have legal standing in the event one of the teammates wants to dispute a matter in court. There have been prior incidents where this happened and the court found that certain parts of the agreement were not enforceable.
- The agreements typically only apply to one project or group of tasks making it necessary to renegotiate every time a new job is proposed. This means that each time a new agreement is put into place a new teaming agreement will need to be discussed and put into writing.
- A subcontractor who was hired by the main (prime) contractor may not come to agreeable terms which can make the process difficult.
- If a contractor other than the main one becomes part of the team to complete certain work and does not do too great of a job the blame will fall on the prime contractor since this individual is the only person contracted with the government.
To get a better idea of the positive and negative sides of a teaming agreement you can view this article .
Key Terms in a Teaming Agreement - Checklist
The checklist below is a guide for what key topics you should include in a teaming agreement for completeness and effectiveness:
- Purpose - a clearly explained goal with the reason for establishing a partnership to accomplish it.
- Duration - state how long the job will last and what the anticipated start and finish dates are.
- Scope of work - describe in detail what each party will be expected to do and what milestones exist for completion of selected tasks.
- Pay schedule - state what payments will be made to who and when.
- Exclusive relationship - add a part in the agreement that leaves no room for confusion about whether the same contract is allowed to be worked on elsewhere with someone different.
- Proposal fees and charges - mention how the proposal costs will be paid and who will pay for what.
- Privacy - add notes stating if anything will not be considered confidential information and can be shared or vice versa.
- Legal components - identify and make known all the laws, regulations, and compliance aspects that apply to the teaming agreement members and share how or where they will be used if a reason arises.
- Insurance - include a section that specifies who will be responsible for work related insurance as well as all details surrounding it such as the total cost and types of coverage.
- Liability limitations - if there will be limits as to the liability that can be placed on one or more team members then this section should be attached to the agreement with specifics on the extent and type of limitations.
- Tax costs - note the amount of taxes and which ones each party will pay and state what penalties one will face if they do not pay as required.
- Assignments - this section should be visible in the agreement so that no one is left wondering whether duties set out can be assigned out.
Visit this webpage to learn more about what to include in a teaming agreement.
Teaming Agreements vs. Joint Ventures
A joint venture differs from a teaming agreement because it involves two or more companies who create a totally separate legal business to assume position as a prime contractor. Members of the joint venture have similar levels of control, liability, and profits.
On the other hand, a teaming agreement consists of only one prime contractor who maintains control over a subcontractor who does not share the same level of responsibility for performance, profit, direction, or liability.
Read this article for a detailed description of teaming agreements compared to joint venture agreements.
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Teaming Agreement vs. Subcontract
A teaming agreement is a legally binding agreement between a prime contractor who coordinates directly with a government contact opposed to a subcontractor who is actually monitored and taken on by the prime contractor. A subcontractor does not have any connection to the government partner like the prime contractor does. Primary differences of the two contracting types are displayed below:
- A GSA schedule must exist and the business or individual must be registered with the federal system known as SAM.
- Responsibilities are determined based on what is in the agreement.
- The government can be directly contacted for work being performed.
- Payments are made based on the rate listed in the agreement, an order, or the GSA schedule.
- Work can be completed in full due to the team efforts of all parties connected to the teaming agreement.
- No GSA or SAM registration is required.
- Responsibilities are agreed upon but the subcontractor is not held accountable for insufficient work.
- The subcontractor cannot interact directly with the government and any questions or concerns must go through the prime contractor.
- Payments are made in line with the GSA schedule after any relevant subtractions are made.
- Supplies and services may be limited based on relying on only the prime contractor and not having a larger enterprise.
Examples of When to Use a Teaming Agreement
You should use a teaming agreement under the following circumstances:
- You as a prime government contractor are seeking a subcontractor to perform a specific task under your direction that is aligned with an active federal contract.
- You and other contractors involved want to bring your skillsets together to find a total solution and have numerous resources at your fingertips.
- You want to boost your competition and reputation as a contractor by working with others who are highly regarded.
- You want to possibly become part of a master teaming agreement that will allow you to broaden the duration and scope of your federal contract.
Get Help with a Teaming Agreement
If you believe a teaming agreement is right for you then you should reach out to a knowledgeable government contracts lawyer who specializes in reviewing and writing them. Post a project in ContractsCounsel’s marketplace to get free bids from vetted lawyers to draft or review a teaming agreement.
Meet some of our Teaming Agreement Lawyers
I have practiced law in foreign jurisdiction for more than 11 years and more than one year in Texas. I am Texas licensed attorney. Practice areas include Corporate: incorporation of business entities, drafting of operating agreements, by-laws, and business contracts; Commercial: business disputes, demand letters, cease and desist lettera, dealing with insurance companies, negotiations, settlements of disputes, commercial real estate, and business litigation Litigation: business disputes, personal injury, civil rights, cross-border matters, maritime matters, drafting of litigation pleadings, motion practice, legal research, white-collar defense.
Mr. LaRocco's focus is business law, corporate structuring, and contracts. He has a depth of experience working with entrepreneurs and startups, including some small public companies. As a result of his business background, he has not only acted as general counsel to companies, but has also been on the board of directors of several and been a business advisor and strategist. Some clients and projects I have recently done work for include a hospitality consulting company, a web development/marketing agency, a modular home company, an e-commerce consumer goods company, an online ordering app for restaurants, a music file-sharing company, a company that licenses its photos and graphic images, a video editing company, several SaaS companies, a merchant processing/services company, a financial services software company that earned a licensing and marketing contract with Thomson Reuters, and a real estate software company.
We are a boutique legal practice focused on media, fintech and international trade and have significant experience of advising on high value matters in these areas and delivering results. We advise start-ups, established businesses and professionals on a wide range of commercial and corporate arrangements, not only in the UK, but also in the European Union, United States and Latin America.
Talin has over a decade of focused experience in business and international law. She is fiercely dedicated to her clients, thorough, detail-oriented, and gets the job done.
Former litigation attorney, current owner and co-founder of a documentary and scripted film and television production company. Well versed in small business foundation, entertainment and IP-related issues, as well as general business contracts.
I have been practicing law for more than 4 years at a small firm in York County, Maine. I recently decided to hang my shingle, Dirigo Law LLC. My practice focuses mostly on Real Estate / Corporate transactions, Wills, Trusts, and Probate matters.
Tim has 20 years of experience representing a wide variety of emerging and established companies in the technology, software, bitcoin and professional services industries. He works directly with his clients’ executives and boards of directors on corporate, intellectual property, and securities law issues. Recently, Tim has advised clients on Series A and Series B financings, corporate structuring, complex video licensing agreements, and structuring new hedge funds. Tim previously served as Forrester Research, Inc.’s General Counsel and Secretary where he was chief legal officer, led the company’s legal group, and managed the company’s legal and regulatory affairs. Tim played an integral role in the company’s initial public offering in 1997 and coordinated its secondary offering in 2000. He directed the legal process in the company’s acquisitions of Giga Information Group, Inc., Fletcher Research and Forit GmbH and oversaw over $125million in transactions. He also managed the company’s intellectual property assets. Tim is admitted to practice in Massachusetts and New York. Tim holds a Juris Doctor degree from the Boston College Law School and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Trinity College