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Part Number: 601

Department of State Acquisition Regulation

601.602-3 Ratification of unauthorized commitments.

601.602-3 Ratification of unauthorized commitments.

(b) Policy.

(1) The Government generally is not bound by unauthorized commitments. Unauthorized commitments violate the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act, other Federal laws, the FAR, the DOSAR, and proper acquisition practice. Therefore, such unauthorized commitments are serious violations that could result in disciplinary action against the transgressor, e.g., withdrawal of a contracting officer's warrant or a Contracting Officer's Representative delegation or collection action.


(i) Unauthorized commitments not exceeding $1,000. The head of the contracting activity is delegated the authority to serve as the ratifying official for unauthorized commitments not exceeding $1,000, including unauthorized commitments from other agencies where a DOS employee serves as the contracting officer for that action. The head of the contracting activity may refer any actions not exceeding $1,000 to the DOS Procurement Executive for ratification if he or she so chooses.

(ii) Unauthorized commitments exceeding $1,000. All DOS unauthorized commitments in excess of $1,000 shall be submitted to the DOS Procurement Executive for ratification. Unauthorized commitments in excess of $1,000 from other agencies may be referred to the other agency's representative at post for resolution in accordance with that agency's ratification process.

(3) Claims. Unauthorized contractual commitments that would involve claims subject to resolution under the Contracts Dispute Act of 1978 shall be processed in accordance with FAR subpart 33.2 and subpart 633.2.

(4) Disciplinary action. The Procurement Executive may refer egregious cases of unauthorized commitments to HR/ER for possible disciplinary action in accordance with 3 FAM 4370 or 3 FAM 4540. Examples might include repeated unauthorized commitments knowingly made by an employee; failure to take responsibility for a deliberate unauthorized commitment; or similar reasons. The Procurement Executive may revoke the appointment certificate of any contracting officer who makes an unauthorized commitment. The Procurement Executive may direct a contracting officer to revoke the appointment memorandum of a Contracting Officer's Representative or Government Technical Monitor who makes an unauthorized commitment.