Q&As

Are there any circumstances in which it would be necessary to issue a voluntary ex ante transparency notice for a below-threshold public contract awarded under the light touch regime?

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Published on LexisPSL on 03/12/2019

The following Public Law Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Are there any circumstances in which it would be necessary to issue a voluntary ex ante transparency notice for a below-threshold public contract awarded under the light touch regime?
  • Voluntary transparency notice
  • Rules for LTR contracts
  • Additional rules for below-threshold contracts
  • Further reading:

It is assumed that this query relates to a below-threshold public procurement exercise using the light touch regime (LTR) under the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (PCR 2015), SI 2015/102.

Voluntary transparency notice

A voluntary transparency notice may be used by a contracting authority where a public contract has been awarded without prior publication of a contract notice in accordance with PCR 2015, SI 2015/102, Pt 2 (ie a direct award). A contracting authority may opt to publish a voluntary transparency notice in these circumstances in order to prevent or resist a legal challenge on grounds of ineffectiveness under PCR 2015, SI 2015/102, reg 99(2). PCR 2015, SI 2015/102, reg 99(3) provides that the ground of ineffectiveness (for lack of advertisement) will not apply if the contracting authority:

  1. considers the contract award (without prior publication of a contract notice) was permitted under PCR 2015, SI 2015/102, Pt 2

  2. publishes a voluntary transparency notice in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) indicating its intention to enter into the contract (in the prescribed form), and

  3. observes a standstill period of at least ten days beginning with the day after the date the voluntary transparency notice was published in the OJEU

A voluntary transparency notice will only be valid if the contracting authority believes the decision being made does not fall foul of the applicable rules under PCR 2015,

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