On September 30, 2013, the Department of Defense (DOD) published a potentially significant Interim Rule to amend the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations (DFARS)—DFARS Case 2013-D010. This rulemaking brings DOD regulations into line with Congress’ recent expansion of whistleblower protections in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Effective July 1, 2013, that statutory expansion of whistleblower protections: (i) covered, for the first time, employees of subcontractors; (ii) expanded both the scope of alleged violations that a whistleblower could report and the reporting mechanisms; and (iii) clarified the applicable burden of proof.
In terms of client actions, the Interim Rule is effective immediately, and stakeholders may wish to submit formal comments, which are due on or before November 29, 2013. Additionally, stakeholders should be alert to ensure that their internal procedures are sufficient to comply with the new Interim Rule.
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