Request by Subcontractor for Reimbursement of Cost of Parts Supplied to Prime Contractor

B-187806: Jan 11, 1979

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A subcontractor requested reimbursement from the government for aircraft frames and engine parts supplied to the prime contractor for use in performance of contracts with the Air Force. The prime contractor failed to pay the subcontractor for approximately $160,000 worth of materials and, although the subcontractor was awarded a judgment against the prime contractor for the amount, the judgment had not been satisfied. The subcontractor requested recommending the claim to Congress for private relief, but GAO found that the amount cannot be recovered because privity had not been established. Reporting the claim to Congress would not be justified, because there are no elements of unusual legal liability or equity, and to do so would constitute preferential treatment over other unpaid creditors who must satisfy their claims in bankruptcy proceedings.