Inquiries or questions based on alleged patent ambiguity
of the plans, specifications or estimate must be communicated as a bidder inquiry prior to bid opening.
28) If the contract term is a patent ambiguity, then the contractor has a duty to seek clarification from the government prior to submitting its offer; if the contractor fails to seek clarification, then it will be bound by the government's reasonable interpretation of the patent ambiguity.
41) Although normally a contractor would prevail in a case where a court found the government's design specifications defective, in this case, the contractor did not prevail because it failed to seek clarification regarding the patent ambiguity.
Since the contractor "failed to satisfy its duty to inquire about [the] patent ambiguity .
The ultimate question is whether the ambiguity was patent or latent, because a patent ambiguity creates a duty to inquire.
219-4 were mutually inconsistent, resulting in a patent ambiguity.
Had this been the end of the story, it may not have been too difficult to accept the court's holding that the patent ambiguity created a duty for J&H Reinforcing to inquire further.