Richard Vacura is a partner in the firm's Government Contracts & Public Procurement practice. Mr. Vacura is an experienced trial lawyer who has litigated cases involving major weapons and space systems, software development, communications systems, prime/subcontract disputes, bid protests, injunctive suits, procurement fraud, FOIA actions, and the Federal Tort Claims Act. He has in-depth experience conducting internal investigations involving false claims and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations, and defending suspension and debarment actions.
Mr. Vacura regularly serves as the primary government contracts counsel and transactional attorney to clients that range from start-ups to major public companies, providing due diligence reviews for domestic and foreign acquisitions, drafting and negotiating teaming and joint venture agreements, counseling on novation and assignment issues, technical data and nondisclosure agreements, export control, small business, international anti-corruption, national security, and standard domestic and international solicitations and contract/subcontract terms and conditions.
Mr. Vacura has lectured and conducted seminars on a variety of federal procurement topics for eGov, Federal Publications, the Contract Services Association of America, the Council of Defense & Space Industry Associations, the National Contract Management Association and various Department of Defense organizations.
Mr. Vacura has held leadership positions in the American Bar Association's Public Contract Law Section, including the Contract Claims and Disputes Resolution Committee and the International Procurement Committee. He was named a Top Government Contracts Lawyer by the Washington Business Journal and is recommended as a leading lawyer by Chambers USA, Legal 500 US, and Best Lawyers in America.
Mr. Vacura entered private practice after serving as a major in the U.S. Air Force Judge Advocate General's Department.
Honeywell International Inc. v. United States(USDC, District of Columbia). Representing Honeywell International Inc. in a "reverse" Freedom of Information Act case, seeking to enjoin the Air Force's release of confidential commercial information related to the satellite and space systems control network submitted in a proposal and incorporated into an Air Force contract. (Ongoing, 2009)
PlanetSpace v. United States.Successfully represented Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) in defending its award by NASA of a $3.1 billion contract for launch supply services to Resupply the International Space Station. A disappointed bidder first filed a protest of the contract award at the Government Accountability Office, and then filed an action at the Court of Federal Claims challenging NASA's decision to override the automatic stay of performance imposed by the Competition in Contracting Act. Both actions by the protester were unsuccessful. (2009)
Navy v. Northrop Grumman Corp.(Federal Circuit Court of Appeals). Successfully represented Northrop Grumman Corporation in the Navy's appeal of a favorable decision by the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals, involving $30 million in breach of warranty claims related to the Navy's SQQ-89 antisubmarine warfare system. The case below included extensive motion practice, discovery on numerous technical issues, and a three-week trial involving multiple experts and numerous fact witnesses. (2007)
Fortune 500 CompanyWe represent a large multinational Fortune 500 company in an extensive internal investigation and in the DoD/DoJ Voluntary Disclosure Program related to contract noncompliance allegations and potentially involving False Claims Act violations and procurement fraud. (ongoing)
Japanese Equipment Manufacturer(U.S. Department of State/METI) Successfully represented a Japanese manufacturer of precision equipment in an internal investigation into allegations of violation of company rules and applicable U.S. export rules and regulations by the company's Singapore subsidiary. We were able to obtain a favorable result for the client with respect to sanctions imposed by a U.S. government agency. (2008)
SI International, Inc. Acquisition by Serco.Along with the Corporate Practice Group, represented SI International, Inc., in its acquisition by Serco Inc., a U.S.-based subsidiary of leading international service company Serco Group plc. for an aggregate purchase price of approximately $520-million. The acquisition involved regulatory approval by the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS), as well as national security issues. (2008)
Mr. Vacura is named a Leading Lawyer in Government Contracts by Chambers USA (2008 – 2018), has been named to Best Lawyers in America (2013 – 2018), and a Client Choice Award winner. In 2018, he was recommended by Legal 500 US for government contracts. He has also been named a Top Government Contracts Lawyer by the Washington Business Journal, recognized in Who’s Who Legal 2016 for Public Procurement and was named a BTI Client Service All-Star MVP, nominated by clients and selected for consistent outstanding client service.
2018 Chambers USA listed Mr. Vacura as a leading lawyer: Richard Vacura is a longstanding figure in the government contracts market. He has a wealth of experience representing clients in the aerospace, defense and government services sectors. Sources describe him as "dignified, studious and very articulate."
2017 Chambers USA listed Mr. Vacura as a leading lawyer: Richard Vacura is regarded by sources as ‘a very strong lawyer’ and a ‘knowledgeable resource.’ Clients further describe him as ‘a levelheaded, calm and sound thinker.’ He is sought out by contractors in the defense, aerospace and IT industries to handle high-stakes litigation and internal investigations.
2016 Chambers USA listed Mr. Vacura as a leading lawyer: The “excellent” Richard Vacura of Morrison & Foerster LLP has deep experience in government contracts disputes and compliance matters. A source describes him as “very timely, very experienced and very knowledgeable,” while another comments: “He has always impressed me as a fine lawyer who represents his clients well.”
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