VA Final Rule Requires Electronic Payment Requests

The Department of Veterans Affairs has finalized, without substantive change, a proposed rule (¶73,010.07) requiring contractors to submit payment requests in electronic form. The rule amends VA’s acquisition regulation to enhance customer service and departmental productivity, and to adopt innovative information technology, including the appropriate use of commercial best practices. The rule adds new VAAR Subpart 832.70, which consists of VAAR 832.7000 through VAAR 832.7002-2. Under VAAR 832.7002, Electronic payment requests, a contractor must submit payment requests in electronic form, unless the contracting officer requires a submission by mail. Purchases paid with a government-wide commercial purchase card are considered to be an electronic transaction for purposes of this provision, and therefore no additional electronic invoice submission is required. VAAR 832.70021, Data transmission, requires the contractor to submit the requests through VA’s Electronic Invoice Presentment and Payment System (see http://www.fsc.va.gov/einvoice.asp), or through a system that conforms to the X12 electronic data interchange formats established by the Accredited Standards Center chartered by the American National Standards Institute. A new clause, VAAR 852.232-72, Electronic submission of payment requests, must be used in all contracts and solicitations. The rule goes into effect December 27, 2012. For the text of this final rule, see ¶73,010.08.