(a) Agencies may not enforce any QPL, QML, or QBL without first complying with the requirements of 9.202(a). However, qualification requirements themselves, whether or not previously embodied in a in a QPL, QML, or QBL, may be enforced without regard to 9.202(a) if they are in either of the following categories:
(1) Any qualification requirement established by statute prior to October 30,1984, for civilian agencies (not including NASA); or
(2) Any qualification requirement established by statute or administrative action prior to October 19,1984, for DoD or NASA. Qualification requirements established after the above dates must comply with 9.202(a) to be enforceable.
(b) Except when the agency head or designee determines that an emergency exists, whenever an agency elects, whether before or after award, not to enforce a qualification requirement which it established, the requirement may not thereafter be enforced unless the agency complies with 9.202(a).
(c) If a qualification requirement applies, the contracting officer need consider only those offers identified as meeting the requirement or included on the applicable QPL, QML, or QBL, unless an offeror can satisfactorily demonstrate to the contracting officer that it or its product or its subcontractor or its product can meet the standards established for qualification before the date specified for award.
(d) If a product subject to a qualification requirement is to be acquired as a component of an end item, the contracting officer must ensure that all such components and their qualification requirements are properly identified in the solicitation since the product or source must meet the standards specified for qualification before award.
(e) In acquisitions subject to qualification requirements, the contracting officer shall take the following steps:
(1) Use presolicitation notices in appropriate cases to advise potential suppliers before issuing solicitations involving qualification requirements. The notices shall identify the specification containing the qualification requirement and establish an allowable time period, consistent with delivery requirements, for prospective offerors to demonstrate their abilities to meet the standards specified for qualification. The notice shall be publicized in accordance with 5.204. Whether or not a presolicitation notice is used, the general synopsizing requirements of subpart 5.2 apply.
(2) Distribute solicitations to prospective contractors whether or not they have been identified as meeting applicable qualification requirements.
(3) When appropriate, request in accordance with agency procedures that a qualification requirement not be enforced in a particular acquisition and, if granted, so specify in the solicitation (see 9.206-1(b)).
(4) Forward requests from potential suppliers for information on a qualification requirement to the agency activity responsible for establishing the requirement.
(5) Allow the maximum time, consistent with delivery requirements, between issuing the solicitation and the contract award. As a minimum, contracting officers shall comply with the time frames specified in 5.203 when applicable.