Michael E. Barnicle provides a full range of litigation, compliance and corporate transactional services on virtually every facet of government contracting and international trade including industrial security and cybersecurity matters.

Mr. Barnicle represents federal government contractors relative to aerospace, national defense, homeland security, cybersecurity, information security, legislative affairs, foreign military sales and international trade matters. He assists clients throughout the US, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Mr. Barnicle is recurrently called upon to advise upon matters arising in conflict and disaster areas.

After law school and prior to entering private practice, Mr. Barnicle served as a government contracts attorney in the US Army Judge Advocate General's (JAG) Corps that included a combat tour in Iraq as a strategic legal advisor to senior military and other government officials. Due to his government-military experience, Mr. Barnicle possesses unique insight into the complex government contracting and acquisition processes that allows him to anticipate issues, assess litigation risk and develop practical solutions.

Mr. Barnicle's experience includes assisting clients with all aspects of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), contract-related statutes and federal agency policies involving services and supplies vital to national defense and infrastructure. Mr. Barnicle handles complex, high-stakes bid protests and contract appeals cases. Mr. Barnicle also represents government contractors before federal agencies and various federal district courts throughout the country. Mr. Barnicle also oversees and implements various government contract compliance audits, systems and investigations.

Federal government agencies routinely ask Mr. Barnicle to speak at internal government conferences regarding industry perspectives relative to various aspects of federal government contracting. Mr. Barnicle is also very active in, and provides pro bono services to, the military veterans community. In 2007, he co-founded the John Marshall Law School Veterans Legal Support Center & Clinic in Chicago.

Prior to earning his JD in 2008 from the John Marshall Law School, Mr. Barnicle graduated with a BA in political science, with distinction, in 2004 from the University of Kansas. Mr. Barnicle also studied numerous government contracting and national security matters at the US Army Judge Advocate General's School in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Areas of Practice

  • Government Contracts Counseling and Compliance: Contract formation, contract administration, subcontracting, government audits and investigations, cybersecurity/information security, industrial security/classified contracting, cost accounting, procurement fraud (suspension and debarment), Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) intellectual property and data protection rights, capital markets transactions, mergers and acquisitions, assignment and novation, regulatory issues, foreign military sales and more.
  • Government Contracts Claims and Litigation: Contract claims and appeals, suspension and debarment, obtaining contract payment, non-appropriated fund activities, requests for equitable adjustment (REA), contract modifications and extensions, regulatory compliance, research and development agreements, indefinite delivery – indefinite quantity (IDIQ) award and order issues, engineering and procurement agreements, basic ordering agreement issues (BOA), false claims, security cooperation, changes in work or scope, grants, cooperative agreements and subcontractor claims
  • Cybersecurity and Information Security Counseling and Compliance: Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC), Federal Information Security Modernization Act (FISMA), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) and Special Publications.
  • Bid Protests: Requests for proposals, requests for quotations, past performance evaluations, solicitation ambiguities, cost/price evaluations, meaningful discussions, technical evaluations, sole source determinations, Competition in Contracting Act (CICA) performance stays and overrides, organizational conflicts of interest and unduly restrictive statements of work.
  • International Trade: Export controls (EAR and ITAR), trade and economic sanctions (OFAC), anti-boycott controls, licensing, enforcement actions and governmental audits, internal investigations and compliance audits, disclosures, classification, encryption, compliance due diligence in mergers and acquisitions and other cross-border transactions, and on the design, implementation, and administration of compliance programs.
  • Procurement and Appropriations Law: Antideficiency Act, government appropriations, national defense authorization acts, public private partnerships, Economy Act transactions, property disposition and transfer, federal funding types and sources, funding limits, continuing resolutions and the use of appropriated/non-appropriated funds


  • JD, The John Marshall Law School, 2008
  • BA, with distinction, University of Kansas, 2004
  • Illinois
  • District of Columbia
Government & Military Service
  • US Army Judge Advocate General's Corps, Government Contracts Trial Attorney, Washington, DC (2012–14); Government Contracts Attorney Advisor, Baghdad, Iraq (2011); Government Contracts Attorney Advisor, Ft. Bragg, North Carolina (2009–2010)
  • US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division, Chicago, Judge Charles P. Kocoras
  • Co-Founder and Advisory Board Member, John Marshall Law School Veterans Legal Support Center & Clinic (2007–present)
  • Member, University of Kansas, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences Dean’s Advisory Board
  • Member, Chicago Council of 100
  • Member, Boards of Contract Appeals Bar Association
  • Member, Illinois State Bar Association
  • Co-Leader, National Veterans Legal Clinic Coalition (2015–16)
  • Planner, American Bar Association National Legal Network for Military and Veterans, Their Families and Caregivers (2015–16)
  • Member, American Bar Association, Public Contract Law Section; Military and Veterans Affairs Liaison (2015–present); Vice Chair, Construction Division (2014–16)

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