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Fundamentals of Federal Real Estate Leasing

(952 reviews)

Produced on April 07, 2017

$ 79 Contract, Real Estate, Administrative, and Government Contracting In Stock
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Course Information

Time 1h 32m
Difficulty Beginner

Course Description

In any given year, the federal government occupies hundreds of millions of square feet of leased space to house over a million federal employees. While the amount of government space has been on a gentle decline for the past few years as the government seeks to “reduce the footprint,” there are still enormous opportunities in the federal space, and the federal government continues to be the largest single lessee of space in the United States. Plus, government tenants are backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government, which can make government agencies desirable and attractive tenants.

However, leasing to the federal government is not without its risks and complications. Federal government leases are government contracts, and the federal government attaches a number of requirements and conditions through the contracting process. Commercial landlords may be unfamiliar with a number of these government - specific requirements. Similarly, the government has its own processes for awarding leases, resolving disputes during the term of the lease and addressing the sale of an asset with a government lease that will likely be foreign to commercial real estate practitioners.

Additionally, the austerity measures adopted by the government in an attempt to rein in costs have led to a smaller universe of government leases. This, in turn, has led to increased competition for a piece of the shrinking government leasing business. In this atmosphere of increased competition, contracting officers have become more sophisticated and discerning in their procurement decisions. How, then, should landlords approach government leasing in this environment of heightened scrutiny and competition?

This course is designed to act as a primer for those new to government leasing, as well as a resource for more experienced federal real estate practitioners and government contracting officers or leasing specialists. Join Holland & Knight attorneys Robert C. “Bob” MacKichan, Jr. and Gordon Griffin, co-authors of Federal Government Real Estate Leasing, as they talk through the basics of federal leasing and the more common pitfalls of dealing with the government.   

Learning Objectives:
  1. Develop a basic understanding of the federal procurement process and how the government awards leases
  2. Recognize the differences between a typical commercial lease and a government lease, to include the most common GSA leasing provisions
  3. Understand the claims process and the landlord’s rights to pursue litigation at the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and the Boards of Contract Appeals

Credit Information

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Robert MacKichan

Holland & Knight LLP

Robert "Bob" C. MacKichan Jr. is a partner in Holland & Knight's Washington, D.C., office and is the leader of the firm's GSA Leasing and Federal Real Estate Team within the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Practice. His multifaceted practice involves decades of experience in litigation, government contracts, real estate and public policy issues associated with federal government real estate. Clients call on him for his substantive knowledge and extensive relationships in D.C. to handle government real estate disputes, government contract concerns, government lease procurement and administration, real estate acquisition and disposition, and government construction and administration. In addition, he advises clients on holdovers and condemnations, the competitive procurement process and disputes under the Contract Disputes Act.

Mr. MacKichan primarily represents building owners, real estate developers, REITs and asset managers nationwide in matters relating to federal real estate disputes. He previously served as general counsel of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), where his work included the authorization for the construction of the International Cultural and Trade Center Building (now named the Ronald Reagan Federal Building) in Washington, D.C., as well as the utilization of public bond financing for several GSA projects.


  • University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, J.D.
  • University of the Pacific, B.A.

Bar Admissions

  • California
  • District of Columbia

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims

Honors & Awards

  • The Best Lawyers in America guide, Litigation - Real Estate, Real Estate Law, 2008-2017


  • Journal of Government Leasing and Government Leasing News, Board of Advisors, Member

Gordon Griffin

Holland & Knight

Gordon N. Griffin is a Washington, D.C., litigation attorney practicing in both federal real estate and government contracts. Mr. Griffin represents building owners, real estate developers, real estate investment trusts (REITs) and asset managers nationwide in matters relating to general services administration (GSA) lease negotiation and administration, as well as federal real estate disputes. He advises federal real estate clients on U.S. government procurement practices and lease disputes under the Contract Disputes Act.

Mr. Griffin also works with government contractors, and he regularly counsels clients on federal acquisition regulations (FAR), defense federal acquisition regulations (DFAR) and contract compliance. He represents clients in bid protests at the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, and litigates on behalf of clients at the various Boards of Contract Appeals. He counsels clients on all aspects of the government contracting programs offered by the Small Business Administration (SBA), as well as teaming agreements, data rights and intellectual property in government contracts.

Prior to joining Holland & Knight, he spent several years at a large international law firm where he focused on government contracts. He also clerked for Chief Judge Jamie Baker at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.

Before becoming an attorney, Mr. Griffin spent 11 years in the U.S. Marine Corps as a fighter pilot flying F/A-18 “Hornets,” and deploying in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Mr. Griffin remains active in the military and veterans communities, with a pro bono practice centered on representing veterans at the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. 


  • Georgetown University Law Center, LL.M., honors with distinction
  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D.
  • Emory University, B.A., Mathematics; Economics

Bar Admissions

  • New York
  • District of Columbia

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans' Claims

Honors & Awards

  • Truman Fellow at the Truman National Security Project, 2010-2011
  • Georgetown University Law Center: Dean's List, 2012


Daniel L.

Very interesting. Good stuff to know. Even if not your practice area you at least know what questions to ask up front and issues to look out for.

Kenneth D.

written materiel was informative and followed the course well.

William S.

Excellent overview of practical lessor considerations

Christa J.

Excellent presentation.

Andrea W.

Very interesting.

Matthew J.

Great presentation

John D.

very in depth analysis of the Gov lease area

Max S.

Excellent program - thorough, detailed, lots of “tips’”from real experts.

Kamran M.

great presentation of a complicated topic.

Marc Z.

Very informed;great interaction and complementary styles with a dry subject. Very intelligent too!

Socrates K.

Good topic, with good commentary. Thank you.

Stephen E.

Great practical advice.

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