15 CFR § 700.13 - Acceptance and rejection of rated orders.
(a) Mandatory acceptance.
(2) A person shall not discriminate against rated orders in any manner such as by charging higher prices or by imposing different terms and conditions than for comparable unrated orders.
(b) Mandatory rejection. Unless otherwise directed by Commerce:
(1) A person shall not accept a rated order for delivery on a specific date if unable to fill the order by that date. However, the person must inform the customer of the earliest date on which delivery can be made and offer to accept the order on the basis of that date. Scheduling conflicts with previously accepted lower rated or unrated orders are not sufficient reason for rejection under this section.
(2) A person shall not accept a DO rated order for delivery on a date which would interfere with delivery of any previously accepted DO or DX rated orders. However, the person must offer to accept the order based on the earliest delivery date otherwise possible.
(3) A person shall not accept a DX rated order for delivery on a date which would interfere with delivery of any previously accepted DX rated orders, but must offer to accept the order based on the earliest delivery date otherwise possible.
(4) If a person is unable to fill all the rated orders of equal priority status received on the same day, the person must accept, based upon the earliest delivery dates, only those orders which can be filled, and reject the other orders. For example, a person must accept order A requiring delivery on December 15 before accepting order B requiring delivery on December 31. However, the person must offer to accept the rejected orders based on the earliest delivery dates otherwise possible.
(c) Optional rejection. Unless otherwise directed by Commerce, rated orders may be rejected in any of the following cases as long as a supplier does not discriminate among customers:
(1) If the person placing the order is unwilling or unable to meet regularly established terms of sale or payment;
(2) If the order is for an item not supplied or for a service not performed;
(3) If the order is for an item produced, acquired, or provided only for the supplier's own use for which no orders have been filled for two years prior to the date of receipt of the rated order. If, however, a supplier has sold some of these items, the supplier is obligated to accept rated orders up to that quantity or portion of production, whichever is greater, sold within the past two years;
(5) If acceptance of a rated order or performance against a rated order would violate any other regulation, official action, or order of the Department of Commerce issued under the authority of the Defense Production Act or the Selective Service Act and related statutes [See § 700.75].
(d) Customer notification requirements.
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (d)(2) of this section, a person must accept or reject a rated order in writing (hard copy), or in electronic format, within fifteen (15) working days after receipt of a DO rated order and within ten (10) working days after receipt of a DX rated order. If the order is rejected, the person must give reasons in writing or electronically for the rejection.
(2) If a rated order is placed for the purpose of emergency preparedness requirements and expedited action is necessary or appropriate to meet these requirements and the order includes the statement set forth in § 700.12(b), a person must accept or reject the rated order and transmit the acceptance or rejection in writing or in an electronic format within the time specified in the rated order. The minimum times for acceptance or rejection that such orders may specify are six (6) hours after receipt of the order if the order is issued by an authorized person in response to a hazard that has occurred, or twelve (12) hours after receipt if the order is issued by an authorized person to prepare for an imminent hazard.
(3) If a person has accepted a rated order and subsequently finds that shipment or performance will be delayed, the person must notify the customer immediately, give the reasons for the delay, and advise of a new shipment or performance date. If notification is given verbally, written (hard copy) or electronic confirmation must be provided within one working day of the verbal notice.