Performance : Monitor Costs and Payments : Payments to Consultants

Payments to Consultants

The CM is responsible to ensure that the consultant's invoice is reviewed, approved, and sent to HQ Accounting for payment in a timely fashion. The CM gets assistance from the:

  • Task order manager to review invoices for consistency with work provided and approve
  • District CSU to prepare the invoice for submittal to HQ Accounting

HQ Accounting is responsible to:

  1. Verify that the payment can be made against the contract.
  2. Update the contract payment database (EFIS).
  3. Send the information to the State Controller.

The State Controller is responsible to get a check to the consultant.

The CM, HQ Accounting and the State Controller all have a responsibility to track consultant payments. How consultants are paid depends on the type of contract, the SOW, and even the contract duration.

Payment Method Description
Lump sum

Consultant is paid one lump sum after you accept the final completed work; used for fixed price contracts.

Progress payments

Consultant submits invoices on scheduled dates, such as when a certain percentage of the work is complete or a milestone is reached. Progress payments are not allowed on a contract with a term of less than three months.

Some portion of the final payment may be withheld until the contract is closed. According to the Public Contract Code, progress payments on service contracts and non-A&E consultant contracts cannot exceed 90% of the total contract amount. In addition, Caltrans must retain at least 10% of each invoice amount and hold that money until the consultant satisfactorily completes the entire contract. For example, if the consultant invoices $1500, Caltrans withholds $150 from the payment of that invoice. The consultant will receive that $150 after the CM approves the consultant's final invoice for the contract. This method of contract retention is not allowed on any contracts that include any federal funding.

Hourly rate

Depending on the contract, consultants can invoice straight hourly rates or burdened hourly rates. A burdened rate includes overhead and other indirect costs.

For service contracts, the consultant is paid no more often than monthly, upon receipt of an itemized invoice which details the number of hours worked, the hourly rate, and the service provided. This method, which is standard for most A&E contracts, is usually called "specific rate of compensation."

Monthly rate

Consultants submit invoices monthly and are paid a monthly rate. For example, consultants providing janitorial services, roadside rest stop trash pickup, rental of office equipment, and rental of non-operated highway equipment are often paid a monthly rate.

No matter which payment method is used, if prevailing wages are required, all invoices must include certified payroll and fringe benefit statements for each employee performing prevailing wage work. The contract manager is responsible to verify that contract employees are being paid the appropriate prevailing wage.