We guide our U.S. and foreign clients through the full range of U.S. laws and regulations governing trade in goods and services and transfers of technology in various industries including the automotive, information technology, telecommunications, industrial manufacturing, energy, finance, education, and aerospace and defense sectors. We assist our established company and start-up clients in solving the practical issues as they navigate in the rapidly changing business landscape of the global economy and help them maintain and grow their business through global trade in goods and services. We assist with transactions, investigate potential violations, as well as review and develop compliance policies and conduct compliance training. We also collaborate with our corporate colleagues on M&A deals by conducting pre- and post-acquisition international trade compliance due diligence.
Export controls and OFAC sanctions
We counsel our clients about contemplated transactions for compliance with export controls, including the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce for dual-use items and technology, the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) administered by the U.S. Department of State for defense articles, defense services, and technology, and trade sanctions and embargoes administered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). We advise clients in diverse industries concerning licensing, commodity jurisdiction and commodity classification requests, self-determinations, and export control risk assessments. We tackle the difficult interpretive issues in the ever-changing regulatory landscape as the U.S. government responds to national security and foreign policy concerns and we advise when it makes sense to seek guidance from the government agencies and assist in obtaining this guidance.
Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) National Security Reviews
We counsel our U.S. and foreign clients on corporate transactions and real estate transactions involving foreign direct investment on compliance with the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) regulations collaborating seamlessly with our colleagues in the corporate and real estate practices. We efficiently conduct jurisdictional reviews and lead deals through the CFIUS inbound investment national security review process because CFIUS review is an extension of our work conducting international trade compliance pre-acquisition review of a deal -- we already assess the export control classification profile of a target company that is a critical step for determining whether there needs to be a mandatory CFIUS submission. Such a determination is needed, even if the target company does no exporting. We mitigate potential issues of foreign ownership, control, or influence (FOCI) and prepare declarations and voluntary notices to CFIUS and represent clients throughout the CFIUS review process.
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other anti-bribery laws
We assist clients on a range of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and anti-bribery issues, such as performing due diligence on potential foreign partners, advising on appropriate compliance measures for using agents and representatives abroad, and counseling on gift giving and hospitality expenses.
Customs/Tariff and Forced Labor Supply Chain Compliance
We help our clients with importing into the U.S. We assist clients with customs issues, such as evaluating options and developing strategies to mitigate the effects of tariffs imposed during the U.S.-China trade dispute and otherwise. This work includes reviewing tariff classifications on the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS), reviewing country of origin of imported products, evaluating potential changes to manufacturing processes and product supply chains, evaluating Customs duty preferences, and preparing tariff exclusion requests. We counsel on marking rules and USMCA rules of origin for preferential treatment. We also counsel on forced labor supply chain compliance including compliance with the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA).
We help our clients remain compliant with other U.S. regulations. For example, we counsel on compliance with anti-boycott regulations administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce. These regulations are particularly applicable to business conducted with the Middle East because of the Arab League boycott of Israel.
Investigations, Representation before U.S. Government Agencies
We conduct internal investigations of suspected violations, review compliance policies and make recommendations to mitigate lapses, prepare resulting voluntary disclosures to U.S. government agencies, and represent clients in connection with investigations by U.S. government agencies and enforcement actions:
- the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) about EAR violations;
- the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) about ITAR violations;
- the Office of Foreign Assets Control about OFAC sanctions violations;
- U.S. Customs & Border Protection about Customs violations;
- the Office of Antiboycott Compliance (OAC) regarding Antiboycott Regulations violations;
- the U.S. Census Bureau regarding violations of the Foreign Trade Regulations; and
- the DOJ and SEC regarding FCPA violations working with our white collar practice colleagues as needed on allegations of criminal violations.