Export Controls (U.S.)

Our International Trade Group advises clients on the full range of U.S. export control laws, regulations, and policies. We counsel clients on all aspects of compliance with the export and reexport rules of the EAR, ITAR, BATFE and NRC/DOE; including obtaining licenses where necessary and in respect of sophisticated items destined for sensitive countries and regions. We work closely with clients to craft solutions to problems involving antiboycott compliance; classification of goods, software, and technology; sector-specific export controls (e.g., proliferation of nuclear, chemical, biological and missile technology); and short supply controls on exports of crude petroleum and petroleum products. We are experienced in assisting clients with their challenges involving complicated regulatory structures such as deemed exports, encryption, new technology controls and the fundamental research rule.

Our International Trade Group works with companies to develop export control compliance and training programs that allow the companies to implement a comprehensive yet manageable approach to compliance that fits their business needs. We also provide companies with due diligence systems reviews and compliance audits, both in their regular operations and when involved in major acquisitions.

In addition to advice and counseling, we regularly represent U.S. and non-U.S. companies in civil and criminal export enforcement actions brought by the U.S. Department of Justice; U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security Office of Export Enforcement and Office of Antiboycott Compliance; Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls; and Department of Homeland Security.

Below is a representative list of our recent work in assisting and representing companies in U.S. export control matters:

  • Assisting international telecommunications company with encryption control compliance in the development of new software products
  • Conducted pre-closing trade compliance diligence review and led post-closing trade compliance systems integration effort in merger of two major multinational oilfield services companies
  • Counseling international aircraft leasing companies on compliance with U.S. export controls related to the operation, sale and lease of commercial aircraft, developed compliance programs specific to aircraft leasing
  • Conducted comprehensive review of technology at all U.S. facilities of major U.S. specialty chemicals company to assess compliance with U.S. technology “deemed export” controls applicable to technology releases to foreign nationals in the U.S. and compliance with visa form I-129 export certification requirements
  • Obtained U.S. Commerce Department export licensing for large chemicals company for export of technology and software for the construction of production facilities in Thailand and China
  • Advised specialty biopharmaceutical company on the import and export requirements for pharmaceuticals in connection with product shipments to over 50 jurisdictions around the world; provided training sessions on U.S. export controls to legal and compliance personnel
  • Obtained a favorable settlement for a large aerospace company in the voluntary disclosure to the State Department of a number of exports/reexports of hardware and/or technology
  • Defended a large chemical company in connection with the export of EAR-controlled chemicals to various destinations
  • Obtained a favorable resolution of an enforcement case involving exports and reexports of EAR-controlled items by a U.S. telecommunications company
  • Defended client in the petroleum industry in connection with investigations of exports of products subject to EAR short-supply controls
  • Obtained a favorable settlement for a large U.S. manufacturer of GPS equipment in connection with voluntary disclosure of potential violations of the ITAR

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Lack of Familiarity with US Sanctions Results in Steel Manufacturer Settling with OFAC for Apparent Violations

Client Updates

On April 19, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) announced the entry into a $435,003 settlement with Alliance Steel, Inc. (“Alliance”), a fully integrated manufacturer of metal building systems, structural steel, and components headquartered in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, for 61 apparent violations of the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations (“ITSR”), mainly resulting from the Company’s lack of understanding as to the application of U.S. sanctions laws to its isolated international activity.

U.S. Customs Expands Enforcement Against Forced Labor Imports with Seizure of Malaysian PPE

Client Updates

On March 29, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) announced that it will begin seizing imports of certain disposable gloves manufactured by Top Glove Corp. Bhd. (“Top Glove”), the world’s leading producer of disposable rubber gloves based in Malaysia, upon determining that sufficient evidence exists to support a finding that Top Glove is manufacturing the products with the use of convict, forced, or indentured labor.1

Incorrect Export Licensing Determinations Result in Wireless Telecommunications Equipment Manufacturer Settling with BIS for Apparent Export Control Violations

Client Updates

On March 19, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (“BIS”) announced the entry into a $122,000 settlement with Comtech XiCom Technology, Inc. (“Comtech XiCom”), a leading supplier of high power amplifiers for satellite communications based in Santa Clara, CA, for three apparent violations of the Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”), caused by Comtech XiCom’s mistaken belief that certain exports could be made without BIS license or authorization.