Export Controls

Organizations dependent on exporting technology and other items face a complex patchwork of regulatory regimes, including the International Trade in Arms Regulations (ITAR) for defense articles and services, the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) for non-military/commercial items and the embargo regulations enforced by the Office of Foreign Asset Controls (OFAC).  These regulatory regimes are complex, far reaching and relatively unforgiving.

For this reason, government contractors understand that effectively identifying and managing export control issues is vital to their success, particularly given the increased enforcement actions taken by the federal Government.  For defense contractors, proper export controls are absolutely essential since violations can lead to default termination, suspension and debarment, in addition to the already substantial civil and criminal penalties under the export control laws themselves. 

Dempsey Fontana attorneys help our clients identify, assess and understand export control risks and address them in the most cost-effective manner, either by modifying the underlying business plan or by developing and/or implementing effective and tailored compliance programs.  Our attorneys also work with our clients to determine the appropriate classification of the articles, services or technology being exported and to obtain the necessary export licenses, agreements or other authorizations.  In the event export control violations are discovered or suspected, our attorneys will also lead internal investigations to assess the situation and help manage the client’s response, including preparation of disclosures where appropriate. 



Our representative matters include:

  • Drafted and submitted a technology assistance agreement concerning a chemical weapons destruction program to the US Department of State for a joint venture that included both foreign and domestic companies.
  • Counseled clients on exports governed by ITAR, including technical assistance agreements (TAA) and manufacturing license agreements (MLA)
  • Conducted compliance investigations related to ITAR and EAR and other export control issues.
  • Represented clients facing criminal and civil investigations regarding alleged violations of export control laws.
  • Advised international joint ventures, teaming agreements and other strategic alliances on export control issues.
  • Counseled clients regarding procurements governed by the Foreign Military Sales (“FMS”) and Foreign Military Funding (“FMF”) programs.
  • Advised clients on direct sales to foreign governments and non-government entities.
  • Advised clients on the issues concerning the formation of foreign companies and foreign branch offices.
  • Counseled clients on legal issues under Status of Forces Agreements (“SOFA”)
  • Advised clients on foreign offset programs and related requirements.
  • Advised client with regard to voluntary disclosures of ITAR violations to the U.S. Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls.