The global Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19” or “coronavirus”) outbreak has caused supply chain disruptions to businesses around the world. From delayed production to halted factory operations and slim shipping and freight options, the coronavirus costs keep mounting for businesses facing huge losses. Developing a cogent response to the outbreak can be extremely challenging, given the scale of the crisis and the rate at which it is evolving. Sheppard Mullin has mobilized a task force to assist clients address potential legal issues that may arise with respect to their supply chain or contracts.
With the growing concern about Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19” or “coronavirus”) some foreign nationals who live outside the U.S. have decided to fly to the U.S. and wait out the crisis. This article discusses the related visa and immigration issues, and what U.S. Customs and Border Protection requires to admit someone into the U.S. Continue Reading
On December 2, 2019, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced that in response to a digital services tax law passed in France, it would be retaliating with stringent tariffs on luxury products coming from France. The potential tariffs could target up to $2.4 billion worth of French imports into the United States, with duties as high as 100%. Continue Reading
The most pressing question around the new FIRRMA regulations is “Will my transaction be covered?” To provide a bit of guidance on that point, we present an illustration from our upcoming Second Edition of The CFIUS Book due out in March of this year. Continue Reading
On January 16, 2020, the United States Senate voted by an overwhelming majority to pass the implementing legislation for the United States-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement (USMCA) after months of tense negotiations with Democrats over revisions to the original agreement which had been signed by all three signatories on November 30, 2018.
The USMCA has been touted by its supporters as a comprehensive and modern trade agreement to replace the North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). But how does the USMCA differ from NAFTA and what is so modern about it? The following is a brief overview of the notable differences between this 21st century agreement and its predecessor: Continue Reading
With round after round of tariffs on Chinese goods, announcements, removals, exclusions, delays, increases and, of course, tweets regarding all of the above, it can be easy to get lost on where, exactly, things stand with respect to Tariffs implemented under Section 301 of the Trade Act. Below we provide a brief overview and reference chart, complete with links to the relevant notices. We will update the chart as the U.S. government adds, removes, or changes the tariffs.
** This is an update to our August 19, 2019 post. **
Almost two years into the trade war, the United States and China have reached a preliminary agreement. On January 15, 2020, the United States Trade Representative published that agreement. The agreement includes provisions on intellectual property, technology transfer, agriculture, currency, and expanding trade.
Per that agreement, the USTR will reduce duties on List 4A, which is roughly $120 billion worth of Chinese goods, from 15 to 7.5 percent effective on February 14, 2020.
On November 26, 2019, the U.S. Department of Commerce issued a proposed rule that could change how you procure IT goods and services.
The rule would allow the Commerce Department to review your company’s purchase of information and communications technology and services (ICTS), and to impose mitigation measures or unwind your transaction.
Go ahead. Read that again. We’ll wait. Continue Reading
The U.S. Department of Commerce is considering tightening export controls in two major ways. The changes are aimed at choking off supplies to Huawei, but the move could impact a wide range of commercial transactions for all EAR items and technology exported or reexported to China. Continue Reading
My VC Fund has U.S. and non-U.S. General Partners, will I need to file CFIUS declarations for every investment I want to make in tech, in infrastructure, or in a company with customers’ personal data?
This is a critical question at the fore of concerns for diversified investment funds with foreign-person directors. There are more than a few funds that have non-U.S. General Partners – perhaps posted overseas to scout potential investments abroad, or U.S. residents but not yet citizens who bring global experience to a U.S. table. In an increasingly global marketplace, there is a clear potential advantage for a U.S. investment fund to look for the most talented investors with the broadest perspectives from around the world. Continue Reading
Money laundering is no game. Yet, some games have been used for money laundering. That’s what prompted Valve to announce that it would end the online sales of loot box “keys” for its game Counter-Strike Global Offensive (CS:GO).
As of last week, Valve indicated that CS:GO container keys purchased in-game can no longer leave the purchasing account. Thus, they cannot be sold on the Steam Community Market or traded. Pre-existing CS:GO container keys are unaffected–those keys can still be sold and traded.
These CS-GO keys have historically been traded on the Steam Community Market as well as third party websites. The keys could be bought with money from the in-game shop or from Steam. Continue Reading