OFAC Licensing Lawyers

OFAC licensing lawyers play a critical role in helping businesses and individuals navigate the intricate landscape of U.S. economic sanctions programs. As the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) administers and enforces these sanctions, certain transactions with sanctioned countries, entities, or individuals may require licenses or authorizations. Obtaining these licenses can be a complex and challenging process, which is where the expertise of OFAC licensing lawyers comes into play.

These specialized lawyers have in-depth knowledge of the OFAC regulations, policies, and licensing procedures. They can assist clients in determining whether a specific transaction or activity requires a license, as well as guide them through the process of applying for the necessary permissions from OFAC. This may involve preparing a detailed and persuasive application, highlighting the reasons why the proposed transaction should be authorized, and ensuring that all required documentation is provided.

We have recently assisted the following parties in obtaining OFAC licenses:

  • Obtained OFAC-specific licenses for exporting pharmaceuticals and medical devices to sanctioned countries, including Iran, Cuba, Syria, and Sudan, on behalf of a number of multinational medical device and pharmaceutical companies;
  • Obtained OFAC licenses to export aircraft parts to Iran and to act as a broker in such transactions;
  • Represented a significant international shipping company in licensing matters involving OFAC;
  • Obtained a specific OFAC license for a prominent U.S. insurer to pay out a policy to Iranian parties.
  • Obtained an OFAC-specific license to unblock Cuban Assets Control Regulations-blocked funds.
  • Obtained an OFAC license to unblock funds barred in accordance with the Ukraine/Russia sanctions program.
  • Obtained OFAC licenses to import medical devices from a blocked Russian entity in accordance with the Ukraine-related/Russia sanctions program.
  • Represented a European airline seeking an OFAC license to unblock funds frozen under the Counter-Proliferation Sanctions Program.

OFAC licensing lawyers also work closely with clients to develop strategies for navigating the often rapidly evolving landscape of U.S. sanctions. They stay up-to-date on changes to sanctions programs and are well-versed in the nuances of specific sanctions regimes, such as those targeting Iran, North Korea, or Venezuela. This expertise allows them to advise clients on how to structure transactions or business activities to minimize the risk of sanctions violations and ensure compliance with U.S. laws.

In addition to assisting with license applications, OFAC licensing lawyers can also represent clients in the event of potential violations of OFAC regulations. They may help clients prepare and submit voluntary self-disclosures to OFAC if a violation has occurred, which may result in reduced penalties or other favorable outcomes. Furthermore, they can represent clients in enforcement actions initiated by OFAC or other regulatory authorities, including negotiating settlements or defending against administrative proceedings.

In conclusion, OFAC licensing lawyers are essential for businesses and individuals seeking to navigate the complex world of U.S. economic sanctions. Their expertise in licensing procedures, compliance strategies, and enforcement actions can help clients minimize risk, obtain necessary permissions, and protect their interests in a challenging regulatory environment.

OFAC Licensing FAQ

What types of transactions or activities typically require an OFAC license?
Transactions or activities that involve sanctioned countries, entities, or individuals typically require an OFAC license. This may include trade, financial transactions, travel, or the provision of certain services involving the sanctioned parties.
How can an OFAC licensing lawyer help my organization obtain the necessary licenses for transactions subject to U.S. sanctions?
An OFAC licensing lawyer can help your organization by assessing whether a license is required, preparing a persuasive application, navigating the licensing process, and providing expert guidance on compliance with sanctions laws.
What is the process for applying for an OFAC license, and how long does it usually take to receive a response?
The process involves submitting a detailed application to OFAC, including relevant documentation and justification for the proposed transaction. The response time varies depending on the complexity of the request and OFAC's workload, ranging from a few weeks to several months.
Are there any exemptions or general licenses available that may allow certain transactions without applying for a specific OFAC license?
Yes, OFAC provides exemptions and general licenses for certain types of transactions or activities. These cover specific situations or categories and may allow parties to engage in otherwise prohibited transactions without applying for a specific license.
How can an OFAC licensing lawyer assist in the event of a potential sanctions violation related to licensed transactions?
An OFAC licensing lawyer can help by conducting an internal investigation to identify potential violations, advising on remedial actions, preparing voluntary self-disclosures to OFAC, and representing clients in enforcement actions, if necessary.
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