Managing Trade Investigations in a COVID-19 Climate

WorldECR

July/August 2020

In this article, Tim O'Toole and Aiysha Hussain discuss the challenges of conducting investigations remotely given the restrictions imposed by COVID-19 and provide practical considerations for companies managing investigations during the pandemic. The authors wrote that although the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) issued a notice indicating a "willingness to consider the surrounding economic realities," caused by COVID-19, it will not forego the pursuit of enforcement actions. As companies navigate the investigations process remotely, the authors detailed important considerations for companies including whether to delay the investigation, the difficulties and limitations of video interviews, and how to deal with preserving data and documents remotely.