■ ■ Shifting Brexit. Between the United Kingdom and the United States alone, there are about
200 trade agreements that will have to be affirmed or renegotiated as a result of the United
Kingdom’s exit from the European Union. In-house counsel should create opt-out clauses that
allow the company to reset relationships if laws or treaties change.
■ ■ Fate of the FCPA. Under the new US administration, the future of the Foreign Corrupt
Practices Act (FCPA) is increasingly uncertain. Enforcement is likely to become more
selective with countries perceived to be a threat.
■ ■ The digital border. For businesses, the greatest cross-border danger may lie in not
understanding the digital privacy laws of a foreign jurisdiction. This is especially true in the
European Union, where new laws restrict the transfer of personal information overseas.
■ ■ Follow the leader. Designate a cross-border manager who can monitor the changing
developments of international matters, update best practices as a result of such changes, and
consider the company’s interests abroad.
By John R. Sandweg and Samar S. Ali As many nations embrace a new
strain of isolationism, recognition of international borders will
become increasingly top of mind for in-house counsel in ways
that most have never contemplated before. From international
acquisitions to matters as mundane as sending an email,
companies will encounter new rules, fresh enforcement of old
rules, and an assortment of unintended consequences as nations
become more conscious of sovereignty. Trust may erode and
relationships will be tested due to redefining standards. As
such, it is more important than ever to make sure that both the
business and the legal department are constantly collaborating as
they communicate and manage the flow of goods, services, and
personnel across borders.