In The News

An Introduction to FARA: The New Risk Environment

Anti-Corruption Report

17 Mar 2021

Brandon Van Grack spoke to the Anti-Corruption Report about the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), which governs foreign entities’ political activities in the United States and requires “foreign agents” to register with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

According to Brandon, companies today may have a harder time arguing that they did not know that there is a FARA requirement than before 2018 because of the increased focus on the law by the government and the media.

"The argument that the company has been operating in the space for decades and no one ever came knocking on the door so the company did not appreciate that there was a FARA obligation will be less likely to work, especially for multinational companies and sophisticated actors," Brandon said, referring to a FARA case.

In this new environment, a company can retroactively register to indicate that it has identified a historical issue and is self-correcting it. "That means that if there is an issue in the future, the company has demonstrated its good faith compliance with FARA once they realized there was an obligation," Brandon added.

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