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International Contract Law: Key Issues to Consider When Conducting Business Overseas

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 91 minutes
Recorded Date: October 11, 2017
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Our panel will discuss:
  • Diligence in international business deals
  • Choice of laws clause
  • Terms of payment
  • Tax liability and requirements
  • Intellectual property concerns
  • International trade compliance provisions
Runtime: 1 hour and 31 minutes
Recorded: October 11, 2017


Business transactions across borders have grown exponentially over the past few years, outpacing the laws and regulations needed to govern them. Legal ramifications for international business gone awry have created damaging effects on the consumer, data security, and business operations. This webinar will present the challenges and associated risks with international business, and key provisions that should be included in these agreements.

This program was recorded on October 11th, 2017.

Provided By

American Bar Association
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Celeste Pozo

Lead Counsel
Inter-American Investment Corporation

Celeste Pozo is the Lead Counsel at Inter-American Investment Corporation.

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David A. Steiger

Sr. Claim Technical Director
Great American Custom

David A. Steiger is an attorney, author and lecturer, who has taught adult learners on the global economy and various legal topics for fifteen years.

Steiger was born in Gary, Indiana. His father, Norman, whose formal education ended in the 8th grade to allow him to work on the family farm, rose from the position of deckhand to ship Captain, and ultimately Ocean Pilot. His mother Mary Ann was a housewife and former ballroom dance instructor. (“The most expensive dance lessons I ever had,” remarked Norman, on how he met his future wife). Norman passed away after a two-year bout with bone and prostate cancer in 1983, but not before giving his teenaged son a coffee mug embossed with the word “Lawyer” on it—a statement of faith that still stands as a most treasured possession to this day.

After graduating from high school, Steiger Attended Indiana University at Bloomington, where he received a Bachelor’s in Political Science in 1987 and a Juris Doctor in 1990. After passing the Illinois Bar, he began his professional career as a litigation associate with a Chicago-based law firm.

By early 1999, Steiger left private practice to manage complex and catastrophic products liability litigation for the American subsidiary of a global insurance conglomerate. Freed from the tyranny of filling out daily timesheets, he soon joined the Adjunct Faculty of DePaul University’s School for New Learning, first teaching a course entitled “Global Capitalism.” The success of this course led to an opportunity to serve as a moderator for a series of panel discussions on issues in globalization, featuring current and retired Ambassadors to the United Nations. Steiger followed this up by designing and teaching courses to cohorts of native students at the International Bank of Asia in Hong Kong and St. Gabriel’s College in Bangkok, Thailand.

In 2003, Steiger published his first Op-ed piece, in the Sunday, September 30, 2003 edition of the Chicago Tribune. In that piece, Steiger showed an early flash of prescience (which has been a common theme of his work) postulating that the economic benefits of legal outsourcing would cause it to be more quickly and readily accepted than was generally thought at that time.

Recognizing that the increasing number of small and medium sized businesses being pulled into the global economy had few resources to guide them, Steiger set out in 2005 to create one for them. Over the next three years, he logged tens of thousands of miles to visit outsourcing centers in India, met with in-house legal staff in Singapore and developed guanxi with Chinese-based business insiders, while pulling together an impressive roster of experts in order to offer a truly global perspective on doing business overseas. In 2008, ABA Publishing released “The Globalized Lawyer: Secrets to Managing Outsourcing, Joint Ventures and other Cross-Border Transactions,” in which Steiger explained in clear, understandable terms critical methods and cautions related to the negotiation and implementation of cross-border transactions.

Now, with the publication of his second book, "Transactions Without Borders: A Client and Lawyer's Guide to Overseas Operations," Steiger expands his easily accessible explanation of international transactional topics into such critically important areas as anti-corruption compliance, intellectual property and data protection and labor and immigration issues. Targeting an audience of both transactional attorneys and the client executives who oversee their work product, this book will prove a useful guide to anyone involved in the planning, negotiation and implementation of an international business operation. In particular, the book is written with an eye towards educating and empowering transactional clients in a world in which the balance of power in their relationship with attorneys is already decidedly shifting in their favor.

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Fatima Merchant

Senior Associate
Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP

Fatema Merchant is a senior associate in the Government Contracts, Investigations & International Trade Practice Group in the firm's Washington, D.C. office.

Ms. Merchant's practice focuses on investigations, compliance counseling, and transactional due diligence related to international trade laws. She has extensive experience with U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and U.S.-Sanctioned Countries investigations, compliance, due diligence, and training. Ms. Merchant also advises clients on compliance with the International Traffic in Arms Regulations, Export Administration Regulations, Import regulations and Anti-Money Laundering laws. Ms. Merchant regularly handles due diligence and regulatory issues stemming from cross-border transactions, including filings with the U.S. State Department and Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).

At Sheppard Mullin, she is the Associate Chair of the D.C. Diversity Working Group. Ms. Merchant also serves on the pro bono committee and is actively involved in various pro bono matters, including representation of asylum seekers.

Prior to joining Sheppard Mullin, Ms. Merchant worked in the D.C. office of another international law firm, where she was also seconded as a Special Assistant Attorney General with the District of Columbia Office of the Attorney General. At the OAG, Ms. Merchant negotiated settlements, prepared dispositive motions, handled pleadings and discovery, and argued motions. She served as co-counsel in a jury trial in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, securing a favorable verdict for the District. Ms. Merchant is the President of the Capital Area Muslim Bar Association (CAMBA). She was recognized on the Lawyers of Color's Hot List in 2014 and by Super Lawyers as a Washington D.C. Rising Star in 2015-2017.

Ms. Merchant was also featured in The American Lawyer and on a podcast titled “Multiple Identities: Intersectional Challenges in the Legal Profession,” discussing challenges faced by lawyers of color and her work on diversity & inclusion issues in the legal profession.

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