Ben Flowe has substantial expertise in advising and representing companies in all aspects of international business, including export controls, embargoes and sanctions, foreign military sales, customs law, antiboycott laws, Exon-Florio CFIUS reviews of mergers, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. He also has expertise in international trade remedies cases, trade policy matters, cross border business transactions, and finance.
For over twenty-five years, Ben has worked extensively in counseling, licensing, rule making, lawmaking, and enforcement matters involving export controls and trade embargoes and sanctions on exports of both "dual-use" and military goods and technology. Mr. Flowe advises both U.S. and non-U.S. based companies on the application of these U.S. laws to their exports and their non-U.S. business. Clients range from multinational businesses to startup companies. Ben is the author of the comprehensive Export Compliance Guide (1995), is a member of the Commerce Department's Regulations and Procedures Technical Advisory Committee (Vice Chair 2001-2002), Co-Chair of AeA’s Export Controls Committee (2002-2003), and Chair or Vice Chair of the ABA's Export Controls and Economic Sanctions Committee (1997-2006). Chambers U.S.A. 2007 lawyer peer rating service called Ben a “leading light” and “one of the finest export control lawyers around”. Ben prepares Export Licensing Client Memoranda on a fee sharing basis to advise clients on how to adapt to significant changes in these areas.
Ben has established numerous internal legal compliance programs in this area and has conducted audits of the implementation of such programs. Such in-house compliance programs help clients manage their exporting activities and address most efficiently the burdens that export control laws impose on doing business. Companies that export mostly under exceptions to license requirements should adopt some form of compliance program because they alone are responsible for compliance with regulatory conditions for exporting. He has established unique compliance programs for aerospace and defense companies whose exports are controlled mostly under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations and for non-U.S. companies that need to comply with U.S. reexport controls as well as their own laws.
When needed, Ben Flowe also has substantial experience in successfully representing clients in enforcement matters and has drafted and shepherded numerous voluntary disclosures to the various agencies having jurisdiction, including Justice, State, Commerce, Treasury’s the Office of Foreign Assets Control, DHS Customs and Border Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. He is well respected for his credibility at both the political and staff levels of all affected agencies.
Other areas of practice include: international business transactions, including joint ventures, distribution agreements, licensing agreements, compliance with local laws and U.S. laws; advice on strategies for manufacturing and marketing to lower costs, avoid dumping and other trade remedies, and maximize efficiencies; advice and representation in bringing unfair trade actions against imports from competitors that injure the U.S. industry because of dumping, subsidies, intellectual property infringement, etc.; customs and Import Laws; U.S. antiboycott rules and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act restrictions; advice on international antitrust issues (based on increased market share in the U.S. and elsewhere); export financing (World Bank, IFC, Export Import Bank, OPIC), political risk insurance, and use of public marketing resources; Foreign Military Sales; tax planning for international transactions, intracompany transfer pricing, deferral of income from foreign subsidiaries, Foreign Sales Corporations to defer income tax on export sales, offshore tax havens, etc. Ben has excellent working relationships with administrative and congressional officials from the political to the staff levels to assist clients in any of these areas.
Ben Flowe received his J.D. with high honors (top five) in 1981 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was elected to Order of the Coif, was Executive Editor of the N.C. Journal of International Law and Commercial Regulation, and was a member of the North Carolina Law Review. He received his A.B. in Sociology and Psychology from Duke University in 1978. He is listed in Who's Who in the World and is a member of the U.S. Supreme Court Bar, among others.