An Introduction to FARA: The New Risk Environment

A confluence of factors has led to a dramatic rise in enforcement of the Foreign Agents’ Registration Act (FARA), which governs foreign entities’ political activities in the United States and requires “foreign agents” to register with the Attorney General. FARA did not see much action for generations, and this new environment changes the risk calculus for entities that may be engaging in registrable behavior. All signs point to continued enforcement, and continued interest in the issue from companies. In this second installment of our article series, we discuss the new risk landscape, the downsides of registering, the utility of the DOJ’s advisory opinions and the DOJ’s enforcement priorities. In the next article, we will cover the enforcement process, including inquiry letters, civil and criminal actions, as well as compliance steps. The first article analyzed the history of the law, and covered its definitions and exemptions. See “CFIUS Expands Review Power to Some Non-Controlling Foreign Investment in U.S. Businesses” (Apr. 1, 2020).

To read the full article

Continue reading your article with an ACR subscription.