MassPoint Named “Corporate Law Firm of the Year” USA in Finance Monthly Global Awards 2017

MassPoint Legal and Strategy Advisory PLLC Named “Corporate Law Firm of the Year” United States in Finance Monthly Global Awards   MassPoint Legal and Strategy Advisory PLLC (“MassPoint PLLC“), a boutique Washington. D.C. law and strategy firm, was named  2017 Finance Monthly’s Global Awards “Corporate Law Firm of the Year” for the United States. About the Finance Monthly Global Awards Finance Monthly is a “global publication delivering news, comment and analysis to those at the centre of the corporate sector.”  “The Finance Monthly Global Awards recognise and commend financial organisations and advisors worldwide who have performed in the highest level possible and celebrate the success, innovation and quality of firms working in,… Read More

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OFAC DIRECTIVE 1 AS AMENDED SEPTEMBER 29, 2017

Business Update | October 11, 2017 | Author: Hdeel Abdelhady | PDF OFAC Further Tightens Russia Debt Prohibitions Pursuant to the Countering Russian Influence in Europe and Eurasia Act of 2017 As required by the Countering Russian Influence in Europe and Eurasia Act of 2017 (CRIEEA),[i] the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on September 29, 2017 amended and reissued OFAC Directive 1 (Directive 1).[ii] As amended, Directive 1 continues to prohibit certain “new” debt, equity, and related transactions involving entities subject to U.S. Sectoral Sanctions targeting Russia’s financial services sector. This Business Update discusses the background to and mechanics of Directive 1 as amended and reissued. Ukraine/Russia-Related… Read More

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Banks, Credit Unions and Other Financial Insitutions as Deputized Law Enforcement

From Anti-Money Laundering to Immigration Enforcement: Time to Reassess the Law Enforcement Role of Banks, Credit Unions and Other Financial Intermediaries.  “Credit unions are deeply committed to the fight against crime, but it is important to recognize we are not law enforcement agents and we have certain fundamental limitations.” This statement, made by the Senior Vice President and General Counsel of a major U.S. credit union in testimony before Congress in July 2017,[1] reflects the legal and regulatory requirements and expectations that banks, credit unions, money services businesses, and other financial intermediaries can, must, and should play a role in combatting the misuse of the financial system for illicit purposes.… Read More

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Texas Supreme Court Clears Way for Non-Texas Lawyers to Help Hurricane Harvey Victims

The Supreme Court of Texas has issued an emergency order allowing for lawyers not licensed in Texas to temporarily practice in that State for up to six months from August 29, 2017, the date of the emergency order. The order permits out-of-state lawyers to practice in Texas in two circumstances, one of them being to provide “legal-aid” or pro bono services to Hurricane Harvey victims, subject to the requirements that, inter alia, out-of-state lawyers be in good standing in their home jurisdiction(s) and be “retained by a legal-aid or pro bono program or a bar association that provides services to victims of Hurricane Harvey.” The Emergency Order After Hurricane Harvey Permitting… Read More

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House Bill Would Enhance U.S. States’ Iran Sanctions Authority

On July 26, 2017, a bill was introduced in the House that would bolster U.S. states’ authority to impose sanctions on parties that engage in certain business with or in Iran. The State Sanctions Against Iranian Terrorism Act, H.R. 3425, would “amend the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 to secure the authority of State and local governments to adopt and enforce measures restricting investment in business enterprises in Iran, and for other purposes.” Among other measures, the House Bill would expand U.S. states’ authority to impose indirect Iran sanctions by excluding or debarring from state procurement and investments parties that do business in or with Iran, where… Read More

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House Bill Would Establish National Strategy for Combating Terrorism Financing

On July 20, 2017, Representative Ted Budd (R-NC) introduced in the House of Representatives H.R. 3321, the “National Strategy for Combating Terrorist, Underground, and Other Illicit Financing Act.” The purpose of H.R. 3321 is to “require the establishment of a national strategy for combating the financing of terrorism and related financial crimes, and for other purposes.” As summarized by the House Financial Services Committee, which will meet to markup the bill on July 25, 2017, H.R. 3321 would among other measures “require the President, acting through the Treasury Secretary, to develop and publish a whole-of-government strategy to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.” The text of H.R. 3321 is available here.  ****  For more information about… Read More

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Maryland Banking Regulation: Commercial Bank Directors State Residency

Commercial banks in Maryland will soon have an added degree of latitude in selecting their directors. On April 18, 2017, Governor Hogan approved Maryland Senate Bill 206, Financial Institutions – Qualifications of Directors of Commercial Banks – Residency (the “Amendment”). The Amendment, which repeals and reenacts, with amendments, Section 3-403 of the Maryland Code, Financial Institutions Article, provides that “[a]t least 30% of the directors of a commercial bank shall be residents of this State.” The Amendment, which takes effect on October 1, 2017, will decrease, as of its effective date, the percentage of commercial bank directors that must be residents of Maryland. Current law requires that a “majority” of commercial bank directors be… Read More

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Abu Dhabi Global Market to Offer Foundation Vehicle

Abu Dhabi Global Market to Offer Foundation Vehicle, Public Consultation Open Through July 5, 2017 June 1, 2017 Ι Download Update Ι Author: Hdeel Abdelhady Proposed Foundation Regime and Public Consultation Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the international financial center and free zone located on Al Maryah Island in the UAE capital Abu Dhabi, yesterday opened a public consultation on the ADGM’s proposed foundation regime (Consultation Paper No. 3 of 2017 and proposed Foundations Regulations 2017). Valuable for Family Firms, Philanthropy, and Wealth Management The development is significant and positive, as the ADGM foundation, as proposed, would be the first-of-its kind in the UAE and particularly helpful for family businesses, philanthropy and… Read More Continue Reading

U.S. Senators Raise National Security Concerns About Foreign Investment in U.S. Real Estate

U.S. Senators Ask GAO to Assess CFIUS' Approach to Foreign Investment in U.S. Real Estate Senators Seek Review of CFIUS' Capacity and Approach to "Full Range of National Security Issues" Posed by Foreign Investment in U.S. Real Estate On May 17, 2017, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH)—respectively ranking members of the Senate Finance; Homeland Security and Government Affairs; and Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committees of the U.S. Senate—asked the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to review the approach taken by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) to foreign investment in U.S. real estate and to "assess whether and how CFIUS… Read More Continue Reading

China’s One Belt One Road Could Disrupt U.S. Legal Dominance

How China's One Belt One Road Will Open Trade Routes and Raise Barriers to U.S. Law Source: The Economist On May 14, 2017, President Xi Jinping of China outlined plans to fund China's One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative. If successful, OBOR would alter the global trade landscape and, secondarily, likely curtail the global reach of U.S. law. The potential legal effects of the OBOR and other non-U.S. dollar- and Bretton Woods system-centric trade and finance initiatives were discussed in an earlier MassPoint Occasional Note. Given President Xi's fresh announcement of concrete plans to carry forward the OBOR project, MassPoint's earlier discussion of the project's potential curtailment of the global reach of… Read More Continue Reading