Bloomberg Law
Sept. 6, 2019, 6:21 PM

NY State Bar: Don’t Help Foreign Clients Dodge Currency Controls

Melissa Heelan Stanzione
Melissa Heelan Stanzione

Attorneys can’t help their foreign clients make “sham investments” to avoid the foreign country’s currency control laws, the New York State Bar Association’s ethics committee recently advised.

A New York attorney working with clients looking to invest funds from China in the U.S. had asked the committee whether it was acceptable to use the attorney’s escrow account to avoid direct payment from the investing client to a U.S. company.

“In our view, the inquiry proposes sham conduct that would involve dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation,” the opinion said.

Four companies—two U.S. corporations and two Chinese corporations—sought to invest funds located ...

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