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Distance Learning
Distance Learning

OD: What Role Do Business Officers Play in Identifying Legal Risks with International Activities?

Recorded: Thursday, October 20, 2011, 1:30 PM ET


Business officers play a key role in identifying legal risks associated with international programs and activities. Transactional processes to support activities abroad are often the catalyst for identifying where legal issues may be present. This may include one or more of the following:

  • Payments to an overseas vendor (contractors, rental payments, etc.)
  • Wire transfers to a university bank account set up abroad
  • Cash advances or wire transfers to employees, often to a personal foreign bank account
  • Cash receipts from international payee
  • Addition of employee to payroll working in a foreign country

These factors may be present upon commencement of a new activity, but may also indicate a change in an existing activity, thereby increasing legal risk and signaling the involvement of the university’s general counsel’s office.

While there are many types of legal risks associated with international activities, the business transactions discussed above may trigger tax and reporting responsibilities in the foreign country, generally defined by a concept called Permanent Establishment (PE).  Identification of possible PE and other legal risks can significantly reduce financial and reputational risk to the university.

What You Will Learn

  • Learn which business transactions on the home campus may be a catalyst for legal risks for international programs
  • Identify what common international activities may increase legal risk
  • Gain a stronger understanding of the concept of permanent establishment and other legal considerations
  • Explore several approaches to reducing the risk of permanent establishment

Meet the Presenters

  • William Nicholson, Associate University Counsel Duke University
  • Bill Ferreira, Partner, Hogan Lovells
  • Moderator: Bob Lammey, Higher Education Leader, High Street Partners

Who Should Participate

  • Chief financial officers
  • Risk managers
  • Controllers
  • General Counsel

Course Information

  • Course Level: Intermediate
  • Length: 100 minutes


Member Site Fee: $189.00
Non-Member Site Fee: $219.00


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