Export Control Basics

Exports generally cover four main areas:

  • transfers of controlled information, including technical data, to persons and entities outside the United States;
  • shipment of controlled physical items, such as scientific equipment, that require export licenses from the United States to a foreign country;
  • verbal, written, electronic, or visual disclosures of controlled scientific and technical information related to export controlled items to foreign nationals (everyone other than a U.S. citizen, a permanent resident alien, and certain ‘protected individuals’ (refugees and those with asylum), including any company not incorporated in the United States). Such a transfer is termed a “deemed export” and is regulated because the transfer is “deemed” to be to the country where the person is a resident or a citizen;
  • travel to certain sanctioned or embargoed countries for purposes of teaching or performing research.

What is an Export? It is the

  • Transfer of Controlled
    • Technology
    • Software
    • Information
    • Source Code
    • Equipment
    • Services (ITAR)
  • To:
    • A non-U.S. entity or individual, wherever located,
    • Anyone outside the U.S., including U.S. citizens
  • By Any Means:
    • Actual shipment outside the US
    • Visual inspection in or outside the US
    • Tours of labs
    • Training sessions
    • Computer data

A “Deemed Export” is the transfer, release or disclosure of Technical Data or Technology to a foreign national within the United States (including university campuses).  A transfer is the same as exporting it to the home country of the foreign national.

Who are U.S. Persons?

  • U.S. citizens
  • Aliens who are “Lawful Permanent Residents” (Green Card holders)
  • Other “Protected Individuals”
    • designated an asylee or refugee
    • a temporary resident under amnesty provision
    • Any entity incorporated to do business in the U.S.

Who are Foreign Persons?

  • Everyone else:
    • Any foreign interest or any US Person effectively owned or controlled by a foreign interest
      • Includes foreign businesses not incorporated in the U.S., persons representing other Foreign Persons, any foreign government
      • Includes: H1B Work Visa, F1 Study Visa, J1 Training Visa, E1 Investors Visa, TN Work Visa, L1 Intra-Company Transfer Visa, K and V Fiancée Visas

NOTE: EAR does not use the term foreign person - instead it refers to “foreign national”- they mean the same thing


Applies to following UMCES areas:

  • Research
  • Purchasing
  • Material Transfer Agreements, Non-Disclosure Agreements
  •  Human Resources
  • Shipping
  • Visiting Faculty – Foreign Nationals
  • Foreign Travel
  • International Education
  • Foreign Students

Export control laws apply to all activities – not just sponsored research projects. Your award does not have to cite the regulations for export controls to apply