Heather C. Sears is a veteran trade compliance counsel who represents global businesses on compliance with and extraterritorial application of US laws and regulations relating to international trade. She also is a member of the US State Department’s Defense Trade Advisory Group and serves as the vice chair on the board of the National Council for International Trade Development. Heather is admitted in Maryland only, and her practice is supervised by DC Bar members.
Heather has advised clients on a wide variety of international issues, including compliance with the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), sanctions regulations administered by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) regulations, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).
She also has developed and implemented trade compliance programs; conducted audits and internal investigations; prepared voluntary disclosures for submission to the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, the Office of Export Enforcement and CBP; prepared commodity jurisdiction and commodity classification requests; conducted training; facilitated regulatory change; and implemented export control reform. She also has represented foreign and domestic clients on international transactions involving the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) and proposed acquisition and mitigation arrangements for non-US-owned defense businesses.
Before joining Morgan Lewis, Heather represented corporate clients through her own firm, Global Compliance Counsel LLC, and served as in-house trade and compliance counsel for a number of defense contractors and manufacturers.
University of Maryland, 2007, M.I.M.
University of Maryland, 2006, M.B.A.
University of Baltimore School of Law, 1998, J.D.
Francis Marion University, 1995, B.S.
Awards and Affiliations
Member, Defense Trade Advisory Group, US Department of State
Vice Chair, National Council for International Trade Development