Category Archives: International Employment Law

Quirky Question #258, Ex Pat Trailing Partners


Fred, one of our technical IT specialists, just told us that his partner volunteered for a European assignment.   Fred’s a great guy and we need him but he earns less than his partner and wants the experience of working abroad.   If we don’t help him, Fred will probably look for overseas work with a competitor and he’s sure to get it.    Is there any reason why we shouldn’t say yes and keep Fred on our team?  Is Fred worth it? Answer→

The UK’s Bribery Act of 2010: The Obligations and Risks It Imposes on US Employers with Business in the UK


The UK Bribery Act is expected to come into force shortly. The Act was implemented in response to pressure on the UK to reform its outdated anti-corruption legislation. The scope of the Act is broader than that of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). Whereas the FCPA only applies if the recipient is a foreign official, the Bribery Act 2010 will cover all bribes, regardless of the recipient’s status. The new Act has extra-territorial effect and has implications for any corporation or group carrying on part of its business in the UK, regardless of where it is incorporated.

The Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”), the UK agency charged with investigating and prosecuting corruption, has backed up its threats of real action to enforce the Act with a series of prosecutions in 2010 under the existing legislation. Companies based in the US also should be aware that US regulatory agencies have been achieving results working alongside the UK authorities in order to bring criminal proceedings on both sides of the Atlantic, leading to the prosecution of companies and individual officers. Answer→

Employment Law in China

Best Practices to Ensure that a Non-Competition Agreement is Enforceable in China

By Richard Chao and Haidong Yang


After more than a year since the implementation of the PRC Employment Contract Law (the “Law”) (the PRC Employment Contract Law was promulgated on August 5, 2007 and became effective on January 1, 2008; the Implementing Regulations for the PRC Employment Contract Law became effective on September 18, 2008), the law governing non-competition agreements remains unsettled.  Employers should work closely with counsel to ensure that their non-competition agreements are up to date and enforceable in China.  The general rule is that the employee must receive reasonable compensation for the non-competition agreement to be enforceable.  Underneath this general rule, however, two traps wait silently for the unwary. Answer→

Downsizing and Foreign Nationals, Quirky Question # 76

Quirky Question # 76:

I read with interest your analysis of alternatives to layoffs [Quirky Question # 71].  We have a slightly different issue.  Like many companies, we are facing the difficult prospect of downsizing staff.  We are a small technology company with operations in the US and an office abroad.  Among our professional staff are a number of foreign nationals with a veritable alphabet soup of immigration statuses.  We have a permanent resident, a couple of H-1B’s, and L-1A, an L-1B, a TN and an F-1 foreign student thrown in for good measure  If we lay off or reduce the hours or salaries of these individuals are there any special considerations we need to think about from an immigration perspective? Answer→