John Foote advises companies on policy, compliance and enforcement issues, with a particular emphasis on international trade. He regularly speaks and writes on issues relating to public policy and international trade.
Prior to joining the Firm, John was a law clerk for the Hon. Gregory W. Carman at the US Court of International Trade. He has a strong commitment to pro bono legal work.
John’s international trade practice is focused on helping companies navigate the evolving global trade landscape. He provides counsel on US trade policy and priorities, helping companies respond strategically to US trade enforcement actions (such as under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974, Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, and the Enforce and Protect Act), and advises on existing, new and renegotiated trade agreements (such as the USMCA). John has particular experience on issues at the intersection of trade and labor, including the U.S. ban on imported goods made with forced labor (19 U.S.C. § 1307), and the Rapid Response Labor Mechanism in the USMCA.
John advises clients on how to minimize the disruptions of supplemental tariffs through valuation- and classification-based strategies, preferential duty programs, and duty drawback. He counsels on customs and trade compliance, including country of origin marking, reducing exposure to antidumping and countervailing duties, and complying with import-related regulatory requirements enforced by CBP, and assists companies in mitigating liability by filing prior disclosures with CBP. John represents clients in customs and trade disputes before the US Court of International Trade and US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
John also advises on matters relating to the agreements of the WTO and on multilateral agreements under negotiation. His advice is oriented around helping companies understand the rights and opportunities afforded as a result of prior national government commitments under existing WTO law, and in ongoing negotiations.
Since early 2019, John has been extensively involved in advising Facebook on the development and design of the company’s proposed Oversight Board for content moderation.
Representative Legal Matters
Assisted Facebook in designing and conducting a public consultation with respect to the formation of the company's proposed Oversight Board for content moderation
Represented a U.S. consumer goods importer on a tariff classification dispute before the U.S. Court of International Trade, successfully persuading CBP to voluntarily abandon its classification opinion, resulting in multi-million dollar refund.
Represented clients in filing comments on proposed trade enforcement actions (e.g., the proposed coverage of Section 301 tariffs), and in preparing product exclusion requests from Section 301 and Section 232 tariffs.
Advised a coalition of tech companies on the conformity of a proposed Indonesian regulation with Indonesia’s previous commitments under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS).
Assisted a company named in a forced labor withhold release order (“WRO”) issued by CBP in obtaining the complete revocation of such order—the only such complete WRO revocation in the modern era of CBP forced labor enforcement.
Advised multiple importers on “first sale” duty savings programs and FTA eligibility reviews.
Professional Associations and Memberships
- American Bar Association - International Section
- Customs and International Trade Bar Association
- New York~United States (2009)
- District of Columbia~United States (2016)
- University of Kansas (MA Economics) (2008)
- University of Kansas School of Law (JD) (2008)
- Miami University (Ohio) (BA cum laude) (2002)
Presenter, Pro Bono Luncheon, Baker McKenzie Annual Meeting, October 2018
Presenter, "Human Rights, Forced Labor and Ethical Supply Chains: Best Practices for Managing Growing Legal Obligations and Risks," January 2018
Presenter, "WTO Compliance of U.S. Proposed Destination-Based Cash Flow Tax / Border Adjustable Tax," February 2017
Op-Ed author, "Americans to be first casualties of Trump’s looming trade war," The Hill, July 2018
Co-author, "U.S. Customs and Border Protection Forced Labor Update & Recommendations," Baker McKenzie, December 2017