Frequently Asked Questions

About Empire Magnetics

It is quite possible that you are involved in a criminal activity. If you sell a product which at some point in the future is exported, and if that product should wind up in the hands of yet to be defined "bad guys", you could be held responsible.

If this sounds far fetched, let me tell you that it is not a joke. If you are like me, about now you willl want to toss this in the trash can. Go ahead, but understand that you are at risk.

In 1996, the US Government decided to make export rules "simpler" Of course this means things got easier for the government officials, and more difficult for those of us trying to make money. Under the new rules, anybody that has anything to do with the sale and distribution of a product, can be held responsible if that product should wind up in the hands of bad people, bad countries or is used for bad purposes. Under the new rules, as interpreted by the enforcement department of BXA a manufacturer is required to know the end use and end user of every product that is sold by the company.

The BXA does publish the list of bad countries: They are Albania, Armenia, Azerbaiijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Cambodia, China, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Mongolia, Romania, Russia, Taijikstan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Viet Nam.

And the very bad countries are: Cuba, North Korea, Libya, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan

The list of bad people is contained in the BXA denied persons list, which may be accessed at

You also need to know that according to BXA interpretations of the law, shipping a product to an intermediate customer in the USA does not relieve you of the responsibility of knowing the end use and the end user of the product.

When we get to bad uses, the problem becomes much more difficult. As I found this out in a recent exchange with a BXA enforcement agent. A motor which is used in a vacuum, as part of a semiconductor process machine, where the semiconductors could potentially wind up in a piece of foreign military hardware may require an export license….. and more important as a co-opted enforcement agency we who are in business are supposed to KNOW that this could happen and bring it to BXA attention for review.

Furthermore because the intelligence community considers the list of things is does not know to be very secret, they don’t publish a list of things they do, or will care about in the future. So technically anyone who sells anything can be held responsible for unwitting actions.

Since these are new rules, the court cases and legal processes which will define the extent of responsibility have not played out. Even within the BXA there is considerable internal discussion as to what the requirements of compliance will be. Based on the best legal advice we can afford, it appears the best course of action is to create a paper trail which clearly shows the intent to comply, and good faith efforts to comply, with the export regulations.

To that end, Empire Magnetics Inc. hereby serves notice to all sales personnel, distributors, value added resellers, representatives, machine builders, customers, and any casual observers, that any or all of the Empire Magnetics Inc. products may require export licenses.