Admitted to practice in both the U.S. and the People’s Republic of China, Sunny is a corporate attorney who focuses on international business matters and trade. She represents Chinese and other foreign entities doing business in the U.S. and U.S. entities pursuing investments and operating overseas with a focus of China.
A large portion of Sunny’s practice focuses on assisting international companies doing business in the U.S. As a native Chinese speaker with over a decade of experience practicing in the U.S., Sunny strategically applies a multicultural skill set to help her clients successfully achieve their goals. She serves as outside general counsel for dozens of domestic and international companies in the U.S. and works with them daily to support their internal and external legal needs. This general counsel work includes market entry, corporate governance, contract negotiations, business transactions, mergers and acquisitions, employment, IP strategy, import-export matters, immigration, government investigations and domestic and cross-border litigations and arbitrations. Sunny has successfully represented clients in complex U.S.-China cross-border litigation and arbitration, including claims involving fraud, breach of fiduciary duties, trade secret misappropriation, breach of contract, product liability and IP infringement. She additionally supports clients with estate planning matters, focusing on advising corporate executives planning for the purchase of U.S. property by non-U.S. persons, transferring and protecting assets and wealth, and strategizing business succession planning.
Advising U.S. companies doing business internationally, Sunny has counseled clients through market entry, import-export, trade compliance, corporate governance, intellectual property protection, regulatory compliance, and Asia-Pacific strategic planning. She advises U.S. clients with regard to buying and selling businesses, analyzing risk and facilitating appropriate due diligence for the client’s business in China. She regularly assists U.S. companies of all sizes with negotiating commercial agreements with Chinese companies and provide advice as to intellectual property protection in connection with their business dealings in China. She further has experience advising U.S. Companies on compliance with China’s Personal Information Protection Law, focusing on cross-border data transfer. Sunny further works with local counsel in China to bridge the gaps between the U.S. and Chinese legal systems and assist U.S. companies in managing their litigations in China.
Sunny is experienced in complex international trade matters, including export control and sanctions, customs, Section 301 and other trade remedy matters. She advises clients on export control matters and assists clients with internal export control compliance programs and investigations, including issues related to the Export Administration Regulations, the Entity List administered by the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), and the SDN List administered by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). Sunny also advises clients on country-of-origin determination, product exclusion, and supply chain strategic analysis, which is crucial for companies’ industrial chain layouts during the China-US trade war.
Sunny’s experience spans clients of all sizes, from Fortune 500 companies to emerging businesses. Clients in a wide variety of industries, including manufacturing, energy, healthcare, real estate, marketing, consulting, technology and telecommunications, rely on Sunny for her dedication to client service and creative approach to problem solving.
Sunny is active in several industry organizations, holding leadership roles in regional and national bar associations. She is a frequent speaker and writer on various domestic and international business, trade and investment related issues.
Advised a Chinese publicly traded company regarding various employment agreements, work policies, wage and hour law, employee benefits and immigration issues
Advised a Taiwanese publicly traded company regarding variousemployment agreements issues for its subsidiary in the U.S.
Advised a major U.S. health institution on Englishproficiency/fluency requirement
Advised a major U.S. energy company on Fair Credit Reporting Act, Truth in Lending Act, Consumer Leasing Act and other consumer protection compliance and drafted opinion letters
Advised a Chinese energy company’s U.S. subsidiary regarding potential misclassification of employee status and immigration issues
Advised a Pennsylvania education institution regarding wage and hour law compliance issues
Represented a major U.S. banking institution in a securities fraud investigation conducted by the SEC and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board
Represented a major Pennsylvania educational institution in an investigation conducted by the federal government regarding improper management of grants under the Small Business Innovation Research program and the Small Business Technology Transfer program, and drafted related compliance policies
Represented a pharmaceutical company in a FCPA investigation conducted by the SEC and DOJ regarding its business operation in China
Advised a U.S. company regarding FCPA and the UK Bribery Act compliance in connection with a multimillion-dollar contract with an Arabic company
Represented a major Taiwanese company related to its acquisition of a U.S. company which involved complicated bankruptcy procedures, setting up joint ventures with several U.S. companies and review of Foreign Trade Commission
Representing a U.S. company with market entry and negotiation with distribution agreements with distributors in China, India, Korea and Germany
Represented a major U.S. medical company related to its collaboration agreement and technology license with a major Chinese insurance company and medical facilities
Represented a major U.S. financial institution in connection with its acquisition of another company which conducts substantial business in China
Represented a major U.S. medical company related to market entry in China and intellectual property protection in China
Represented a U.S. company in negotiating certain investment agreements and supplier agreements with a Chinese manufacturer
Represented a Chinese company in setting up a Representative Office in Vietnam
Represented a major Chinese steel manufacturer related to its acquisition of a division of a U.S. company
Represented a major Chinese mineral production company related to its acquisition of a spinoff of a U.S. company and related environmental compliance issues
Represented a Chinese automobile accessories company in setting up a U.S. joint venture with a U.S. company.
Represented a U.S. company in entering into a collaboration agreement and joint venture agreement with a Chinese company for certain energy business
Advised a U.S. client on Chinese business law related to its potential acquisition of a Chinese company and conducted due diligence of the Chinese company under Chinese law
Represented a U.S. client and negotiated certain investment agreements, subscription agreements and lending agreements with Chinese companies under Chinese law
Represented a U.S. client in connection with its withdrawal of capital investment in a Chinese company and drafted related agreements and notes under both U.S. and Chinese law
Advised a dual citizenship client in connection with their purchase of a multimillion property in Taiwan and related tax issues
Obtained settlement that the client, a major Chinese technology company, found favorable in a breach of Know-How Transfer Agreement, fraud and negligent misrepresentation case
Successfully enforced a foreign judgment against a US debtor and obtained full recovery, including attorneys’ fees, on behalf of the client. The action involved investigation of a potential multi-dollar investment from a Chinese company to the debtor.
Obtained settlement in a breach of contract, fraud and wire fraud case on behalf of a major Chinese car dealer and recovered full damages on behalf of the client. The representation included securing FBI investigation on behalf of the client.
Obtained settlement that the client, a major insurance company, found favorable in an insurance coverage suit involving claimed damages in the aggregate of over $1.6 billion. The representation included conducting investigations in China, preparing witnesses in China and Hong Kong, taking/defending depositions in Hong Kong and advising client on Chinese business and maritime law.
Represented a Chinese home and garden company in a breach of contract case against a U.S. company, as well as defending the breach of contract, Lanham Act claim, unfair competition and tortious interference with contract counterclaims asserted by the U.S. company.
Represented a Chinese beauty product manufacturer in a breach of contract and fraud case against a U.S. company.
Successfully represented a U.S. company in an eighteen (18) month hearing before the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board involving complicated legal issues under the Pennsylvania gaming law, comparison of the regulation of a licensee in Hong Kong with the regulation of a registered investment adviser in the United States, as well as a comparison of the regulation of an investment company in the Cayman Islands with the regulation of an investment company in the United States.
Represented a U.S. company in analyzing whether China, Japan and Turkey are gray/black market and gaming investments in China, Japan and Turkey.
Widener University School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude, 2011
Widener University School of Law, LL.M., with honors, 2008
Southwest University of Political Science and Law, Chongqing, China, LL.M., summa cum laude, 2008
Southwest University of Political Science and Law, Chongqing, China, LL.B., summa cum laude, 2005
Sichuan International Studies University, B.A., 2005
People’s Republic of China
Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania
District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
Court of International Trade
City & State Pennsylvania, AAPI Power 100, 2023
Pittsburgh Magazine + Pump, 40 Under 40, Class of 2022
Pittsburgh Business Times, 20 People to Know in Law, 2021
National Asian Pacific American Bar Association Leadership Advancement Program 2020, Fellow
Allegheny County Bar Association and Allegheny County Bar Foundation, Pro Bono Achievement Award, 2018
Widener University School of Law, Lucinda Peipher Memorial Award, 2011
Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Pennsylvania: Board Member (2015 – Present), Secretary (2020-2022)
National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (2015 – Present)
Allegheny County Bar Association: Past Chair – Asian Attorneys Committee, Past Chair – Diversity and Inclusion Committee; Past Executive Council – Women in the Law Division
Chinese Association for Science and Technology of Pittsburgh (CAST-P), President (2023)
Chinese Association for Science and Technology (CAST-USA), Advisory Board (2023)
“The U.S. Chips Act and the New Export Control Rules on Chips – Ongoing Shift in Tech Relations with China and Impact on Licensing”, Licensing Executive Society International Annual Meeting, May 2, 2023
“The Impact of U.S. International Trade / Investment Regulations on the Bioscience Industry”, Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL) Club, December 6, 2022
“U.S. International Trade Regulation and Semiconductor/Chip Manufacturing Industry”, Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL) Club, October 27, 2022
“U.S. China Trade War – Outlook for IP Licensing & Tech Transfer”, Licensing Executive Society U.S. and Canada 2022 Annual Meeting, October 17, 2022
“Taking Your Business Global”, U.S. Small Business Administration, June 8, 2022
“U.S. and China Cross border E-Commerce Conference”, China Construction Bank, May 24, 2022
“U.S. Import and Customs Protection Measures and Tariff Schemes”, Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL) Club, May 27, 2022
“Overview of the U.S. Import and Customs Law and Regulations”, Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL) Club, April 19, 2022
“Latest Russia Export Controls and Sanctions Update”, Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL) Club, April 13, 2022
“Understanding the U.S. and European Sanctions on Russia”, CASTP Organization, March 6, 2022
“Overview of U.S. and Multinational Sanctions on Russia,” Southwest University of Political Science and Law (SWUPL) Club, March 2, 2022
“U.S. Legislative Agenda Re: China,” US-China Series, Jan. 24, 2022
“Overview of U.S. Export Controls and Economic Sanctions,” Southwest University of Political Science and Law, Jan. 16, 2022
“US Export Controls: Current Events & Future Trends,” Greater Columbus Chinese Chamber of Commerce, Greater Cleveland Chinese Chamber of Commerce and America China Society of Indiana, Nov. 4, 2021
“Licensing in China – How to License, Protect Your IP and Get Paid,” Licensing Executive Society U.S. and Canada 2021 Annual Virtual Meeting, Sept. 30, 2021
“Common Legal Issues to Consider with Cross-Border E-Commerce,” 2021 China Cross-Border E-Commerce Fair, Sept. 23, 2021
“Advocating for the Asian and Asian American and Pacific Islander Communities at Pitt,” University of Pittsburgh Diversity Forum 2021, July 29, 2021
“Challenges & Opportunities for E-Commerce, Supply Chain and Logistics,” Midwest USA Chinese Chamber of Commerce, June 18, 2021
“Be an Actionable Communicator for the AAPI Communities,” PRSA Pittsburgh, May 26, 2021
“China Policy and Business Webinar,” American China Society of Indiana, Greater Cleveland Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Columbus Chinese Chambers of Commerce, April 21, 2021
“Import/Export – Legal and Financial Advice for Your Business Start-Up,” Widener University Small Business Development Center, Jan. 12, 2021
“Leaders of Today and Tomorrow: Silence is Not Leadership,” Pittsburgh Leadership Conference 2020, Oct. 21, 2020
“Chongqing Department of Justice Chongqing Linkong Policy and Legal Service International Center,” Chongqing Department of Justice Chongqing Linkong Policy and Legal Service International Center, Oct. 16, 2020
“Energy Supply Chain Disruption and Impacts: Perspectives on How Businesses Build and Sustain Value,” Carnegie Mellon University Webinar Series: Energy and Resilience, Sept. 17, 2020
“Investing in the PRC Senior Living Industry,” Greater Columbus Chinese Chamber of Commerce, Aug. 18, 2020
“The U.S. Export Control Compliance Program,” SWUPL Club Webinar, Aug. 16, 2020
“Pandemic and Elections: Recent Changes in Immigration and Visa Bans,” North Carolina Chinese Scholars Sino-American Exchange Association, North Carolina Chinese Association, United Chinese Americans, July 26, 2020
“The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States – What Chinese Companies Should be Aware of?” Southwest University of Political Science and Law, Tianfu College, July 9, 2020
“What to Know About the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States – Challenges and Strategies for Foreign Investment in the United States,” Southwest University of Political Science and Law, World and America Lecture Series, July 5, 2020
“New Era Post COVID-19 – North America Immigration and Investment Forum,” Chengdu Institute of World Affairs, July 3, 2020
“The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States – New Challenges for Foreign Investment,” Beijing LongAn Law Firm Lecture Series, June 24, 2020
“The Impact of Coronavirus on Employment Law and HR Compliance in China,” American Bar Association, March 25, 2020
“Diversity and Inclusion: Immigrant and Refugee Rights,” World Affairs Council Emerging Global Leadership Forum, June 2019
“Strategies for IP Protection in China: What Pittsburgh-area Businesses Need to Know,” USPTO & U.S. Commercial Service China IP Roadshow, May 9, 2019
“Global Trade Under Stress,” iCourt, March 2019
“International Law Firm Management,” Chengdu Jinjiang Bar Association Annual Meeting, December 2017
“Recent Supreme Court Rulings Define Where Companies May be Sued,” Generic
Pharmaceuticals and Biosimilars Summit, October 2017
“Whose Country is This? Hate Speech, Harassment and Violence Post-election,” Allegheny County Bar Association, April 2017
“Dispute Resolution Related to Chinese Companies’ Investment in the United States,” International Investment Forum, November 2017
“China implements its long-awaited unreliable entities list,” China Business Review, Oct. 7, 2020
“Force majeure in the time of coronavirus,” Chief Executive, March 13, 2020
“Determining the country of origin is key during the U.S.-China trade war,” Material Handling & Logistics, Oct. 23, 2019
“Companies in the crosshairs? China to enact its own export controls,” China Business Review, Aug. 7, 2019
“China’s amended investment law leaves some details vague,” Law360, June 6, 2019
“The new rules of tax residency: A potential trap for foreigners?” China Business Review, May 15, 2019
“United States civil procedure,” International Civil Procedure, Chapter 14, Juris Legal Information, November 2017
“Can foreign banks be forced to freeze accounts?” Law360, Feb. 5, 2016
“The state of general personal jurisdiction after ‘Daimler,’” The Legal Intelligencer, Jan. 26, 2016