OPIC is the U.S. Government's development finance institution. It mobilizes private capital to help solve critical world challenges and in doing so, advances U.S. foreign policy. OPIC works with the U.S. private sector, it helps U.S. businesses gain footholds in emerging markets catalyzing revenues, jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. OPIC achieves its mission by providing investors with financing, guarantees, political risk insurance, and support for private equity investment funds. OPIC projects have generated $74 billion in U.S. exports and supported more than 275,000 American jobs.
Department of Legal Affairs
OPIC’s Department of Legal Affairs, consisting of approximately twenty attorneys and supported by ten legal professionals, interacts with every department at OPIC and plays an important role with respect to OPIC’s overall program. OPIC lawyers draft project finance and investment funds legal documentation, review political risk insurance contracts, negotiate with investors and their counsel on the details of finance, funds and insurance transactions, and determine liability and the extent of compensation due in claims on OPIC insurance policies. The Department represents OPIC in any negotiations with foreign governments, including settlement of OPIC’s claims against the government after OPIC has compensated an insured investor. In the event of a dispute under an insurance policy, the Department may represent OPIC in arbitration, the dispute resolution mechanism called for in OPIC insurance contracts. When OPIC uses outside counsel (for example, local counsel in a project country), OPIC lawyers select and supervise retained attorneys. Finally, OPIC depends on the Department to provide any legal advice it may require as a corporation on a wide range of general corporate, legislative, and administrative matters. For a law student interested in finance and the legal aspects of international business transactions, an OPIC internship provides exposure to many facets of international investment, from structuring project financings to the assessment of political risks and evaluation of claims in connection with OPIC’s insurance contracts. An internship with OPIC’s Department of Legal Affairs gives students a comprehensive overview of the operations and effectiveness of OPIC programs in support of international transactions.
The internship is an opportunity for practical application of legal principles in such areas as corporate law, administrative law, public international law, international business transactions, insurance, banking, and finance. Law student interns help OPIC’s attorneys advise OPIC in matters relating to insurance, finance, investment funds and administration. The majority of the work performed by interns is comparable to that of a first-year associate at a law firm transactional practice and also includes legal research and writing projects. The Department makes every effort to match required research assignments to our interns’ areas of particular interest.