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Support Anti-terrorism by Fostering Effective Technologies Act of 2002
Special Announcements
S&T has noticed an increasing trend of applications that do not possess sufficient information for the Office of SAFETY Act Implementation (OSAI) to fully evaluate the capability and effectiveness of the technology under review. Therefore, we are issuing this reminder to all applicants and ask that you answer all questions in the application forms and provide the appropriate supporting attachments. If there is not enough information for OSAI to evaluate the technology you are applying for, your application will be deemed incomplete. OSAI will continue to assist you in preparing your application. We urge you to make use of our pre-application process prior to submitting a full application.

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Q: What is the SAFETY Act?

A: As part of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Public Law 107-296, Congress enacted several levels of liability protection for providers of anti-terrorism technologies. The SAFETY Act ("the Act") provides incentives for the development and deployment of anti-terrorism technologies by creating a system of "risk management" and a system of "litigation management." The purpose of the Act is to ensure that the threat of liability does not deter potential manufacturers or Sellers of anti-terrorism technologies from developing, commercializing, and deploying technologies that could significantly reduce the risks or mitigate the effects of large-scale terrorist events. Thus, the Act creates certain liability limitations for "claims arising out of, relating to, or resulting from an Act of Terrorism" where Qualified Anti-Terrorism Technologies have been deployed. The Act does not limit liability for harms caused by anti-terrorism technologies when no Act of Terrorism has occurred.

Q: What is a Notice of Modification and when is it appropriate to submit a Notice of Modification?

A: A Notice of Modification should be submitted if the Seller makes or intends to make any a significant modification to the Technology that falls outside the scope of the Designation and, as applicable, Certification. Immaterial or routine modifications that are within the scope of the protections do not require notice. Applicants can submit a Notice of Modification to confirm if a change is considered within the scope of an existing Designation and Certification. However, the Seller is required to inform the Department of any significant modifications to the Technology. There are two types of Modification: Technical Modification and Insurance Petition. Either type of Modification uses the same Notice of Modification form. An example of the Technical Modification would be if an additional business entity (e.g., a sister company, a corporate parent, or an unrelated company) provides technical input to, or insurance coverage for, the Technology and wishes to be listed as an additional Seller, or if the Seller changes its legal name and/or moves its corporate residence to other state from the original state of incorporation. When an unrelated company is proposed to be listed as an additional Seller through the Technical Modification, the technology, insurance, and financial information applicable to the new Seller usually needs to be submitted, including the impact the Modification will have on the functioning and sales of the Technology. In summary, when there are significant changes in the functionality, capability, component, or provision (including design, engineering, manufacturing, etc.) of the Technology in a way deviating from the current scope of the Designation and, as applicable, Certification, the Seller is required to file a Technical Modification. Insurance Petition may be submitted to the Department if the Seller desires to revise the current insurance coverage requirement. The Insurance Petition should include a basis or explanation of why the required insurance needs to be revised, e.g., unanticipated hardship in obtaining and/or maintaining the required insurance limit due to sudden changes in the insurance market, drastic changes in the projections of future Technology revenue, worsening of overall business environments, etc.

Q: What is a Transfer Application and when is it appropriate to submit a Transfer Application?

A: Any SAFETY Act protections may be transferred and assigned to any other person, firm, or other entity (“Transferee”) to which the current Seller (“Transferor”) transfers or assigns the right, title, and interest in and to the SAFETY Act protected Technology, including the intellectual property rights therein. The Transferee initiates the process by filing an Application for Transfer of Designation form. Once the application for transfer is deemed effective, the Transferee will be deemed to be a Seller in the place and stead of the Transferor for all purposes under the SAFETY Act. One typical example requiring the submission of a Transfer Application is an acquisition of the Seller or the Technology by another company that is independent from the Seller. Taking over the Seller or the Technology by and within the Seller’s sister company or corporate parent is not usually viewed as a Transfer and may be instead handled by a Notice of Modification. As a rule of thumb, when a merger and acquisition involving the Seller or the Technology takes place, a Transfer Application needs to be filed by the surviving or purchasing entity, which naturally becomes the Transferee. When a company takes over the existing Technology from the Seller and bundles it into a new Technology in scope and functionality by adding its own business contracts, engineering, and/or technology components, it is not viewed as a Transfer but as a new application for Designation and, as applicable, Certification.

Q: What is the benefit of the SAFETY Act for my Technology?

A: The SAFETY Act creates a system of risk and litigation management designed to ensure that the threat of liability in the event of an Act of Terrorism does not deter potential manufacturers or sellers of anti-terrorism technologies from developing, commercializing, and deploying technologies that could save lives.

Q: How does the SAFETY Act define an "Act of Terrorism"?

A: Pursuant to the SAFETY Act, an Act of Terrorism is: ACT OF TERRORISM- (A) The term "act of terrorism" means any act that the Secretary determines meets the requirements under subparagraph (b) of the Act, as such requirements are further defined and specified by the Secretary. REQUIREMENTS- (B) An act meets the requirements of this subparagraph if the act- (i) is unlawful; (ii) causes harm to a person, property, or entity, in the United States, or in the case of a domestic United States air carrier or a United States-flag vessel (or a vessel based principally in the United States on which the United States income tax is paid and whose insurance coverage is subject to regulation in the United States), in or outside the United States; and (iii) uses or attempts to use instrumentalities, weapons or other methods designed or intended to cause mass destruction, injury or other loss to citizens or institutions of the United States.

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