Navigating the ITAR License Proviso Reconsideration Process: A Comprehensive Guide

Submitting an International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) license proviso reconsideration request can be a complex and delicate process. The ITAR governs the export and transfer of defense articles and services, and license provisos are conditions or limitations imposed on these licenses. When you believe a proviso is unjust or no longer necessary, it’s crucial to know how to navigate the reconsideration process effectively.

Step 1: Determine the Need for Reconsideration

Before diving into the process, carefully assess whether reconsideration is necessary. Some common reasons for seeking reconsideration include changes in the scope of the authorized activity, the proviso rendering the license unworkable, technological advancements, or newly available information that makes the proviso obsolete. Ensure you have a valid and well-founded reason for requesting reconsideration.

Step 2: Gather Necessary Documentation

Thorough documentation is the cornerstone of a successful reconsideration request. Collect all relevant documents, including:

  • The original ITAR license with the proviso in question.
  • Any supporting materials submitted with the initial application.
  • Detailed information on why the proviso should be reconsidered, including any technical or operational justifications.
  • Any supporting documentation, such as updated drawings, specifications, or data.

Step 3: Engage the USG

Meeting with the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) and the Defense Technology Security Administration (DTSA) to identify which USG office imposed the proviso on your license is crucial.  That way you can engage the appropriate USG office to identify why they included the specific provisos in question.  Your rationale may then be able to address their concerns in a different way.

Step 4: Draft a Comprehensive Request

Craft a well-structured and detailed request for reconsideration. Your request should include:

  • A clear statement of the proviso to be reconsidered.
  • A concise explanation of why reconsideration is warranted, supported by evidence.
  • Any legal arguments, if applicable.
  • Proposed revisions or alternatives, if any.

Step 5: Submit the Request

Submit your request to DDTC. Ensure that your submission is complete and complies with all requirements outlined in the ITAR.

Step 6: Follow-Up and Maintain Communication

After submitting your request, it’s essential to maintain open lines of communication with DDTC, DTSA and the USG office that put the proviso on your license in the first place. Be prepared to provide additional information or clarification if requested.

Step 7: Await DDTC’s Decision

DDTC will review your reconsideration request thoroughly. Be patient during this process, as it may take time for a decision to be reached.

Step 8: Comply with Any New Conditions or Provisos

If DDTC grants your reconsideration request and imposes new conditions or provisos, ensure that you fully understand and comply with these requirements.


Navigating the ITAR license proviso reconsideration process requires careful planning, documentation, and compliance with regulations. It’s essential to have a valid reason for seeking reconsideration and to provide compelling evidence to support your request. By following these steps and adhering to the ITAR, you can increase your chances of a successful outcome and ensure that your export activities align with USG approvals. Remember that ITAR experts can provide invaluable guidance throughout this process, ensuring your compliance with complex regulations.