Michael H. Stein, a former general counsel of the U.S. International Trade Commission who retired as a senior partner with the law firm of Dewey Ballantine, died Sept. 23 at his home in Shady Side, Md. He was 71.

The cause was septicemia, said his wife, Eileen Stein.

Mr. Stein spent his early career at the Justice Department, working in the civil division’s appellate section. From 1977 to 1984, he was general counsel of the trade commission, where he worked to block the importation of goods from abroad that infringed on U.S. patent rights.

He then joined the Washington office of Dewey Ballantine, where his clients included steel, lumber and semiconductor manufacturers. He specialized in helping U.S. companies when foreign businesses exported and sold goods at prices substantially below domestic prices, often because the wares had been subsidized by their governments.

By the time he retired in 2007, he was working part time “of counsel” to the law firm.

Michael Henry Stein, a native of New Haven, Conn., was a 1964 honors graduate of Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania and a 1968 graduate of Columbia Law School. He and his wife then spent two years as lecturers in law at the what was then the University of Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland in southern Africa under the auspices of the International Legal Center, a New York-based foundation.

In 1988, Mr. Stein moved from Chevy Chase to the Anne Arundel County community of Shady Side and enjoyed sailing on the Chesapeake Bay. He was a founding board member of West/Rhode Riverkeeper, an anti-pollution organization.

Survivors include his wife of 48 years, Eileen McGinley Stein of Shady Side; and a sister.

— Adam Bernstein