Doing Business in the US – Know Before You Go!

10th April 2018

An informal roundtable discussion with US experts including Principal Officer of the US Consulate General in Edinburgh, Susan A. Wilson, to discuss the nuts and bolts of starting out in business in the US, reviewing essential information for UK businesses expanding into the US, and those who have customers, suppliers, or interests in the United States.

The event will take place on 27th April from 8.30am - 10.45am at MBM Commercial, 125 Princes Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4AD

The discussion will include:

  • The parameters of the US Visa Waiver Program (ESTA) for Business Travel
  • What can a person do in the United States as a Business Visitor and when does he/she need a work visa?
  • What exposure/liability do UK businesses and employees face if they get it wrong?
  • What do businesses need to do to get it right?
  • When and why does a business need to establish a US presence?

Roundtable Experts:

Susan A. Wilson, Principal Officer of the United States Consulate General in Edinburgh

Susan Wilson is the Principal Officer of the U.S. Consulate General in Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom, a role she has held since August 2015. As Head of the Consulate, Susan is responsible for all American Citizen Services in Scotland, and promoting the U.S.-Scotland relationship.

A native of Richmond, Virginia, Susan previously served as the Public Affairs Officer at the U.S. Consulate in Adana, Turkey, where her main priorities were encouraging the internal peace process in Turkey's volatile southeastern region, and working to alleviate spillover effects in Turkey from the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Syria. She has also served as Assistant Public Affairs Officer in Ljubljana, Slovenia; and as Vice Consul in Kingston, Jamaica.

Prior to joining the State Department, Susan was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Jizzak, Uzbekistan, and also taught as an adjunct History instructor at Germanna Community College in Fredericksburg, Virginia. She holds a B.A. in Medieval Studies from Georgetown University and an M.A. in medieval history from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Olivia McLaren, US immigration lawyer, Olivia McLaren Ltd

Olivia McLaren is a U.S. qualified attorney admitted to the bar of the State of New York. After working in U.S. immigration and nationality law in New York City for a decade, Olivia moved to Edinburgh in 2014 and established Olivia McLaren, Ltd., a practice dedicated to strategic immigration assistance for businesses wishing to establish or strengthen a U.S. presence and individuals interested in visiting, working in or immigrating to the United States of America. Olivia has extensive experience representing businesses and individuals in U.S. immigration proceedings, including visa applications, permanent residence applications, naturalization applications, removal proceedings and federal litigation.

Tracey Ginn, US Corporate Attorney, MBM Commercial LLP

Tracey has over 25 years of experience as a corporate and business lawyer in both the UK and US, having practised law in the US for 12 years including latterly as a partner in an AmLaw 100 firm. She is dual-qualified as a California attorney and Scottish solicitor.

During her years of practice, Tracey has developed significant deal experience and works efficiently and effectively alongside clients to navigate the legal process and negotiate on their behalf, always aiming to meet the clients’ goals. Tracey advises businesses on the variety of legal issues that arise in the course of doing business. Her broad experience includes working with many industries and types of business in both the UK and the US and advising on novel and complex structures. This experience is very useful in helping clients meet the changing needs of the marketplace.

Tracey brings a valuable perspective to cross-border transactions and is adept at advising clients as they expand overseas. She regularly guides businesses entering new territories, in particular the US, and her background as a dual-qualified UK and US lawyer means that she is well-versed in advising on the corporate and regulatory environment in both places.

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