Ian R. Macdonald



Ian R. Macdonald focuses his practice on developing, assessing and managing global mobility programs for multinational companies on a range of challenges affecting the movement of people capital domestically and internationally, including secondment agreements, benefits transferability, local host country employment concerns and immigration.

Ian and his team work closely with companies to manage and modify, where needed, corporate immigration programs to maximize efficiency, service and regulatory compliance levels. He is experienced with the full range of business immigration sponsorship categories (visas and permanent residence), anti-discrimination rules to reduce or eliminate risk of employment litigation, employer sanction cases, and I-9 and E-Verify compliance. Ian assists clients with establishing risk-based performance standards (RBPS) and Department of Homeland Security protocol, providing risk assessment assistance to corporations subject to Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) and assisting clients with ITAR/Export Control compliance within the immigration context.

Ian has developed strategic relationships abroad that he utilizes when working with clients to ensure compliance with foreign registration requirements. He is experienced with analyzing complex global mobility opportunities on country-specific matters to facilitate the transfer of personnel. Ian is also experienced in counseling employers on immigration strategy as well as immigration consequences of mergers and acquisitions, reduction in workforces, and furloughs.

Prior to joining the firm, Ian worked for the United Nations, various non-governmental think tanks and corporate law firms in London, Washington, D.C., New York and Atlanta.

Awards & Recognition

•Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, Georgia Super Lawyers, 2017
•Listed, The Best Lawyers in America, Litigation - Labor and Employment, 2016-2017
•Listed, U.S. News - Best Lawyers Best Law Firm rankings for Nationwide (Tier 1), 2011-2015
•Listed, The Legal 500 United States, Labor and Employment - Immigration, 2009-2016
•Listed, Georgia Trend magazine Legal Elite, 2015-2016

Articles, Publications, & Lectures

Articles & Publications

•Co-Author, Employment Laws Update , Vineyard & Winery Management, January-February 2017
•Quoted, The Biggest Immigration Cases of 2016 , Law360, December 16, 2016
•Quoted, The Trump Era Could Mean Big Changes For Biz Immigration , Law360, December 13, 2016
•Quoted, Five Employment Visa Issues to Watch In a Trump Presidency, Corporate Counsel, December 7, 2016
•Co-Author, Wine Businesses Can't Outsource Liability for Labor Practices, North Bay Business Journal, October 10, 2016
•Quoted, New L-1 Visa Form Probes Further into Work History , Society for Human Resource Management, August 26, 2016
•Quoted, Proposed 'Social Media ID, Please' Law Draws Outrage , Computerworld, August 25, 2016
•Author, Too Little, Maybe Too Late: The Real Impact of Ending the STEM OPT Program, Daily Report, February 8, 2016
•Quoted, How a Little-Known Program for Foreign Students Became Embroiled in a Hot-Button National Debate, Chronicle of Higher Education, January 20, 2016
•Quoted, 4 Takeaways from OSC's Letter on Contracted Workers, Law360, January 7, 2016
•Quoted, Immigration Regulation and Legislation to Watch in 2016, Law360, December 24, 2015
•Quoted, OPT Rule Nabs Broad Praise, But Some Groups Cry Foul, Law360, November 20, 2015
•Co-Author, Recent Lawsuit Reminds Employers to Offer the Same or Higher Wages and Benefits to H-1B Workers as U.S. Workers, Inside Business Immigration, November 11, 2015
•Quoted, Fine Reductions Continue Under New OCAHO Judge, Law 360, November 9, 2015
•Editor, No. 1 Immigration Blog (Traffic), Inside Business Immigration , LexBlog Am Law 200 Blog Benchmark Report, 2015
•Editor, No. 22 Overall Blog of 962 Unique Blogs (Traffic), Inside Business Immigration , LexBlog Am Law 200 Blog Benchmark Report, 2015
•Quoted, Visa Bulletin Resolution Could Follow Path From 2007, Law360, October 1, 2015
•Quoted, White House faces tight deadlines for saving STEM program , Computerworld, September 8, 2015
•Quoted, New L-1B Policy Takes Effect Aug. 31, Society for Human Resource Management Online, August 31, 2015
•Quoted, Ruling Could Spell Disaster for Foreign STEM Workers , Corporate Counsel, August 20, 2015
•Quoted, Working STEM Students May Be Forced to Leave U.S. Next Year, Says Court, Computerworld, August 14, 2015
•Quoted, Guidance on H-1B Work Moves Leaves Penalties in Play, Law360, July 22, 2015
•Author, Premium Processing of H-1B Extension Petitions Resumes Service After Temporary Suspension , Inside Business Immigration, July 13, 2015
•Author, USCIS Requires DACA Recipients Receiving 3-Year EAD's After 2/16/2015 to Return EADs by 7/17/2015 , Inside Business Immigration, July 10, 2015
•Author, DOS August 2015 Visa Bulletin - Some Progression , Inside Business Immigration, July 10, 2015
•Author, State Department Shifting E-1 and E-2 Visa Processing Locations in Mexico to Provide Applicants with Higher Levels of Service , Inside Business Immigration, July 8, 2015
•Author, DHS Launches eFOIA App in Push to Reduce Backlog and Improve Customer Experience , Inside Business Immigration, July 8, 2015
•Author, TPS extension for Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone , Inside Business Immigration, June 26, 2015
•Author, I-9 Alert: Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Nepal Announced , Inside Business Immigration, June 25, 2015
•Quoted, Visa Review Stymied For Now, But More Challenges May Come, Law360, June 15, 2015
•Quoted, Attys React to Term's Final High Court Immigration Rulings, Law360, June 15, 2015
•Quoted, 6 Pro Tips for Submitting L-1B Visa Petitions, Law360, June 12, 2015
•Quoted, Q&A With Greenberg Traurig's Ian Macdonald, Law360, June 5, 2015
•Author, Federal Register Announces TPS Extended for Somalia - I-9 Update , Inside Business Immigration, June 5, 2015
•Author, DHS Aims to Expand CBP Preclearance Operations to 10 Additional Airports Abroad , Inside Business Immigration, June 1, 2015
•Quoted, AAO Work Site Ruling Still Troubles Attys, Despite Guidance, Law360, May 22, 2015
•Author, Long-Awaited Guidance on L-1B Visa Category Released, The Corporate Counselor, May 2015
•Quoted, If H-1B Work Location Changes, Employers Now Must Amend Petitions, Society for Human Resource Management Online, April 23, 2015
•Author, May 2015 Visa Bulletin Updates , Inside Business Immigration, April 16, 2015
•Quoted, H-1B Site Change Ruling Spells Trouble for IT Employers, Law360, April 15, 2015
•Author, This Year's H-1B Cap - 233,000 Petitions Received by USCIS , Inside Business Immigration, April 14, 2015
•Co-Author, EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY: Restrictive AAO Decision Finds Change of Work Area Requires H-1B Amendment Filing , Inside Business Immigration, April 13, 2015
•Quoted, Which Lawmakers Will Take the Reins on Immigration? Law 360, April 10, 2015
•Quoted, New L-1B Visa Guidelines a Mixed Bag for Employers, Daily Business Review, April 9, 2015
•Co-Author, As Expected: 2016 H-1B Cap Met, USCIS to Conduct Lottery , Inside Business Immigration, April 8, 2015
•Quoted, New L-1B Visa Guidelines a Mixed Bag for Employers , Corporate Counsel, April 1, 2015
•Quoted, Stronger Economy Means More H-1B Petitions For 85K Slots, Law360, April 1, 2015
•Co-Author, Was it Worth the Wait? USCIS Releases Guidance on L-1B Visa Category , Inside Business Immigration, March 25, 2015
•Quoted, Immigration Executive Actions an Ethical Minefield for Attys, Law360, March 16, 2015
•Quoted, 3 Tips From Attys to Improve the E-Verify Program, Law360, March 9, 2015
•Quoted, 4 Tips For Employers Looking To Boost Ranks With L-1B Visas, Law360, March 6, 2015
•Quoted, H-1B Spouses Now Can Work in the US Too, Corporate Counsel, March 3, 2015
•Author, Fiscal Year 2016 H-1B Cap, The Corporate Counselor, March 2015
•Co-Author, Work Authorization for (Some, But Not All) H-4 Visa Holders , Inside Business Immigration, February 24, 2015
•Quoted, Experts Predict Record-Breaking H-1B Visa Demand, HR Magazine, February 20, 2015
•Author, Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Present at Houston Totally Expat Show , Inside Business Immigration, February 12, 2015
•Author, Greenberg Traurig Webinar Covers 'Everything You Want to Know About Immigration Compliance' , Inside Business Immigration, February 11, 2015
•Quoted, Turbulent Times in Hydrocarbon-Rich Areas Call for Preparation, Exploration & Production magazine, February 9, 2015
•Co-Author, Prepare Now for Fiscal Year 2016 H-1B Cap , Inside Business Immigration, January 21, 2015?


•Speaker, H-1B Visa Season Filing and Compliance for Employers, C4CM, March 4, 2014
•Speaker, Immigration Update, Employer Aid 2013: A Year in Review and a Look Forward, GT Labor & Employment Seminar, Phoenix, AZ, October 2, 2013
•Speaker, Immigration Reform and Federal/State Compliance from an Employer's Perspective, Society for Human Resource Management - Atlanta, April 30, 2013
•Speaker, The New I-9 Form and Compliance Challenges, HR.com Webinar, April 30, 2013

Associated News & Events

Press Releases

02.23.17 40 Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Listed in 2017 Edition of Georgia Super Lawyers Magazine; Lori Cohen Ranked #3

06.16.16 100-Plus Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Recommended in The Legal 500 United States Guide to Outstanding Lawyers

12.10.15 16 Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Included in Georgia Trend's Legal Elite List Across 11 Categories

08.27.15 19 Greenberg Traurig Atlanta Attorneys Recognized in 2016 Best Lawyers in America

07.27.15 Two Greenberg Traurig Blogs Earn Top Rankings from 2015 LexBlog Am Law 200 Blog Benchmark Report

06.08.15 100-Plus Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Recommended in The Legal 500 United States 2015 Guide to Outstanding Lawyers

09.08.14 Greenberg Traurig Labor & Employment Practice Receives Multiple Recognitions

07.15.14 Greenberg Traurig Ranked in 2014 Legal 500 United States Guide

10.04.13 Greenberg Traurig Expands Global Immigration Practice With Prominent Atlanta Attorneys Immigration Practice Expands Presence in Atlanta

09.30.13 Greenberg Traurig Attracts Littler Immigration Attorneys

Published Articles

01.10.17 Employment Laws Update: Understanding these five issues will ensure your business' labor force is within federal compliance

10.10.16 Wine businesses can't outsource liability for labor practices

02.08.16 Too Little, Maybe Too Late: The Real Impact of Ending the STEM OPT Program

03.27.14 Hidden Employment Risks In 3rd-Party IT Sourcing


02.17.17 Employer Guidance - National Immigrant Protests

07.07.16 Brexit: Immigration and Emigration

01.21.15 Fiscal Year 2016 H-1B Cap - You've Been Warned, Now Here Are This Year's Key Dates

01.13.15 Keeping You Up-to-Date: GT Immigration Newsletter (January 2015)

12.15.14 Inside Business Immigration: Weekly News Round Up, Dec. 8-12, 2014

11.10.14 Inside Business Immigration: Weekly News Round Up, Nov. 3-7, 2014

10.27.14 Inside Business Immigration: Weekly News Round Up, Oct. 20-24, 2014

10.13.14 Inside Business Immigration: Weekly News Round Up, Oct. 6-10, 2014

10.06.14 Inside Business Immigration: Weekly News Round Up, Sept. 29 - Oct. 3, 2014

10.01.14 Keeping You Up-to-Date: GT Immigration Newsletter (October 2014)

Areas of Practice (6)

  • Business Immigration & Compliance
  • Global Human Capital Solutions
  • Labor & Employment
  • Global
  • Global - Africa Practice
  • Retail

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
678.553.2467  Phone
678.553.2212  Fax
University Attended:
The New School, B.A., 1996
Law School Attended:
American University Washington College of Law, J.D., 1999
Year of First admission:
2000, New York; 2009, Georgia

Professional & Community Involvement

•Member, American Immigration Lawyers Association

Birth Information:
London, United Kingdom, 1970

Peer Reviews

  • 4.7/5.0 (2)
  • Peer Reviewed
  • Legal Knowledge

  • Analytical Capability

  • Judgment

  • Communication

  • Legal Experience

  • Ian R. Macdonald

    5.0/5.0 by a Member on 04/24/14 in Immigration and Naturalization on 04/24/14

    • Legal Knowledge

    • Analytical Capability

    • Judgment

    • Communication

    • Legal Experience

    Read less
  • Ian R. Macdonald

    4.4/5.0 by a Senior Associate on 04/24/14 in Immigration and Naturalization on 04/24/14

    • Legal Knowledge

    • Analytical Capability

    • Judgment

    • Communication

    • Legal Experience

    Read less

*Peer Reviews provided before April 15, 2008 are not displayed.

Client Reviews

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Atlanta, Georgia

  • Atlanta, GA
    Terminus 200 , Terminus 200, 3333 Piedmont Road NE, Suite 2500
    Atlanta, GA 30305

    678.553.2467 Phone

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