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On an equal footing with permanent employees in NY

Attorney Louise Sørensen was seconded to the law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York from January to July 2020. There she was immediately considered part of the team and given responsibility for the department’s finance cases.

“I expected that my stay would be professionally challenging and that, together with my American colleagues, I would have the opportunity to assist clients with complex financial transactions. My expectations of the stay were fully met,” says Louise Sørensen.

Part of the team

As a visiting attorney, she was part of the firm’s Restructuring and Finance department, where she handled, among other things, acquisition financing and major refinancing matters, including the raising of new capital directly derived from Covid-19.

“I was considered part of the team on an equal footing with the permanent associates, and I was assigned responsibility for the department’s finance cases from my first day,” she says.

Quick transition to working from home

Louise Sørensen moved to New York shortly before the Covid-19 pandemic really took off, and New York was proclaimed the American epicentre. Therefore, she only had a few months to work in Wachtell’s Midtown Manhattan offices before she had to work from home like so many others.

“It was a challenge not to have daily contact with my colleagues. Luckily, at Wachtell they were good at organising virtual events such as the weekly Friday bar, training events, wine and beer tastings and cooking classes. They also ensured that in our teams we were in daily contact not only by email, but also by phone and/or via Zoom. It was impressive to experience the firm’s quick and efficient transition to working from home,” she says.

Strengthened international profile

Although her time in New York did not turn out quite as expected, she still looks back on the secondment as a very special experience, and she has no doubt that she learnt a lot both professionally and personally from living in New York and working alongside some of the best lawyers in the US on some of the biggest and most complex finance cases.

“Through my secondment at Wachtell, I’ve strengthened my international profile and I’ve come home with a professional ballast and an invaluable network from one of the most reputable law firms in the US. I’ll no doubt benefit from this for the rest of my career.”

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