James L. Baker is a partner in Holland & Knight's Dallas office. Mr. Baker practices in the area of corporate finance with a focus on representing asset managers, lenders and financial institutions. He advises clients that are involved in various industries, including energy, banking, insurance, hedge funds and general financial services. Mr. Baker counsels lenders, issuers and servicers/collateral managers in connection with complex structured finance transactions involving collateralized obligations, including collateralized loan obligations (CLO) and collateralized bond obligations (CBO), asset-backed securities (ABS) and securitizations, as well as a broad range of structured and traditional lending products. Representative asset classes in this space have included middle-market loans, broadly syndicated commercial loans, auto loans, commercial mortgage loans, peer-to-peer loans, consumer loans, credit card receivables, oil and gas royalties and other esoteric or specific types of collateral.

Mr. Baker has significant experience representing traditional lenders in connection with investments structured to be compliant with the principles of sharia under Islamic law, including ijara, murabaha and sukuk-based facilities. He counsels numerous lenders and investors in connection with their senior and subordinated/mezzanine debt investments, debt workouts and restructurings, preferred stock, control and minority equity purchases, warrant and other “equity kicker” investments, syndicated bank facilities, asset-based loans, multilender/purchaser transactions, and loans involving complex and multijurisdictional collateral.

Representative Experience

  • Commercial Lending: represented originator/borrower in connection with warehouse lending facilities and the restructuring of certain facilities due to adverse market conditions, totaling more than $5 billion
  • Structured Finance and Securitization: represented originator/issuer in connection with numerous public and private ABS and asset-backed warehouse facilities issuances, including transactions backed by auto loans, commercial mortgages, broadly syndicated loans, peer-to-peer loans, credit card receivables and other esoteric or specified collateral, and middle market loans, along with the ongoing management and servicing related to those facilities
  • Structured Finance and Securitization: represented numerous collateral managers in connection with initial documentation of collateralized debt obligation (CDO) warehouse arrangement and subsequent bond issuance and closing; due to adverse market conditions certain structures did not close, requiring innovative solutions to orderly conclude the warehouse arrangements
  • International and Cross-Border Transactions: represented large financial institution and insurance company in connection with documentation of multinational, multi-tranched sharia compliant ijara and murabaha facility for U.S. and U.K.-based light manufacturing company
  • International and Cross-Border Transactions: workout and restructuring of separate murabaha and sukuk-based sharia compliant transactions


  • University of Houston, J.D., magna cum laude
  • The University of Texas at Austin, B.B.A., Finance
  • University of Houston, MBA
Bar Admissions/Licenses
  • Texas
  • Structured Finance Industry Group (SFIG) 
  • Loan Syndications and Trading Association (LSTA) 
  • American Bar Association, Business Law Section 
  • Association for Corporate Growth (ACG)
Honors & Awards
  • The Best Lawyers in America guide, Banking and Finance Law, 2024


Speaking Engagements