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James R. Austin


Jim Austin joined Adams and Reese in 2007 and focuses his practice in the areas of banking and finance, real estate transactions and governance. This includes contracts, large corporate and middle market lending transactions, commercial real estate transactions, asset-based lending transactions, syndicated credits and loan participations, leveraged leases, USDA and SBA guaranteed loans, rate management transactions and marine financing.

With more than 30 years of legal experience both within financial institutions and as outside counsel, Jim also works in the areas of debtor/creditor relations, federal and state banking regulations and governmental relations.

His significant contributions include:

  • Serving as lead lawyer in the Banc One Corporation Law Department for Bank One’s Private Banking line of business. He supported that line of business across the bank’s 12-state footprint.
  • Serving as Senior Vice President, Legal Counsel and Assistant Secretary for Premier Bank, National Association - a Louisiana bank with over $4 billion in assets and operations across the entire state. He was part of a very small legal team that supported all of the bank’s commercial and retail lines of business.
  • He was also solely responsible for supporting the managed assets department with a portfolio of loans and real estate in excess of $400 million.
  • Serving as legal counsel for Premier Bank, National Association and its successor for nearly a decade.

Jim is involved in the recruiting of new attorneys for Adams and Reese and is active in client development. Professionally, he is former Chairman of the Louisiana Bankers Association Bank Counsel Committee and serves on the Louisiana State Law Institute UCC Committee and Security Devices Committee. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Baton Rouge Area Chamber of Commerce, is a past member of the Baton Rouge Rotary Club and a past President and Board Member of the Baton Rouge Symphony.

In his free time, Jim enjoys time with his family, travel, golf and automobiles.