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From a young age, I wanted to practice law after hearing my father talk about how much he appreciated the ways in which his attorneys helped him achieve his goals as a small business owner. Practicing law in the U.S. and in the international financial services arena has allowed me to work with highly intelligent and energetic individuals across the globe, helping them and their institutions to achieve their goals. 

Joel Laser has more than 40 years of broad in-house and law firm experience representing financial institution and corporate clients in connection with the structuring, negotiation, documentation, administration, workout and restructuring of domestic and cross-border financial transactions.

Within the financial services arena, Joel has experience in secured and unsecured loan transactions, syndication and participation agreements, intercreditor and subordination agreements, private placements, letters of credit, leveraged loans, acquisition finance, mezzanine loans with equity kickers, project finance, securitizations and other structured finance transactions, credit default swaps and other derivative transactions, tax-exempt bonds, and workout and restructuring agreements both in and out of bankruptcy proceedings.

Before joining Adams and Reese, Joel was Senior Counsel for more than 10 years at Wells Fargo Bank in Houston, serving as senior company counsel in the Commercial Workout Section of the Law Department. For close to 10 years before that, Joel was Associate General Counsel at Financial Security Assurance in London, working for the European Structured Finance Group of one of the leading AAA-rated financial guaranty insurance companies. In that role, he was responsible for a full spectrum of pan-European transactions and related corporate, regulatory, accounting, tax, compliance, and oversight issues.

Working in-house for two different top-tier financial institutions in particular has allowed Joel to build on his understanding of the issues that matter most to clients, an understanding that is key to evaluating and negotiating proposed agreements and litigation strategies.

A Corpus Christi native, Joel began his career as a member of the Finance/Corporate Group of one of the then oldest and largest law firms in Houston – Butler & Binion – where he represented domestic and foreign clients on a broad range of financial transactions, as well as corporate and regulatory matters. As a Partner at McGuire Woods, Joel then helped launch the global law firm’s New York office.

Joel received his J.D. in 1981 from Harvard Law School. He earned his B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Rice University in 1978.

After graduating from law school, Joel served as a Law Clerk to The Hon. Carolyn Dineen Randall of the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.


  • Harvard Law School, J.D., 1981
  • Rice University, B.A., 1978, magna cum laude

Bar Admissions

  • Texas
  • New York

Court Admissions

  • Texas
  • New York

Community Involvement

  • Holocaust Museum Houston – Volunteer
  • Jewish Federation of Greater Houston – Committee member and volunteer
  • Congregation Emanu El Houston – Board of Trustees, Committee member and volunteer
  • Rice University – Committee member