Rebecca Leon

Rebecca Leon

Baker & McKenzie LLP


Rebecca Leon is a partner in Baker McKenzie's Financial Regulation and Enforcement Practice Group. She counsels broker-dealer and other financial services clients on a wide range of state and federal securities law issues, as well as on compliance with the rules of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). She assists clients with a panoply of intercompany, customer and industry agreements and works closely to guide financial services firms on structuring and developing their global operations.

Practice Focus

Rebecca counsels broker-dealers, investment advisers, fund managers, banks and other financial services clients from both a US and global perspective. She advises her clients on marketing and offering financial products and services outside the US; foreign registration, licensing and exemptions; establishing foreign operations; and concurrent compliance with US and foreign law. She works in more than 100 jurisdictions worldwide.

A true international lawyer, she maintains an active network of contacts of attorneys outside the United States in order to efficiently and effectively guide clients through the legal challenges of international initiatives. Prior to joining the firm, Rebecca worked at law firms in New York and Miami, where she also assisted clients with hedge fund formation, public offerings, private placements, securities arbitrations, and investigations by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and FINRA. Notably, she also has prior experience as a staff attorney in the Enforcement Division of the SEC’s New York Regional Office. During law school, she maintained internships at both the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

Representative Legal Matters

  • Develop global cross-border policies, procedures, and customer documentation for dually registered broker-dealers/investment advisers
  • Advise broker-dealers on opening foreign offices and subsidiaries  and  in obtaining required  foreign authorizations and exemptive relief
  • Counsel fund managers on regulatory considerations with respect to global distribution
  • Advise banks on provision of cross-border institutional and consumer banking  services to non-U.S. clients
  • Guide clients in analyzing and reporting ownership interest in foreign public companies
  • Develop guidelines for  broker-dealers providing  margin and other lending, debit cards, checks, transfer on death accounts, and cash sweep programs to non-U.S. residents
  • Counsel financial services firms with operations in the U.S. and Latin America on the potential regulatory impact of their strategic business initiatives
  • Advise  domestic and foreign broker-dealers on the application of the US securities laws to cross-border business, including Exchange Act Rule 15a-6
  • Prepare customer agreements, including those focused on non-U.S. resident customers
  • Counsel clients on piggyback clearing arrangements and prepare related agreements, including agreements with non-FINRA member foreign firms

Professional Honors

  • Recognized as one of the Top 100 Female Lawyers in Latin America, Latinvex, 2020

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) Compliance and Legal Society
  • National Society of Compliance Professionals (NSCP) 


  • Florida~United States (2005)
  • New York~United States (1996)
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York~United States (1996)
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York~United States (1996)


  • Brooklyn Law School (JD) (1995)
  • Case Western Reserve University (MBA) (1992)
  • Case Western Reserve University (BA) (1990)


  • English


  • Speaker, "Marketing & Providing Services to Clients Outside the US," 2020 National Society of Compliance Professionals National Conference, 19-21 October 2020
  • Speaker, "COVID-19 - Latin America Wealth Management Discussion: A Webinar for Financial Services Firms," Baker McKenzie webinar, 14 April 2020
  • Speaker, "Global Marketing and Distribution Compliance Practices," 2019 National Society of Compliance Professionals National Conference, 21-23 October 2019
  • Speaker, "International Cross-Border Regulatory Issues," SIFMA Regional Firms GC/CCO Roundtable, 17 September 2019
  • Speaker, "What’s Next for LatAm?," Pershing’s Latin America Symposium, 25 September 2018