Leonel Melo > OMG > Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic > Lawyer Profile

Dominican Republic

Work Department

Corporate and Finance




He served as Telecom Commissioner during the 2004-2012 period. He seats in many board of directors and committees in industries as diverse as banking, securities, insurance, food, construction, and tourism. In 2005 he founded the OMG Institute, dedicated to promoting the formulation of strategy and sound public policy for the Dominican Republic through research and teaching. He is currently President of the OMG Institute.


Spanish, English and has extensive knowledge of French.


Dominican Bar Association; Director of the British Chamber of Commerce of the Dominican Republic.


Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra, Bachelor of Laws, magna cum laude (1989); University of Notre Dame, Master of Arts (1993); Harvard Law School, Program of Instruction for Lawyers (1997); IESE Business School, Advanced Management Program (2011).


A part time academic, he teaches courses in Business Planning, Tax, and Contracts.

Lawyer Rankings

Dominican Republic > Banking and finance

(Leading individuals)

Leonel Melo – OMG

OMG‘s Manuel Troncoso leads or co-leads on all of the firm’s banking work, often working in tandem with corporate partner Esperanza Cabral and aided by senior manager Aldana Fernández and consultant Diego García. The team takes on a range of work, including structuring and registering a $880m public issuance for Fiduciaria Reservas and negotiating a project financing package for an energy client. A highlight for the firm is its work on crypto assets; since 2019 it has analysed Dominican regulations on licensing and registration for Latham & Watkins LLP. The firm also advises banks on both commercial lending and loans to the Dominican state, recently acting for Banco de Reservas de la República Dominicana in its collection of public debt. Firm president Leonel Melo provides further oversight. Associate Lyna Desangles left in 2021 to join consultancy OV.

Dominican Republic > Energy and natural resources

(Leading Individuals)

Leonel Melo – OMG

OMG‘s energy work is boosted by the presence of specialists in the team, with energy practice head Michelle Abreu promoted to partner in December 2021 and energy consultant Emily Sucart hired from Guzmán Ariza in January 2022. Since their promotion and hire, Abreu and Sucart have worked on a power purchase agreement (PPA) for Streamline Integrated Energy regarding one of the first waste-to-energy plants in the Caribbean. Esperanza Cabral brings corporate expertise to the practice, regularly co-leading on matters such as acquisitions of renewable energy assets, including due diligence, financing for a solar energy project, and reducing the tax implications of the sale of shares in a wind farm. With oversight from firm president Leonel Melo, the firm often takes on regulatory matters, entering into negotiations with regulators such as the Dominican Tax Authority and working on regulatory elements of transactions. Clients are usually energy companies, but the firm also advises investors on energy projects.

Dominican Republic > Tax

OMG‘s tax department head Ana Taveras, who was made partner in December 2021, co-leads on all the firm’s tax work with either corporate partner Esperanza Cabral or firm president Leonel Melo, assisted by tax specialist associate Montserrat Viñals. The practice advises on either standalone matters or as part of cross-department work, such as the tax aspects of restructurings and transactions. The team is experienced in negotiating with the tax authority; recently it contended the authority’s opinions over the tax impact of transactions, such as a sale and purchase of shares and a real estate transaction involving CGT, and successfully acquired a waiver of withholding tax for a renewable energy client.

Dominican Republic > Corporate and M&A

(Leading individuals)

Leonel MeloOMG

OMG advises a wide range of domestic and international clients on M&A, the structuring of foreign direct investments and the establishment of free trade zones, as well as commercial and regulatory matters including distribution and sales agreements and import and export issues. The firm also draws on a number of international affiliations, as part of the Legus network and the Eversheds Sutherland Latin America Alliance, to provide multi-jurisdictional services. The practice is led by firm president Leonel Melo, legal strategy co-ordinator Esperanza Cabral, who stands out for her expertise in M&A and restructurings, Johanna Soto, who advises on M&A, restructurings, foreign investments and estate planning, commercial department head Laura Piantini and senior director Gloria Gassó, who focuses on cross-border corporate transactions, including M&A and joint ventures. The practice was bolstered in August 2021 with the addition of senior consultant Melissa Valdez from Squire Patton Boggs.

Dominican Republic > Dispute resolution

OMG‘s dispute resolution team counts major domestic and multinational companies from a range of sectors, including healthcare, financial services, aviation, telecoms and tourism, among its clients. Notable recent areas of activity include commercial, administrative, insurance and real estate-related litigation. Director Tristán Carbuccia leads the practice and has experience in foreclosure and collection proceedings, domestic and international arbitration, and criminal, administrative and constitutional law. Corporate partners Leonel Melo and Esperanza Cabral are also key contacts for related disputes.