Corporate & Banking Law

San Juan, Puerto Rico, Corporate and Banking Law Attorneys

GAC's Corporate and Banking Law Department has assisted many manufacturing, tourism, retail and financial services companies seeking to establish operations in Puerto Rico. Continuing development has brought the firm to the midst of mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and the creation of special purpose entities, as well as matters related to corporate strategy, negotiation and interpretation of contracts, and general corporate law, including shareholder and partnership agreements, see our representative cases and transactions. The Department also provides day to day advice on matters of corporate governance, legal opinions, contracts, financing and project development.

Banking, Financing and Financial Institutions

For over 50 years, GAC has represented the banking industry in Puerto Rico, including depository and other financial institutions.

Attorneys from the Banking, Financing and Financial Institutions Practice Group have vast experience with commercial finance, construction finance, secured transactions, local mortgage and real property registry law.

Throughout the years, the range of clients has included commercial and savings banks, trust companies, credit unions, leasing companies, investment capital funds and mortgage lenders. Members of the department have also acted as special counsel for banking matters to government regulators. See our Banking, Financing and Financial Institutions Practice Group.

Securities

The Corporate and Banking Law Department also handles matters relating to transactional work involving securities offerings, such as bond issues and stock and limited partnership participations. Many of the offerings involve financing through private activity bonds issued by the Puerto Rico Industrial, Tourist, Educational, Medical and Environmental Control Facilities Financing Authority (AFICA) and issues by governmental agencies for particular projects. See our Securities, Capital Markets and Public Finance Practice Group.

Mergers, Acquisitions and Reorganizations

Lawyers from the Corporate and Banking Law Department work directly with our clients in structuring corporate entities, including start ups, assist them in merging with or acquiring related and unrelated entities and in corporate reorganizations. The group also provides counseling in the areas of corporate governance, consolidations, spin-offs, contracts and obligations, and general corporate law. See Mergers & Acquisitions & Reorganizations Practice Group

Starting a New Business in Puerto Rico

Starting a new business or developing an existing one is of particular interest. Attorneys from our Corporate and Banking Law Department work closely with clients in their process to establish new business entities in Puerto Rico, from determining what type of structure it should use to filing for and obtaining the various permits and licenses necessary to conduct operations in Puerto Rico. The department works closely with members of other departments and groups to provide the full service the client needs. See our Start Your Business in Puerto Rico Practice Group.

Due Diligence

The department also has experience in conducting due diligence as part of the transactional work. This due diligence includes employment-related auditing, environmental licensing, general permitting, environmental condition and compliance, real estate matters and others. The Corporate and Banking Law Group also works closely with members of the Firm's Tax Law Department and Labor and Employment Law Department in these matters.

Real Estate and Land Use

The law of Puerto Rico on matters regarding real estate in general and mortgages in particular is grounded on the civil law tradition historically followed under Spanish law. Due to their highly technical nature, most transactions require that deeds, contracts and other recordable documents be drafted to conform with particular conventions, in order to gain access to public registries. Land use is another integral factor in today's real estate transactions. Members of this practice group also offer advice in Puerto Rico's complex land use, planning and governing laws and regulations. See our Real Estate and Land Use Practice Group. In addition, members of this practice group secure licenses, permits and authorization from the Department of Health, the P.R. Fire Department, the P.R. Regulations and Permit Administration, the P.R. Planning Board and other relevant governmental entities.

Environmental Law

All companies doing business in Puerto Rico, including those in the heavily regulated pharmaceutical manufacturing industry, must respond to the demands of a complex network of local and federal environmental laws. Attorneys of GAC's Environmental Practice Group have extensive experience with all related administrative laws and provide local, national and international clients with counsel on federal and Puerto Rico statutory and regulatory requirements. In addition, often complex permitting require­ments and review procedures are imposed on businesses seeking to initiate or continue operations in Puerto Rico, as well as on those wishing to expand or relocate within the island. Our lawyers assist clients in complying with permitting requirements and procedures in this regard. They also represent clients in permitting hearings and related administrative matters. See Environmental Practice Group.

Intellectual Property

The department also handles the filing in the Puerto Rico State Department's Trademark Office of trademarks, service marks and copyrights, including the filing and recording of mark applications, affidavits of use, assignments, deposits of federal registrations and other recordings to maintain and protect our client's recorded rights, using a sophisticated specially designed software. It also assists its clients in protecting intellectual property rights as issues arise relating to copyright infringement, unfair competition and trademark/trade dress infringement. We have alliances with other intellectual property groups in other parts of the world to assist common clients in this area. See our Intellectual Property Law Practice Group.

Government Affairs

Those who work with or for the Commonwealth or municipal governments face special challenges. Lawyers from the group assist companies in bidding, contract drafting and negotiation, lobbying for the achievement of proposed plans, creation of appropriate political and regulatory strategies, and preparation for finalization of the appropriate legal documentation. See our Government Affairs Practice Group.

Health Law

Health care providers have special concerns regarding employment and labor law, antitrust regulations and collective bargaining practices. Employment attorneys in our Health Law Practice Group represent clients in the health care industry, including hospitals, managed care organizations, physicians and other health care providers. The lawyers provide counsel regarding the number of appropriate units, requirements of prior notice, the right to strike and other labor law issues specific to health care organizations and provide advice and representation in employment contract negotiations, employee benefits and defense against claims of discrimination, sexual harassment and wrongful termination.

DACO Matters

GAC's Corporate and Banking Department also assists clients in matters relating to the various regulations issued by the Puerto Rico Department of Consumer Affairs (commonly referred to as DACO). DACO is the Puerto Rico governmental consumer advocacy agency which advises consumers on their rights and enforces them. DACO regulates, among others,

  • misleading practices in advertising
  • contests and sweepstakes
  • rain checks
  • in-store pricing labels other required store signage
  • automobile warranties
  • real estate brokerage
  • residential real estate development
  • new condominium registrations
  • condominium law violations
  • construction vices and other construction related services
  • gasoline retail prices

The Department makes sure that DACO required documentation is properly drafted in compliance with the law and DACO regulations. It also represents clients in DACO hearings, defending clients against alleged violations, either imposed by DACO as part of its regulatory enforcing procedures, or as a result of a consumer complaint.

Members of the Corporate and Banking Law Department:

Francisco J. Dox-Millán . Myrna I. Lozada-GuzmánMarlena V. Riccio-Paniagua . Thelma RiveraArnaldo Villamil

Members of the group may collaborate with members of other practices at our firm to provide comprehensive solutions for individual clients.

Members of the firm appear on behalf of clients before federal and Puerto Rico courts, government agencies, and in domestic and foreign transactions. GAC's offices are in the American International Plaza Building in the heart of Hato Rey, San Juan, Puerto Rico's financial district. If you would like to speak with a member of the firm or have any other question, please contact the firm to arrange a consultation with an attorney with the appropriate experience.