Managing Partner: Juan Ramón Cancio Ortiz
Senior Partners: Jorge Covas Mendoza, Carlos Santiago Sarkis
Number of partners: 4
Number of other lawyers: 12
Corporate & Finance: Juan Ramón Cancio-Ortiz, Jorge Covas Mendoza, Carlos Santiago Sarkis
Litigation: José Raul Cancio-Bigas, Ileana Oliver Falero
Cancio Covas & Santiago, LLP (CCS) was organized in 2002 as a financial services boutique, by the Chairman and two of the principal partners of the Corporate Finance and Banking Department of a major Hato Rey law firm, specialising in banking, municipal finance, mergers and acquisitions, real estate and business law generally. Founding partners, Juan Ramón Cancio, Jorge Covas and Carlos Santiago constitute one of the leading local corporate and financial practice groups, representing companies and other business entities in all stages of their development and growth, as well as the financial institutions that finance them. CCS also has a strong litigation practice, regularly appearing in local courts and the US District Court for the District of Puerto Rico and the United States Bankruptcy Court, as well as the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.
Main Areas of Practice:
Corporate & Finance Department: 70%
Litigation & Bankruptcy Department: 30%
Corporate & Business Counseling:
CCS regularly counsels clients on business organisation and entity formation, assisting clients in devising ideal capital structures tailored to their individual needs, as well as attending to corporate governance matters and shareholders’ interrelations. CCS provides counseling for general business matters, as well specialised services in areas such as health law, non-profit and charitable organisations, as well as business and tax incentives for relocated investors and corporations (Act 20-2012, Act 22-2012).
Corporate Finance & Securities:
Since its inception CCS has been recognised for providing innovative counsel in corporate finance to clients involved in a broad range of complex financial, institutional and commercial transactions, including the offering of debt and equity securities in Puerto Rico. CCS offers advice in the structuring and negotiation of debt financing for acquisitions, buy-outs and related transactions, including the development of structures tailored to Puerto Rico’s unique tax and legal environment.
CCS represents governmental issuers and underwriters in offerings of municipal securities and regulatory compliance matters under federal and Puerto Rico laws. For over 30 years members of the firm have acted as issuer, bond and underwriters counsel in myriad transactions, as well as letter of credit bank counsel, among other roles. CCS represented Puerto Rico Aqueduct and Sewer Authority in the issuance of its Senior Revenue Bonds in 2008 and 2012, the refunding of its Commonwealth Guaranteed Revenue Bonds in 2008, and in the execution of Forbearance Agreements with its subordinate debt holders in 2016 and 2017. In 2018 CCS acted as local counsel to the GDB Debt Recovery Authority in the issuance of approximately $2.6 billion of its GDB Debt Recovery Authority Bonds (Taxable) pursuant to a Qualifying Modification under Title VI of the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA).
In addition to providing services to nationally and internationally recognised financial institutions with structured transactions in Puerto Rico, CCS serves as bank counsel in a wide variety of financing transactions for the corporate, asset based lending, workouts, structured finance and construction divisions of several of Puerto Rico’s most prominent commercial banks, as well as corporate and individual borrowers in diverse commercial transactions.
Mergers & Aquisitions:
CCS’ attorneys structure sophisticated transactions such as mergers, stock and asset purchases and sales, recapitalisations, divestitures, leveraged buyouts and other corporate combinations and restructurings. CCS has been bench-marked as specialised counsel in the acquisition and sale of hospitals and their financing, developing a health-law practice as a result thereof.
CCS regularly counsels clients in all aspects of the real estate industry, including the acquisition, development, financing and construction of all types of projects, zoning matters and urban planning, to a varied clientele.
Reorganisations, Restructurings & Workouts:
The firm regularly represents secured and unsecured creditors, including financial institutions, in reorganisations, restructuring and workout transactions to renegotiate financing agreements.
CCS’ Litigation Department counsels and represents a wide range of corporate, governmental and individual clients, in local and federal courts, administrative forums and through alternative dispute resolution mechanisms. The firm’s in-depth knowledge of finance, business and corporate dealings, together with a vast and varied litigation experience, allows CCS to provide clients with a unique array of services, including developing solutions to complex controversies in a cost-effective manner using strategic dispute resolution methods. In this regard, CCS counsels and represents clients in all types of commercial litigation, corporate, debt collections and foreclosures, debtor/creditor disputes, lender liability, breach of contract, contract interpretation, construction claims, breach of fiduciary duties, post-closing disputes, shareholders/ partnership disputes, regulatory investigations and litigation, bankruptcy adversary proceedings, insurance and coverage claims, among others. CCS has also been actively involved in proceedings under Titles III and VI of PROMESA, and related adversary litigation.
Collections & Bankruptcy:
CCS provides counseling and advice to financially distressed clients and clients dealing with financially troubled third parties, regularly representing secured and unsecured commercial and individual creditors, including financial institutions, corporations and partnerships, through all phases of insolvency proceedings.
CCS assists clients in various aspects of the energy business, including the development, financing and permitting of power generation projects and other infrastructure projects and has been involved in the financing and acquisition of different energy projects in Puerto Rico and abroad.
In the private sector CCS traditionally represents banks and other financial institutions doing business in Puerto Rico, as well as hospitals, telecommunication providers, commercial and retail property management companies, including shopping centers real estate developers, insurance companies, non-profit organizations and high net worth individuals. CCS’ public sector clients include governmental agencies, public corporations and statutory public trusts in connection with bond issues and other complex financings, asset dispositions, government privatizations, workouts, among others.