Banks and financial institutions in Puerto Rico face a variety of legal challenges and risks. They must take a proactive approach to negotiations as well as legal and regulatory compliance in order to avoid scrutiny from government authorities and mitigate their risk of litigation. When their clients get sued or file for bankruptcy, they can find themselves facing losses due to factors beyond their control as well; and, in this scenario, a proactive response can be critical for avoiding unnecessary financial harm.

At Delgado & Fernández, LLC, we have extensive experience representing banks and financial institutions in all legal matters. We represent financial industry clients in Puerto Rico and on the U.S. mainland, helping them avoid risks when possible and resolve issues when necessary. Our attorneys have represented financial institutions before the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) and Puerto Rico Commissioner of Financial Institutions (CFI) among other authorities, and we also have significant experience as transactional counsel for financial institutions and as creditors’ counsel in bankruptcy proceedings.

Our Legal Services for Banks & Financial Institutions with Business in Puerto Rico

We provide full-service legal representation for banks and other financial institutions with business in Puerto Rico. Representative matters that we routinely handle on behalf of our banking clients include:

Counseling on Daily Banking Operations

Banks and other financial institutions can encounter a variety of legal issues on a day-to-day basis. When these issues arise, an informed and strategic approach is critical. With our attorneys’ deep experience in the banking and financial services sector, we are well-versed in the issues that tend to arise, and we are able to provide efficient and proactive advice focused on ensuring that our clients do not encounter unnecessary risks.

We communicate with many of our banking and financial institution clients on a daily basis, effectively serving as outside general counsel. We also work alongside many of our clients’ in-house legal departments to provide assistance with matters that exceed their internal bandwidth and capabilities.

Structuring and Documenting Credit Transactions

A significant portion of our work with financial institutions involves advising them during credit transactions. Our attorneys assist with structuring and documenting all types of credit transactions, including (but not limited to):

  • Acquisition financing agreements
  • Secured credit agreements
  • Unsecured credit agreements
  • Letters of credit
  • Loan participations
  • Trust instruments
  • Loan restructurings and work-outs

An informed and strategic approach is critical when pursuing these types of transactions as well. Financial institutions must carefully balance their commercial and legal interests—ensuring that they preserve all necessary legal protections while entering into relationships with their customers on amicable terms. At Delgado & Fernández, LLC, we are sensitive to these competing interests, and we take a business-minded approach to negotiations focused on adequately addressing both our clients’ commercial goals and their legal needs.  

Acquisitions and Divestitures

Our attorneys also represent banks and other financial institutions in acquisitions and divestitures. For example, we have significant experience assisting clients with:

  • Acquiring the assets of failed financial institutions
  • Acquiring and divesting leasing and financing operations
  • Acquiring and divesting loan portfolios, leases and other assets

Here, too, we take an all-encompassing approach to negotiations focused on closing the deal with all necessary legal protections in place. Our attorneys advise our clients’ executives and key stakeholders regarding all financial and legal risks so that they can make strategic decisions with their institutions’ long-term business goals in mind.

Compliance and Regulatory Matters

We also have substantial experience assisting financial institutions in Puerto Rico and on the U.S. mainland with compliance and regulatory matters. As noted above, our experience includes working with the FDIC, OCC, OTS, and Puerto Rico CFI, among many other federal and local banking regulators. Our legal services in this area include:

Developing Compliance Programs

Our attorneys assist banks and other financial institutions with developing comprehensive compliance programs. We also work with institutions to overhaul existing compliance programs that are no longer serving their intended purpose.

Working with Regulators to Secure Approvals

Our attorneys communicate with federal and local banking regulators on behalf of our clients to secure necessary approvals. We have extensive experience working with the authorities listed above and are well-versed in their approval processes and procedures.

Resolving Issues with Regulators as Necessary

We also work with regulators to resolve issues on behalf of our clients as necessary. When issues arise, a proactive approach is generally best, and will typically allow for an efficient resolution that avoids unnecessary negative publicity.

Internal Training, Compliance Management and Investigations

Along with developing compliance programs, we also assist our banking clients with internal training and compliance management. Effectively managing compliance is an ongoing process that requires constant attention. By taking much of the compliance burden off of our clients’ shoulders, we are able to help them manage compliance more efficiently while also maximizing the resources that they can devote to their business operations.

We assist our clients with conducting internal investigations as well. When compliance issues arise, a prompt and effective response is critical. Conducting a timely and comprehensive internal investigation is the first step toward making informed decisions focused on risk mitigation.

Bankruptcy Litigation and Work-Outs

The attorneys in our Banking & Financial Institutions Practice Group work alongside the attorneys in our Bankruptcy Practice Group to assist financial institutions with bankruptcy-related matters. This includes providing advice and assistance with all aspects of client bankruptcies and complex work-outs, including those involving complex collateral arrangements such as time-share units in condominiums and health services-related security arrangements.

Speak with a Lawyer in Our Banking & Financial Institutions Practice Group

If you would like to know more about our firm’s services or our attorneys’ experience, we invite you to get in touch. With offices in Guaynabo just outside of San Juan, we represent companies and institutions throughout Puerto Rico and on the U.S. mainland. To schedule an appointment with a lawyer in our Banking & Financial Institutions Practice Group, please call 787-274-1414 or send us a message online today.