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Latin America

HFW providing legal advice in Latin America

HFW has worked in Latin America for many years, principally in shipping, ports and terminals, commodities and energy. However, with the opening of an office in São Paulo in October 2011, we have been able to significantly enhance the capability we offer across the region to include, in particular, aviation and insurance.

What we do in Latin America

With specialist lawyers who speak fluent Spanish and Portuguese, the São Paulo office acts as a regional hub from which we can offer clients a seamless service for both transactions and dispute resolution across our core sectors of focus.

Our experience in Latin America

Our experience in Latin America extends across the region and for a range of clients, including airline operators, insurers and reinsurers, shipowners and charterers, oil and gas companies, service contractors and financial institutions.

For further information about how we can help with managing claims and re/insurance law in Latin America, please visit our interactive map: or otherwise contact Geoffrey Conlin.

Some examples of our work in Latin America include:

  • Advising Caribbean Airlines and insurers in connection with claims and issues arising from the runway excursion of a B737 aircraft in Georgetown, Guyana in July 2011 giving rise to total loss and passenger claims.
  • Acted for a leading global freight forwarder in its capacity as a contracting air carrier in relation to a number of claims before the Brazilian courts for loss or damage to various cargo carried by air.
  • Advised a major airline in connection with total loss and various passenger claims arising from the crash of an Embraer 190 aircraft in Quito, Ecuador in September 2011.
  • Advised a global container terminal operator in relation to the acquisition of a 50% stake in a new Brazilian terminal development, including negotiating the share purchase agreement, shareholders' agreement and long-term terminal service agreements for major affiliated container shipping lines.
  • Advised Pacific Basin on its participation in a newly formed US$20m Mexican joint-venture, Nafta Gulf Bridge SAPI de C.V., which established a ferry service operating in the Gulf of Mexico between Mobil, Alabama, USA and Veracruz, Mexico. The joint venture ferry service, the first of its kind, brought together a unique mix of JV partners located around the world.
  • Advised on bids for petroleum exploration and production rights in Colombia, Suriname and elsewhere in Latin America, involving reviewing local petroleum legislation and advising on PSAs and JOAs.
  • Acting for various London reinsurers in a property and business interruption claim following a tunnel collapse at a copper mine in Chile.
  • Acting for the captive insurer in the settlement of a property damage/business interruption claim resulting from failures at a mine in Peru in 2007/08, and an international subrogation action worth approx US$500m against the manufacturer of the machine which failed.
  • Acting for the salvors of the BP production drilling quarters platform vessel which nearly capsized in the Gulf of Mexico. This is the most valuable property ever subject to the Lloyd's Open Form Contract (the standard form of salvage contract), being approximately US$1.2bn.

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