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Legal market overview
Having successfully moved on from a long-lasting political and economic crisis, Honduras experienced further economic stabilisation and modest GDP growth during 2012. Leading lawyers attribute this positive trend to a number of investment-friendly policies that have been enacted in recent years – reforms that now appear to be coming to fruition. The 2010 public private partnership (PPP) law, boosted investment in a number of infrastructure projects, chiefly in the maritime and renewable energy sectors: several leading law firms have been involved in the largest PPP project tender to date, the construction and operation of the Puerto Cortés cargo and container terminal. However, in an escalating crisis over a security policy, Congress dismissed several judges causing renewed instability in the Honduran judicial system and fuelling some uncertainty among foreign investors. In a similar vein, corporate lawyers are witnessing considerable caution on the part of foreign investors due to the uncertain outcome of the November 2013 presidential elections.
The legal market nevertheless appears to be responding positively to recent developments, with most law firms benefiting from increasing investment in the infrastructure and energy sectors. Regional firms such as Aguilar Castillo Love, Arias & Muñoz and Consortium – Centro América Abogados take the lead and are capable of providing legal services throughout Central America. Nonetheless, local firm López Rodezno & Asociados operates a highly respected corporate and banking practice, and Bufete Gutiérrez Falla & Asociados and Bufete Melara & Asociados are also held in high esteem. In terms of dispute resolution, the two regional giants Arias & Muñoz and Consortium – Centro América Abogados enjoy the highest reputation. In IP, local boutiques Bufete Mejía & Asociados, Bufete Casco and Bufete Durón continue to dominate the market, while large regional firms are steadily expanding their IP departments.