LOVILL > Panama City, Panama > Firm Profile

LOVILL
MIDTOWN SF74
CALLE 74 DE SAN FRANCISCO
PANAMA CITY
Panama

Panama > Dispute resolution Tier 2

Lovill‘s dispute resolution practice specialises in complex international cases, and stands out for its track record of representing sovereign states and state-owned enterprises in contentious matters. In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, the team has been particularly active in cross-border asset recovery and insolvency cases. Key sectors of expertise include infrastructure and construction, banking, energy, logistics, telecoms and real estate. Practice head Isabel Cristina López has longstanding experience in complex, multi-jurisdictional litigation and arbitration (acting as both arbitrator and counsel in proceedings). She is particularly well placed to assist clients from the construction, logistics and banking sectors. Associate Christopher Glasscock is also highlighted for international cases.

Practice head(s):

Isabel Cristina López

Testimonials

‘This firm provides high-quality advice in all areas, and is well known and highly respected in the courts and by the legal community.’

‘They are tireless workers, totally committed to their work and the clients. Very professional but readily accessible at any time to solve a problem.’

‘They have an ability to handle complex cases and large volumes of documents better than many other firms I have worked with, even with a relatively small team.’

‘Cristina Lopez is a creative thinker and energetic advocate. She is hands-on in the cases and provides a great service to her client but also does an excellent job of keeping an eye on the big picture. Christopher Glasscock provides excellent client service as well and has good attention to detail.’

‘The team at Lovill has been excellent to deal with during our legal case. They are fluent in English which has had an incredible impact on our communication and collaboration.’

‘Lovill’s litigation team showed a keen interest in understanding our business in order to present us with the most efficient litigation solutions. In addition to the team’s technical knowledge, the personalised client service and attention to detail was fundamental to our decision to seek their advice.’

‘A coordinated and organised team. Christopher Glasscock is an excellent lawyer who has a personal touch and is very professional, follows up on the case, meets deadlines, and is well trained and honest.’

‘The Lovill team is always willing to collaborate with us on our matters, and always acts with great professionalism and uses the technology we have available to meet our requests. The firm’s lawyers stand out mainly because of their ability to analyse and plan strategies. They are always focused on objectivity and being transparent with us as clients.’

Key clients

CAABSA

Latin American Ventures

Republic of Ecuador

Latinclear

Bonage

Grupo Especializado de Seguridad e Investigaciones (GRESINSA)

Riba Smith

Inmobiliaria Citelis

Atrio Mall

Amanco

Work highlights

  • Representing Latin American Ventures in a claim against Hacienda de Cerro Azul and Promised Land Development relating to the failure to repay a loan of $5m granted by the client to the defendants for the construction of a real estate project in Cerro Azul.
  • Defending Southern Dreams in a lawsuit brought against it by Extreme Corp for the alleged usurpation of land in the province of Panamá Oeste.
  • Acting for a former shareholder and manager of the Crepes and Waffles restaurant brand in Panama City in a dispute over the non-payment of his shares, which were sold to the majority shareholders in late 2020.

Panama > Labour Tier 2

Lovill has a wide-ranging labour and immigration practice which covers compliance with local regulations, the drafting and negotiation of labour contracts and employee terminations, applications for residence and work permits, and the development of internal policies. The team also handles the employment aspects of corporate restructurings, and represents employers in labour litigation and negotiations with workers’ unions. The group, which is under the leadership of senior associate Jeannette Bravo, counts companies from the tourism, entertainment, financial services, logistics, pharmaceuticals and transport sectors among its clients. Practice head Bravo is counsel of choice for several of the firm’s multinational clients in labour and immigration matters. Isabel Cristina López is a key contact for labour litigation.

Practice head(s):

Jeannette Bravo

Testimonials

‘They strive to communicate as clearly and as responsively as possible, including returning our emails and phone calls promptly. We have a direct line to the department’s lead attorney, Jeannette Bravo, who handles our cases from start to finish. This is unlike many of the big law firms, where you may not even speak to your main attorney at all. By being involved with clients in this way, they provide a high level of personal attention.’

‘The most important differentiation in terms of service is that I know I will receive personal attention throughout the process. You will be meeting with the lead attorneys handling your case, not a junior attorney, assistant, or deputy.’

‘Lovill is a relatively young and advanced law firm that is not afraid of innovation and the use of technology. It is a firm that gives each of its attorneys opportunities, allowing them to think outside the box and thus be able to stand out above other law firms. The team members are very understanding, attentive and diligent, but the most important thing is that they listen to their clients, understand them and make them feel comfortable despite the circumstances that are making them uncomfortable.’

‘I have had the opportunity to work in several labour negotiations with Jeannette Bravo and, despite her youth, she is an assertive lawyer, with strong intuition and is capable of making crucial decisions for her clients. It is important to highlight the confidence she has in herself and the way she transmits it to her clients; her vast knowledge of the subject means she can provide clients with quick responses, which is necessary in these difficult post-pandemic times.’

‘Lovill is very fast and efficient. There are no stupid questions with them and they are super responsive. They help us with everything we need and their contacts also allow us to achieve the necessary results to achieve our goals.’

‘Jeannette Bravo is willing to explore solutions and seek alternatives with other members of her team in brainstorming meetings, taking from there the strategies and new steps to follow.’

‘The knowledge, experience and availability of the team is very good. I dealt directly with Jeannette Bravo on everything related to labour issues.’

‘The advice provided to us by Jeannette Bravo in the last two years has been spectacular. All issues were resolved thanks to the advice provided. The knowledge she has in labour matters has helped a lot with the development of the company.’

Key clients

Unilever

SGS Panamá

Banco Lafise Panamá

Ceva Logistics

Grupo Terra

Dekel

Gresinsa

Atrio Mall

Sofistic

Telecable

Visa

Isthmian Investment Corporation

Hacienda San José

MiFinanciera

SBA Communications Panama

Central Latinoamericana de Valores (Latinclear)

Financiera Turbocash

El Carmen Investments

Mexichem Panama/Wavin

Work highlights

  • Advised Gresinsa on all labour matters related to the winding down of the company, including negotiations with the employees’ union.
  • Represented Central Latinoamericana de Valores (Latinclear) in litigation before the Supreme Court, defending the client against a claim brought by the former general manager.
  • Advising Ceva on the labour aspects of its day-to-day operations, including employment contracts, terminations, the negotiation of collective bargaining agreements, labour disputes and other matters.

Panama > Real estate Tier 2

Lovill‘s real estate team stands out for its advice on the sale, acquisition and merger of land plots, including for the purposes of residential and commercial developments. In addition, the firm has notable expertise in advising major real estate companies and high-net-worth families on the restructuring and management of their real estate portfolios. The practice is led by Elizabeth Heurtematte, who divides her time between Panama City and Tokyo, and Isabel Cristina López. Heurtematte is proficient in project finance, and regularly advises on regulatory issues related to the development of projects in the historical Casco Antiguo district of Panama City. Associate Alejandro Fung focuses on real estate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Heurtematte; Isabel Cristina Lopez

Testimonials

‘Alejandro Fung provided us with fast and effective legal advice on real estate transactions and always tried to find acceptable solutions for both parties.’

‘Lovill is a superb law firm that is attentive to clients’ needs and very efficient in its approach to a range of legal services.’

‘I have worked with Alejandro Fung and found him to be very practical when it comes to real estate business decisions and well versed in real estate law and current commercial practice in Panama. His insight has saved me literally thousands of dollars in potential legal and other fees.’

‘Excellent service, fast response times and quality advice.’

‘Alejandro Fung has excellent customer service skills. He is efficient and seeks to provide a prompt solution, protecting the interests of the client.’

‘They have great attention to detail and go to a lot of effort to protect their clients and keep them informed.’

‘Alejandro Fung is a great lawyer and has exceeded our expectations on multiple transactions.’

Key clients

Pearl Island

Mexichem Panamá/Orbia Group

Isthmian Investment Corporation

Hacienda San José

M&A Capital

Dekel Holdings

Riba Smith

Atrio Mall

Valor Advisors

Blue Playa Venao

Work highlights

  • Advising the developer and owner of the Pearl Island resort on the division of land into new plots for future development, the constitution of a new building into the horizontal property regime, and obtaining authorisation from the Ministry of Housing.
  • Advising Financiera Autocash on the negotiation of new long-term lease agreements as part of its expansion and opening of new branches.
  • Advising Blue Playa Venao on the sale of properties in its ocean village development in the province of Los Santos.

Panama > Tax Tier 2

Lovill‘s tax practice focuses on assisting major multinational clients with the tax structuring of significant corporate transactions, as well as advising on the operation of Panama’s special tax regimes to promote foreign direct investment. Tax compliance is another core area of activity for the practice, which is under the leadership of Elizabeth Heurtematte. Heurtematte is based between Panama City and Tokyo, and is proficient in tax structuring and estate planning. Ana Carolina Ureña stands out at the associate level; she has notable expertise in assisting companies with their establishment in the Panama Pacifico special economic zone.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Heurtematte

Key clients

Ceva Logistics

Dekel Group

Visa

Grupo Terra

Pacifica Petroleum

Isthmian Investment

Unilever de Centroamérica

SGS Panama Control Services

M&A Capital

Riba Smith

Work highlights

  • Advising Pacifica Petroleum on compliance with the new economic substance requirements applicable to companies established in the special economic area of Panama Pacifico, as well as the renewal of its registration under the legal stability regime.

Panama > Corporate and M&A Tier 3

Lovill advises a broad client base of multinational companies, family offices and foreign investors on corporate matters in Panama, including M&A, and restructuring. Its wide-ranging service offering also covers winding down operations, compliance issues, and commercial contracts including distribution and licensing agreements. The team particularly stands out for its expertise in transactions involving real estate assets. Japan and Panama-based Elizabeth Heurtematte and Isabel Cristina López jointly lead the team, which is singled out for its considerable expertise in deals involving real estate assets. At associate level, Alejandro Fung is noted for his advice to multinationals and family offices, particularly on real estate transactions, and Ana Carolina Ureña for her specialisms in tax and compliance matters.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Heurtematte; Isabel Cristina López

Testimonials

‘Their strengths and skills include their knowledge of the topic, attention to detail and sound recommendations. They follow up on pending issues.’

‘There is a broad commitment to customer service, with good availability of lawyers and clear opinions. When some investigation is required, they do it quickly and, above all, provide correct, clear and simple advice. They have adequate technological means and clarity in billing.’

‘We have worked in the corporate area mainly with Elizabeth Heurtematte and Ana Carolina Ureña, who show knowledge of the standards in the areas in which we work and an excellent availability to assist us in a timely and professional manner, as well as a personal touch which makes us trust their services. Our day-to-day contact has recently been Ana Carolina Ureña, who shows agility in carrying out the required tasks, knowledge and very good personal attention to clients.’

‘It is the most responsive team in Panama. We work with more than five firms in this area and Lovill is characterised by its good service and its speed in handling matters, always taking care of the details. The team has a broad mastery of corporate law, offering support on matters ranging from the incorporation of companies to the maintenance of companies and review of corporate documents for transactions. They truly provide a multidisciplinary service.’

‘Alejandro Fung is characterised by his availability, speedy responses and assertive legal advice. The availability of the Lovill team allows you to work more efficiently, with the ability to quickly amend or change instructions at the necessary pace when you are involved in a transaction. The team’s extensive knowledge of the law allows us to achieve better results.’

Key clients

Unilever

SGS Panama Control Services

Dekel Holdings

Grupo Especializado de Seguridad e Investigaciones (GRESINSA)

Visa

Mexichem Panama (Grupo Orbia)

SBA Communications Corporation

Riba Smith

Ceva Freight Management

M&A Capital

Isthmian Investment Corporation

Work highlights

  • Advising Mexichem Panamá (part of the Orbia Group) on all corporate and commercial matters in Panama.

Panama > Banking and finance Tier 4

Lovill has notable experience advising Panamanian corporations from a range of sectors, including real estate, retail and hospitality, on cross-border loan agreements with international financial institutions, as well as assisting banks and financial services providers with transactional and regulatory matters. The team stands out for its expertise in the fintech sector, and proven track record in M&A in the financial services space. Practice head Elizabeth Heurtematte, who divides her time between Panama City and Tokyo, is skilled in syndicated and cross-border financings. She is supported by associate Ana Carolina Ureña, who focuses on advising investment firms and multinational companies, and possesses additional expertise in tax law.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Heurtematte

Testimonials

‘LOVILL provided us with an agile service and presented us with efficient solutions to perfect our investments in a satisfactory manner.’

‘Ana Carolina Ureña was available to assist us, even during holidays.’

Key clients

Visa

Inversiones CrediQ Business

Banco Lafise Panamá

BAC Credomatic

Inversiones Amilena

Grupo Terra/Uno

Banco Agrícola

SGS Central America

Financiera Autocash

Riba Smith

Work highlights

  • Advised Grupo Q and its Panamanian subsidiary, as guarantor, on a loan of over $100m granted by Citibank and the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) to alleviate the impact of Covid-19 on businesses in the region.
  • Advised Grupo Q on a $101m dual-tranche syndicated credit agreement with Banco Latinoamericano De Comercio Exterior (Bladex).
  • Advising fintech company Yellowpepper, which was recently acquired by Visa, on regulatory issues relating to its financial products.

About LOVILL

Founded in 2009, LOVILL is a law firm recognized by clients and international publications as a leader in Dispute Resolution, Corporate/M&A, Labor Law, Real Estate and Banking and Finance. We are focused on providing legal services with the standards required by Fortune 500 companies. We are known for excellence in service, dedication to our clients, and strict quality control across all our practice areas.

A committed team by your side

Our teams are trained to work beyond our borders serving clients from all around the globe both for their legal needs in Panama as well as managing legal services across Latin America. LOVILL combines true multidisciplinary teams in said areas, making the firm a preferred choice for advising on local and international transactions.

We are known for excellence in service, dedication to our clients, and strict quality control across all our practice areas.

We provide practical and innovative problem solving strategies, working in alignment with the highest standard of ethics.

Our attorneys build close relationships with clients based on trust. Our services are aimed at safeguarding the best interests of our clients and working to achieve their objectives with comprehensive and result oriented strategies. We offer legal advice that fits the jurisdiction, the needs of the client and that the client can implement in a practical manner.

Our Culture

LOVILL’s relationship with its clients is based on shared core values. Trust and ethical business practices are essential for the firm and compliance is built into all its practice areas. At LOVILL our team constantly exceeds client’s expectations due to our high performance and quality assurance protocols.

A vibrant work culture that flows with diversity and inclusion

Promoting and offering professional development to women and minorities is at the core of our firm culture. For several years LOVILL has been awarded for “Most Pioneering Firm in Gender Diversity in Latin America” by CHAMBERS & PARTNER LATIN AMERICA.

LOVILL has an outstanding track record when it comes to diversity in leadership positions in our team. We believe that merits and performance are essential when choosing and promoting our legal and support team.

Dispute Resolution:

LOVILL’s dispute resolution practice has an international reputation and has consistently achieved top rankings for providing creative and innovative strategies for complex cross-border disputes and arbitration proceedings.

For LOVILL each case is a unique problem that requires a tailor- made solution and strategy that takes into account law, process, and commercial impact. We have broad experience in civil law disputes before Panamanian courts, national and international arbitration, negotiations, and complex multijurisdictional disputes that involve asset recovery, transnational insolvency litigation and complex corporate structures, as well as providing strategic advice to avoid legal disputes.

LOVILL has represented high profile companies in cross border disputes in industries such as infrastructure, finance, energy, logistics, banking, telecommunications, real estate, consumer goods and entertainment and hospitality. In addition, thanks to our team’s in-depth knowledge of public and private international law, LOVILL has a specialized expertise in the representation of sovereign states and state-owned enterprises.

LOVILL’s dispute resolution team is carefully selected from law students that have competed in prestigious international moot court competitions. Within that selection process LOVILL takes into consideration and has a preference for the Phillip C. Jessup Moot Court Competition, or similar moot courts of international relevance because of the level of performance and skills they provide for outstanding advocacy.

Corporate and Business Law/M&A:

We represent our clients in complex international transactions, as well as legal matters required in the regular course of business. Our corporate team provides legal advice to clients in the following sectors: consumer goods, infrastructure, logistics, transportation, hotels, security, financial entities, telecommunications, e commerce, among others. We offer a multidisciplinary team that can advise businesses on corporate structures, contracts, compliance, administrative regulations, tax and merger and acquisition transactions.

LOVILL has developed an expert practice for providing legal services in the region to multinational companies, family offices, foreign investors, and private clients that consider Panama, due to its strategic location, special investment incentives, political stability and dynamic economy,  as the best place to establish their operations in the region. We advise each client according to the investment regime and corporate structure that best suits its business goals.

Real Estate:
LOVILL offers legal advice on all matters related to real estate law in Panama. Our clients in this sector are local and international developers and investors, who, hand in hand with LOVILL, have developed large real estate projects ranging from residential and commercial developments, hotels, shopping centers, projects in the historic center of Panama and private infrastructure in general.

Tax Law:

LOVILL provides tax planning and tax advice to companies operating in Panama, including in special economic regimes such as: Panama Pacifico, Multinational Company Headquarters, City of Knowledge and free zones.

We advise companies on tax compliance and procedures, as well as requests for exemption and tax incentives, filings before the General Directorate of Income and actions before the Tax Administrative Court.

Global Wealth and Private Clients:

We work with high net worth individuals, family offices, closely held businesses and accounting and law firms abroad to provide legal services across multiple legal areas.

Our services range from wealth planning, formation and management of corporate structures, corporate and business law, real estate investments in Panama, compliance, tax advice, family disputes to business succession planning to immigration and relocation services.

Lovill advises private clients and families with a net worth anywhere from seven to eleven figures on estate planning, ownership structures and private foundations. Lovill works together with banking partners to offer trusts and investment services in order to provide the full range of solutions required for a successful estate planning of high net worth individuals with multiple types of assets across the globe to organize and facilitate the transfer of wealth to future generations.

Labor Law:

We have a team of lawyers specialized in providing legal advice in labor law to local and local and international clients, including leading multinational companies. Our lawyers represent our clients in all stages of employment relationship. We also offer our clients assistance in labor litigation and restructuring processes, among others.

Our services in this area include: Application of the labor measures presented by the government due to Covid-19 and the reopening of the business sectors and guidelines that they must comply with, including application and implementation of measures such as teleworking, reduction of working hours, suspensions, creation, monitoring and assistance to the Committee of Hygiene, trainings and legal advice for staff and management.

Immigration Law:

LOVILL has a team of lawyers specialized in providing legal advice in immigration law to local, international clients and leading multinational companies.

Our immigration team works together with the client’s human resources professionals to provide tailored and practical guidance for the establishment or relocation of employees to the Republic of Panama.

In our immigration practice, we offer clients advice and presentation before the immigration authority of all available types of visas and immigration, work and residency permits. Within our immigration portfolio we provide services to companies in the consumer goods industry, certification industry, special regime immigration policies, among others.

Intellectual Property:
We advise and represent clients in the registration of trademarks of products and services, trade names, utility models, industrial designs, patents and all aspects of the Industrial Property Law of Panama. Similarly, we advise our clients on copyright and protection of their works: books, software, productions under copyright Law.

Finance, Banking & Securities:

LOVILL has a team of lawyers specialized in advising on banking, financial and securities law. The LOVILL team is trained to provide its clients with comprehensive legal advice on financial operations and regulatory aspects in the Republic of Panama.

Our clients are banks with general license in Panama, with regional and international presence, financial companies, investment advisers, investment funds, family offices, among others.

We have successfully represented clients in local and cross-border financial transactions, such as project finance, preparing and reviewing legal documentation to establish credit facilities and collateral, due diligence of financial institutions, purchase and sale of banking and financial entities, amongst others.

Languages: English / Spanish

 

DepartmentNameEmailTelephone
Partner - Corporate and Business Law/M&A Elizabeth Heurtematteelizabeth.heurtematte@lovill.com(507) 2153215
Partner - Dispute Resolution Isabel Cristina Lópezcristina.lopez@lovill.com(507) 2153215
Senior Associate - Labor, Immigration and Administrative Law Jeannette Bravojeannette.bravo@lovill.com(507) 2153215
Associate - Real Estate Alejandro Fungalejandro.fung@lovill.com(507) 2153215
Associate - Tax Ana Carolina Ureñaana.urena@lovill.com(507) 2153215
Spanish
English (fluent)