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Work +52 55 2623 0552

Derek Woodhouse

Work +52 (55)2623 0552
CMS Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow

Work Department

Energy, Oil & Gas, Electricity, Renewables, Projects, Infrastructure, Project Finance, PPP.




  • 2009 – present: Partner, Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow, S.C., Mexico City
  • 2006 – 2009: Counsel, Chadbourne & Parke, S.C., Mexico City
  • 2001 – 2005: Senior Associate, CMS Cameron McKenna LLP, London, UK
  • 1999 – 2000: General Counsel, Energy Regulatory Commission, Power Sector Reform Unit, Mexico City
  • 1996 – 1999: Deputy General Counsel, Energy Regulatory Commission, Department of Legal Affairs, Mexico City
  • 1994 – 1996: Advisor to the Commissioner, Energy Regulatory Commission, Mexico City
  • 1993 – 1994: Advisor to the General Counsel, Energy Ministry, Department of Legal Affairs, Mexico City


Spanish, English.


  • Escuela Libre de Derecho, Mexico City, Law Degree, 1988 – 1996
  • George Washington University, International Law Institute, Washington D.C., United States, Postgraduate Studies, Introduction to the United States Legal System, 1997
  • Harvard University, Center for International Development, Boston, Massachussets, United States, Postgraduate Studies, International Program on Privatization, Regulations and Corporate Governance, 1999.

Latin America: International firms

Projects and energy

Within: Projects and energy

CMS is only the second international law firm to build a presence in Brazil and all the Pacific Alliance nations. A high proportion of its Latin America focus is on energy, natural resources, oil and gas, and infrastructure. The firm is ‘capable of handling very complex work related to energy and infrastructure, mainly in agreements governed by English law’, according to one client. It has a ‘respected background in energy projects around the world and applies this expertise to solve legal problems’ and is ‘highly responsive, accurate and knows how to address the client’s concerns in an adequate timeframe’. Recent mandates saw the practice advise Eneva on the termination and replacement of existing coal purchase contracts for two thermal power plants in the North East of Brazil; and, via its Chilean office, advise Enagás Chile on the restructuring of the capital stock of GNL Quintero, reducing its shareholding in the company from 60% to 45%, by selling a share to Borealis Infrastructure Group. ‘A mature and experienced lawyer’, Rio de Janeiro-based Ted Rhodes ‘is always accessible to his clients’, ‘makes on-time and assertive responses’ and ‘demonstrates knowledge and humbleness’. Chile partner Jorge Allende is noted for mining, energy and resources and Derek Woodhouse is a prominent figure in Mexico City.

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Energy and natural resources

Within: Leading lawyers

Derek Woodhouse - CMS Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow

Within: Energy and natural resources

The team at CMS Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow has long had a strong energy offering, particularly in the power and renewables sectors, with clients benefiting from an added international dimension now that the firm is formally CMS’ Mexico office. The practice’s regulatory expertise is particularly strong, as illustrated by its work advising the National Energy Control Centre (CENACE) on the implementation of the Operational Guide of the Clearing House for long-term auctions, as well as the drafting of the rules for the third round of auctions. The firm is also recommended for its transactional expertise, and recently advised CKD IM and CDPQ on the acquisition of a 1,700MW portfolio from ENEL Green Power, including four wind projects and four solar projects. Founding partner Derek Woodhouse and the newly promoted Luis Fernández Lagunas are both very active in this sphere.

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Projects and infrastructure

Within: Leading lawyers

Derek Woodhouse - CMS Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow

Within: Projects and infrastructure

CMS Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow is in growth mode and was among the market leaders for projects and infrastructure advice even prior to becoming officially part of the CMS network. The group acts for a mix of private and public-sector clients, and recently advised Proactive Media Ambiente Mexico and Termoenergia CDMX Holding on a major waste-to-energy PPP that will generate electricity for the Mexico City Transport Hub System. It also advised Group Danhos, Inmobiliaria Copri and ZEDEC on a project to redevelop 900,000 sq m of government land into a public park and housing. Enrique Lorente Ludlow is one of the main partners on the infrastructure side, while Derek Woodhouse (‘a star’) is recommended for energy-related projects. Recently promoted partner César Lechuga is also very active.

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Real estate

Within: Real estate

Clients appreciate CMS Woodhouse Lorente Ludlow’s six-strong real estate team, regarding it as ‘very good in terms of quality, value and quick response time’. The practice has consolidated over several years and provides clients across numerous sectors with reliable, integrated assistance in all real estate issues and related areas; moreover, the firm’s association with CMS (begun in 2013) was formalised in conjuncture with the latter’s expansion into south America, offering additional regional capability. The team is led by name partner Enrique Lorente Ludlow and by recently made up partner César Lechuga, and also calls on the expertise of name partner Derek Woodhouse, who heads the infrastructure practice. Lechuga is valued for his ‘advice, preparation and dedication’; and the team was further strengthened with the hire of associate María José Estrada, who joined from Inmobiliaria Quiero Casa where she was in-house counsel. The practice continued its steady flow of work for its strong client roster, assisting: Opera Desarrolladora with its MXN$1.4bn Castorena Residential Project and the MXN$1.1bn Parque Lira Residentia Project, both located in the capital, as well as with other developments; and, drawing on its strength in finance, energy and project finance, advising CKD IM and CDPQ on the real estate due diligence related to the $3bn acquisition of a 1,700MW portfolio – including 4 wind projects and 4 solar projects – from ENEL Green Power. In addition, the team assisted the Mexico City government on the legal issues involved in the development of a number of multi-purpose real estate projects; and advised Cinépolis, another of the team’s regular clients, on the renegotiation of a real estate trust for the development of a residential project in Querétaro, valued at $410m. The group also assists Deka Immobilien Investment and Union Real Estate Investment with day-to-day matters, including leasing and administration, acquisitions and general corporate matters.

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Legal Developments in Mexico

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Notorious Marks

    Notorious marks or the declaration thereof, has always been an issue widely discussed in Mexico by the IP legal community. This is so because provisions of the Paris Convention dealing with this topic have for a long time been uses as an effort to cancel or nullify trademarks registered by Mexican authorities without really making an extensive evaluation of proposed denominations and without examining in depth if such marks may be potentially affecting rights acquired by third parties elsewhere. So, a specific regulation and legal frame that at least tries to resolve this issue is always a good start in the right direction.

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    Advertising in Mexico is governed by multiple bodies of law including for at least seven Federal Laws, five Regulations also of Federal application, a number of the so-called Mexican Official Standards (NOM's) and certain other laws and regulations applicable into specific States within the Republic of Mexico. All of them are focusing to establish the form and manners for producing and communicating advertising of products and services in Mexico.

    It has been well publicized in the Mexican media over the last few months that the General Customs Administration (AGA) and the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI) are planning to launch a customs trademark registry, as a short-term solution to increase protection for trademark owners against the import of infringing and counterfeit products.

    The evolution in the protection and enforcement of IP rights has also reached the Mexican practice. The traditional ways of defending a registered trademark on a non use contentious procedure have developed.

    By Jose Luis Ramos-Zurita