Estate Planning, Wills and Probate

We provide advice on how to create smart structures for all assets acquired in Costa Rica, with special focusing on real estate, so that any of our customers can be sure that their goods will end up in the desired hands in case they fail to exist. Having a will in your country of origin does not imply that the holdings purchased in Costa Rica are protected, since many of these instruments would be invalid here because there are special regulations regarding Wills. And for instruments that could take effect there is an extremely complicated, time consuming and expensive procedure to enforce them. In view of the foregoing it is best to prepare and sign a will in Costa Rica exclusively for property acquired in this country.

For those married couples it is also possible to execute a Joint Will containing different type of provisions in case of separate or simultaneous deceases. Any will can be revoked or modified at any time as long as the principal is alive to do so. It is very important to clarify that in case of death without a will in the country the internal law indicates those entitled to receive the assets, existing as frontline wife, children and parents of the deceased. In case of death and if there is a will then the procedure can be brought in the Courts or be executed by a notary, depending on the circumstances.

There are other alternatives such as the creation of a corporation containing special provisions such as contingent power of attorney, or create stock certificates issued on behalf of the beneficiaries and others.

Corporate Law

Many of our corporate clients rely on the expertise of our legal team for general counsel services. Over the years, we have put together a reliable legal team to assist in every major type of financial transaction in Costa Rica, including general corporate representation and acquisitions, corporate finance and tax litigation. We structure these transactions to satisfy our clients and to attract prospective investors. In registering different corporation types, we help structuring the best possible Articles of Incorporation according to specific needs. Our staff also provides additional services for corporations, including: issuing certificates of stock, maintaining corporate minute books and preparing corporate minutes; set the order of business for General Assemblies regular or special meetings, handling incorporations of new entities; qualifying existing corporations to conduct business in Costa Rica and preparing corporate resolutions. We can also provide bookkeeping services under generally accepted accounting principles.  

Real Estate and Litigation

We have significant experience in all areas of real estate acquisitions, sales, exchanges and leases. We represent our clients in foreclosures, and the negotiation and enforcement of contracts of all types. We also have experience in annexation, land development and eminent domain. We design property protection plans according to our clients' needs. On Litigation, we have fought and won a number of property fraud cases in both Criminal and Civil courts. We also specialize on all kind of Litigation involving Property and Corporations as well as offer alternatives such as mediation and arbitration to our clients when any dispute arises.

Our team can provide thorough studies of property records, including checking cadastre plans, municipality restrictions based on regulatory plans and complete title researches in order to prepare detailed title opinions. We provide alternatives that allow our clients to avoid probate processes in court. We also have the necessary expertise to handle special documents such as mortgage certificates, trust contracts, condominium by-laws, purchase agreements, reciprocal promises to buy and sell and transfer deeds.

Credit, Collections and Foreclosures

We represent many businesses (major equipment lessors and financiers, and wholesalers) in connection with their lending relations and asset protection in Costa Rica. We serve as local counselors for non-resident national and international businesses and corporations, with respect to their local credit problems. We specialize in documents like promissory notes, mortgages, pledges and offer expedited reintegration of assets through foreclosures and asset confiscation.

Notary Services and Registrations

All types of notarization services are available: Notarization, constitution, registration and amendment of business corporations or associations, drafting of agreements, last will and testaments, codicil to wills, transactions with rights, transference and alienation of real estate or movable properties, constitution of mortgages, pledges or other guarantees, affidavits, lease agreements, general power of attorney, acknowledgements, loan agreements and notary documentation in general.