T. 787.756.5333 ext. 222
F. 787.756.5339


  • University of Puerto Rico School of Law, J.D., 1982
  • Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, B.A., 1980
Bar Admissions
  • Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, 1983
  • United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico, 2001
  • United States District Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, 2003
  • Puerto Rico Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • National Association of Bond Lawyers
Juan Ramón Cancio-Ortiz

Juan Ramón Cancio-Ortiz is one of the founding partners of the firm and serves as the Chair of its Corporate Department, and Managing Partner. He focuses his practice in corporate and commercial law, corporate and municipal finance, commercial lending, mergers and acquisitions, real estate, securities law, litigation, banking law, health law, administrative law and local tax exemption.

He became initiated in securities work in 1984 in a U.S. Treasury indexed preferred stock offering for Banco de Ponce, then one of the leading banks in Puerto Rico. Since then, Mr. Cancio has participated in numerous offerings of municipal and corporate securities, including swaps, hedges, and derivative products. During this time, in addition to being involved in the purely transactional and regulatory aspects of the transactions in which he participated, he has also been involved in the determination of the taxation of such financial products. His experience in the taxation of financial products and transactions extends from Puerto Rico taxation to Section 501(c)(3) and Section 103 exempt financings under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the “Code”). He is also particularly familiar with the impact of the sourcing requirements of the Code to transactions in Puerto Rico. He is currently part of the list of approved Bond Counsel for the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, particularly for the Puerto Rico Industrial, Tourist, Education, Medical, and Environmental Pollution Control Facilities Financing Authority, and has acted as Bond Counsel and Underwriter’s Counsel in other agency offerings. In 2006, Mr. Cancio was designated by the Governmental Development Bank of Puerto Rico as part of the selective group of professionals entrusted with facilitating the successful return of the Puerto Rico Aqueduct and Sewer Authority to the revenue bond market, after a 20 year hiatus.

Through his involvement in the financing and securities offerings, for Section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt hospitals and similar facilities in Puerto Rico, Mr. Cancio has also developed significant experience in the regulatory aspects of healthcare law. His expertise in this particular field was recognized by the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, during its initial efforts in the privatization of various public healthcare facilities in the 1990s.

Additionally, Mr. Cancio has also been involved in commercial litigation in the local court system and before the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in numerous high stake cases involving multi-million dollar claims, including “bet the company” litigation. Specifically, Mr. Cancio has appeared before the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and was successful in upholding the constitutionality of Act No. 109 approved by the Puerto Rico Legislature, on July 12, 1985, as amended, under the Dormant Foreign Commerce Clause, a case of first impression in the United States. Recently, Mr. Cancio also led the Firm’s efforts to successfully enjoin in local court the payment of a multi-million dollar stand-by letter of credit.


Published opinions: 

American Express v. Municipio de San Juan, 120 D.P.R. 339 (1988); Citibank and Grupo Catalan de Inversiones, S.A. v. Grupo Cupey, Inc. and American International Insurance Company of Puerto Rico, 383 F. 3d 29 (1st Cir. 2004); Antilles Cement Corporation v. Anibal Acevedo Vilá, Governor of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico et al, Puerto Rican Cement Co., Inc., Intervenor, 408 F.3d 41 (1st Cir. 2005); Antilles Cement Corporation v. Luis G. Fortuño Burset, Governor of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, et al, Cemex De Puerto Rico, Inc., f/k/a Puerto Rican Cement Co., Inc., Intervenor, 670 F.3d 310 (1st Cir. 2012).