All producers and sellers or purchasers must act secure in foreign trade
All sellers should watch closely the legal part in foreign trade
In extraordinary situations legal advice is all the more necessary to be better protected in sales and purchases
It is true that we are living times of change and adaptation in all aspects, it is a good moment for export companies to revise in detail and depth their processes, strategies and very important, the legal situation in their relations with international clients.
Marcos Hernandez Rivas, Coordinator of International Legal Assistance at Cofoce explains: “The goal of the contract is that the parts whom are in different countries have an economic profit as a result of international trade of products or services; but when we talk about the Covid 19, in the midst of this health crisis, these situations may go as far as to put an end to the best business intentions and sometimes one of the parts may find themselves in a situation of not fulfiling the contract because of the events that are not in their control. Since the contracts reflect rights and obligations of the parts and a contract establishes the means to observe those rights and obligations”, said Hernandez Rivas-
Companies around the world, are trying to have their contracts come to a successful completion, having a good profit within the international trade of products and services, recognized the oficial at Cofoce.
Hard times require more attention to how trade is made
Frequently, said Hernandez, the best intentions in business may come to an unexpected end and sometimes one of the parties may find themselves in the need of not fulfiling their obligations because of events that are out of their control, just like the one we are living right now.
Hernandez Rivas said that all the contracts should be fulfiled, still, in this crisis, it is necessary to revise that the documents declare that they are subject to be revised or modified by unexpected and/or extraordinary circumstances that are not caused by any of the parties and circumstances that occur after the contract was signed.
The scenario for Covid 19
Companies around the world are facing scenarios where the total or partial non-fulfiling of the contractual commitments can occur, they can be, payment, supply, price, merchandise return or delay in the delivery for causes that are not caused by them.
In international trade, there are third parties involved in operations, and it is for this reason that we must revise a contract.
Revision of clauses in contracts
A very important part and one that companies must consider is knowing how the contract was prepared (in writing or verbal) to avoid posible damages.
If it is verbal, we are facing a complicated situation because perhaps we can not argue many of our rights against our counterpart. In the case we have a contract in writing we must revise who presented the contract; sometimes big buyers have contracts of the adhesion type where it is very difficult to negotiate or adapt their contracts and they set on us obligations that are sometimes disproportionate.
In any case we should watch that the obligations we accet are not disproportionate, that we have a possibility, that we recognize our capacity to fulfil the obligations of the contract, we should recognize our capacity to fulfil the contract, this is the matter that is the job of lawyers and the second part refers to legal matters of the contracts, then it is there where we should determine what it is that we signed, what we agreed on to sign the contract”, said Hernandez Rivas.
Make sure you have a good contract
What is ideal, said the Coordinator of International Legal Assistance of Cofoce, is to have the assistance of a lawyer that is a specialist in International Trade, one who can go shoulder to shoulder with customers and who knows at all times the situation where contracts will be made.
Just as well, they should include in the contract a clause where they include the Unpredictability Theory that refers to the extention or modification of the obligations in a fortuitous case or force majeure.
“There is a clasue that refers to the applicable laws, this is a great topic that does not have a single answer, we as lawyers must analyze it very carefully. ‘What are the laws that will apply to the contract? Those of the country of our counterpart or our countrie’s? or those of an international agreement that provides, and rules the criteria between both laws’, plus that there are terms for the modification or updating of the contract”, said Hernandez.
Secure your operations, have legal advice
“Cofoce can help you with the writing and revision of the international sale-purchase contract, of merchandising, as well as for distribution, agents, licenses and international maquila, for more specific contracts and moreover, for contracts where the law to be observed is not the Mexican law. We have a number of lawyers around the world who are specialists in contracts thanks to their performance as authorized lawyers in a specific territory, we rely on these lawyers to provide the exact assistance”, said Hernandez.
If the company is from Guanajuato and they invest in lawyer’s assistance from these specialists, the Government of the State of Guanajuato has starting 2020 the program Commerce and Exports 4.0, which incudes a reimbursement of investment of up to $50,000 pesos per company, for this type of assistance.
Production and trade face new challenges worlwide
A challenge and a commitment
The director of Cofoce, Luis Ernesto Rojas Avila, sent a mesage to producers in Guanajuato, he said: “Facing the situation that we are experiencing, with all the uncertainty, despair, and worries, entrepreneurs should have in Cofoce, today more than ever, an ally for your assistance, market relations and support”.
“Our commitment as an Organism is today stronger with entrepreneurs. The challenge is for all, Private Investors and Government, and all the staff of specialists at Cofoce are conscious of this new challenge”, said Rojas Avila.
“More than worrying, at Cofoce we work to identify the opportunities that are emerging today. We are here to work with you”, said the Director.