Doing Business

Doing Business in Mexico 2015

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47 Doing Business in Mexico 2015 Electronic Contracting: Private use and public trend; online consumer protection In general, electronic contracts and web contracts are valid in Mexico under the Commercial Code and the Federal Civil Code. Furthermore, legislation on advanced electronic signatures for commercial transactions are in place since 2003. While Civil and Commercial Courts are obliged to acknowledge the validity of electronic evidence, certain Courts (e.g. labour Courts) are not specifically forced to accept such evidence; it should be noted also that certain documents must be presented in hard copy and with handwritten signatures in order to be valid in court (i.e. promissory notes). On the other hand, electronic signatures and advanced electronic signatures are widely used at government level. There is a clear trend toward using electronic signatures both in government-to- government communications and government-citizen communications (such as public bids, foreign investment reporting obligations, tax reporting/payment obligations, among others). Public Administration expects these technologies to improve government transparency, efficiency and accountability. The Consumer Protection Law offers considerable protection to online consumers (including advertising and data processing rules, through minority or vulnerable protection rights, among others). Special industries Special regulations govern the operation of certain industries, some of which have already been covered. Others are discussed below. However, this section discusses these restrictions only in broad terms. Accordingly, those interested in more specific information about a certain industry or activity should consult with our advisers. Insurance and banking The foreign investment law authorizes foreign ownership of insurance companies. The National Insurance and Bonding Commission regulate insurance activity in Mexico. Where the insured asset is situated in Mexico, the law provides that all insurance must be written with insurance companies authorized to do business in Mexico. Any person involved in the placing of insurance with companies not so authorized (entries in the Mexican company's books, among other things, being deemed to be involvement) is liable to criminal prosecution. Similar provisions exist with respect to fidelity and other types of bonds. It should be noted; however, that substantial deregulation of both the banking and the insurance industries has been accomplished during recent administrations. 6

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