Full-Service Law Firm in Douala, Cameroon
Law Firm OverviewHenry, Samuelson & Co., H S & Co., is an international primarily commercial and corporate law firm located in Douala, Cameroon. Yet, the attorneys are engaged in general practice to serve the diverse needs of local and international clientele. Practice areas include business law, intellectual property, insurance, banking and finance, business criminal law, international trade, incorporation, aviation and aerospace, accounting and collection, bankruptcy and liquidation, as well as general practice areas of legal opinions and audits, agreements and contracts, human rights, and more.
The lawyers have years of legal experience along with relevant academic achievements. They engage in litigation proceedings before the courts of common law (courts with ordinary jurisdiction and courts with special jurisdiction) and the specialized courts of Cameroon.
The legal team is bilingual in English (the vehicle of the English Common Law) and French (the vehicle of the French Civil Law). Since these are also the national languages, they are able to communicate complex concepts to clients, the other party, and the courts, in simple language. With a personalized approach, the lawyers develop custom solutions designed to protect clients’ rights and interests.
Year this Office was Established: 2000
Languages: English and French
Areas of Law
Additional Areas of Law: Accounting And Collection; Aerospace; Liquidation; Business Criminal Law; International Trade; Trade Relations; Incorporation; Air Finance; Maritime Finance.
Areas of Law Description
Henry, Samuelson & Co. has earned international recognition as leaders in the following short list of practice areas:
- Accounting & Collection
Henry, Samuelson & Co. advises its corporate clients on a wide range of accounting issues including, but not limited to, the keeping of accounts and fiscal implication, the obligation to establish accounting documents, the obligation to respect accounting principles as provided by the OHADA Uniform Act, the transparency of accounts, accounting information according to the different forms of business organization, the status of accountants, internal and external auditing and more.
In both the civil law and common law jurisdictions of Cameroon, the firm institutes local as well as international adoption proceedings for our clients. With the democratic adoption laws here, the firm has so far obtained several adoption certificates for most European and American adopters. A grand majority of the adoptees has come from the over 150 orphanages spread all over Cameroon.
- Aviation and Aerospace
The firm advises both lessors and lessees of aircraft (and engines of aircraft) on a wide range of issues including registration (and deregistration) of aircraft with the Cameroon Civil Aviation Authority, registration (and deregistration) of Lease agreements, repossession and enforcement, payments, confiscation, liability, insurance, import-export permits, bankruptcy, formalities, practical and other considerations.
- Banking & Finance
We represent clients worldwide in all aspects of financing transactions. Transactions range from origination and negotiation to documentation and closing, and when necessary, to enforcement of remedies of procedures and agreements for workout and reorganization. Clients retain the firm to represent them in their various capacities in financing transactions as agents, senior lender or other syndicate member, seller or purchaser of participation, assignor or assignee of direct loan interests, letter of credit issuer, trustee and arranger or purchaser of capital market instruments.
- Bankruptcy & Liquidation
Since the entering into force of the 1998 OHADA Uniform Act on the Organization of the Collective Procedure of Auditing Liabilities, we talk less and less of the old law of bankruptcy and more and more of the modern law of “enterprises in difficulty”. The old approach had a rather repressive character with a lot of emphasis put on the creditors of the enterprise.
- Business Criminal Law
Being a mainly business law firm, H S & Co. has developed an efficient and effective business criminal law practice to fight economic offenses committed within the framework of corporate entities against collective interests. In effect, our team of business criminal law experts give advisory services on economic or market offenses (unfair competition, passing-off and consumption…), financial offenses (taxation, banking, stock exchange), corporate offenses (research for shares, incorporation, declaration of conformity, declaration of share capital, immatriculation in the commerce register, sharing of dividends, annual balance sheet, abuse of goods and credit, general assembly, modification of capital, controls, dissolution, liquidation).
- Commercial and Corporate
With the experience our attorneys have acquired with the passage of time on the job, HS & Co. provides advice on corporate acquisition, mergers and acquisitions, take over, leases, taxation, social security, labor and trade relations matters, rehabilitation, administrative and judicial liquidation, agency contracts, distributorships, etc. Besides, the firm recently did a consultancy whereby a foreign company with an intention to open branches in west and central Africa asked us to do a general comparative study between the present OHADA code and the former “droits des sociétés”.
- General Practice
In addition to the consultancies we do in our specialized areas of practice and the eventual litigation that may ensue, the firm offers legal counseling in vast and varied domains.
One of the things that H S & Co. does on a rather regular basis is the incorporation of public limited companies, private limited companies with two or more shareholders or sole shareholder, partnerships, common initiative groups, economic interest groups and, civil companies for professionals who are not business persons as such.
We represent both national and international clients in all aspects of insurance, reinsurance and co-assurance transactions. We incorporate insurance and reinsurance companies under the OHADA Uniform Act and the CIMA code, obtain their operating license and advise them on tax, labor and social insurance issues. The firm also assists insurance companies in the recovery of outstanding premiums unpaid.
- International Trade
The major hurdle on the way of international trade is credit and trust. This is why the mechanism of Commercial Bankers Credit was devised. In effect, H S & Co. is frequently engaged in documentary credit transactions mostly between Cameroonian importers and European and Asian exporters whereby some standby Letters of Credit are issued by local funding banks in favour of the European and Asian banks for and on behalf of the Cameroonian business entities.
- Intellectual Property
H S & Co. is privileged to have a partner who is an accredited OAPI Industrial Property Attorney. We represent clients worldwide in the African Intellectual Property Organization, commonly known and called by its French acronym, OAPI, grouping 16 west and central African countries to wit: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon (headquarters), Central African Republic, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Tchad and Togo, with a total population of over 100 million.
The investment code was revised in 1990 to encourage productive investment in Cameroon. Thus it offers alluring conditions to investors in the form of incentives and guarantees. It is a liberal law in which the legislator calls on all natural persons or corporate bodies of Cameroonian or foreign nationality, irrespective of their place of residence, to undertake economic activity in Cameroon.
- Labor & Trade Relations
In August 1992 the Cameroon Labor Code was revised to meet the exigencies of an ambitious economic plan. In this new code, the liberalization of the economy is further sanctified by the freedom of contract between the employer and the employee. Here the balance of favour is tilted to the greater advantage of the employer.
- Litigation & Arbitration
The matters we handle range from disputes connected to and touching business criminal offenses and civil and commercial matters in general (commercial transactions, civil claims, merchant banking, commercial banking, collection, intellectual property infringement, breach of all types of contract, maritime claims, adoption, labour disputes, ship arrest, unfair competition, insurance claims, aircraft confiscation, corporate disputes…).
The firm’s clients range from shippers to ship owners and transit agents who have found in our attorneys reliable legal support. In effect we work on marine insurance, shipping, admiralty, and international trade. Our specialized experts provide advice and representation in maritime transaction matters and do litigation in areas including, but not limited to: cargo loss and damage claims, ship arrest and eventual sale/auction or release, maritime engagement contracts, maritime insurance claims, charter and other forms of hire disputes, collision and other maritime casualties (general average and salvage), marine and oil pollution, registration and deregistration of vessels, the responsibility of ship owners per the Hamburg Rules of 1978, maritime mortgage.
- Mergers & Acquisitions
The tendency today is for business entities to come together by way of mergers or acquisition in order to reap the benefits that go with scale and size. Here our services are usually retained to do the requisite due diligence before the total or partial takeover or merger is affected.
- Natural Resources
H S & Co. is heavily involved in the natural resources and energy sector of Cameroon. In effect we have had to do consultancies on forestry exploitation, diamonds exploration, fishing concessions and oil & gas concessions for American, European and Asian firms. In the process we assist our clients in obtaining the necessary governmental authorizations, licenses and approvals. Thereafter we draft, execute and perfect their edge lease agreements, mineral lease agreements, mining lease agreements, oil and gas lease agreements.
- Real Estate
H S & Co. is proud to have a Cameroon-government-accredited realtor qua consultant. In effect we do property management, sales, brokerage, rentals, procurement and studies. We also study the legal environment of land and determine its legal status. In practical terms we make two main products available to our local and international clientele, “the bulk-system” and “rent and value”.
Some of the firm’s attorneys are specialized in company and international taxation law. In the former, local companies engage the firm to give general and specific tax advice. Some even leave us to manage their tax declaration issues and annual balance sheets. In the later we draw from the Franco-Cameroon and Canada-Cameroon tax treaties to advise international companies on the dicey issue of double taxation and the tax implication of employee share plans for multinational companies with branches in Cameroon.
- Telecommunications & Information Technology
The attorneys of the firm have been substantially present in the telecommunications sector in Cameroon since the days of INTELCAM and ACTEL. They have had to be consulted on the laws governing the operation of submarine, terrestrial and spatial radio waves, telecommunications systems, international transit centers required for the routing and transmission of data, facsimiles, sound and TV pictures.
Mr. Sammy Bate
Civil Litigation, Eminent Domain, International Trade, Privatization Law, Tax
Mr. Jean Jacques Ebele
Arbitration, Civil Rights, Competition Law, Energy, Oil and Gas
Mr. Henry Baaboh Feh, Esq.
Commercial Law, Corporate Law, General Practice
Mr. Herve Chomnou Kouam
Intellectual Property, Procurement, Property Management
Mr. Anthony Taku
Banking Law, Bankruptcy, Finance, Insurance, Litigation
Mr. Valery Nganguh Fomusoh
Labor, Project Finance, Trade
Mr. Banyong Fonyam Jonie, Jr., Esq.,
Aviation Law, Environmental Law, Information Technology, Investment Law, Natural Resources
- Cameroon Common Law Society
- Association of European Lawyers
- International Trademark Association
- International Association of Business Leaders
More Information on Henry, Samuelson & Co.Aviation & Aerospace
Banking & Finance
Bankruptcy and Liquidation
Business Criminal Law
Commercial & Corporate
Articles Published by Henry, Samuelson & Co.
The law governing ship arrest in Cameroon is the Merchant Marine Community code of 03/08/2001 (the code). The code was inspired chiefly by the International Convention of 1999 on the arrest of ships and the Brussels Convention of 1952 on the Unification of Certain Rules on the Arrest of Ships. This code is a regional legislation applicable to the CEMAC sub-region comprising Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea and Tchad, with executive secretariat in Bangui.Read Article
For any economy to grow or decline, investment policy is the chief determining factor. By 1990 Cameroon had been suffering under the yoke of economic crisis for nearly half a decade. It was becoming important to find a new paradise of economic prosperity. Law n° 90/071 to rectify ordinance n° 90/007 of 08/11/1990 on the Cameroon Investment Code was to provide the way forward.Read Article
The law regulating civil aviation in Cameroon is law n°98/023 of 24 December 1998 on the regime of civil aviation.Read Article
Telecoms activities in Cameroon is administered by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications. But since communications is the knot which ties both the national and international business community together, the government in 1982 set up INTELCAM, a structure with a business outlook. While this state corporation managed international telecommunications activities, ACTEL was created alongside to take care of the internal telecommunications network.Read Article
The force of the Cameroon legal system resides in the principles and concepts underlying the administration of justice, the institutions where justice is administered and the way the legal rule, regulations and judgements are enforced.Read Article
Cameroon is a bijural system with the English Common Law operating in the two Anglophone regions of North West and South West and the French Civil Law operating in the eight francophone regions of Adamaoua, Centre, East, Far North, Littoral, North, West and South. These systems of law expanded to Cameroon through colonisation by conquest.Read Article
The law governing ship arrest as an executory measure in Cameroon is the CEMAC Merchant Shipping Community code of 03/08/2001 (the code). The code was inspired chiefly by the International Convention of 1999 on the Arrest of Ships and the Brussels Convention of 1952 on the Unification of Certain Rules on the Arrest of Ships.Read Article