A law graduate from the Universidad de Monterrey in Nuevo Leon, Mexico, María Elia Gastélum is licensed to practice in Mexico and California and before the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. Maria Elia is not licensed to practice law in Texas.
As such, María has represented multiple trans-national clients from both the U.S. and Mexico with cross-border interests. María is fluent in English and Spanish, and she has a thorough understanding of cultural differences in business practices.
María’s primary purpose is to assist foreign citizens and U.S. residents in protecting their assets and ascertaining their instructions for the effective dispositions of their assets during life and at their deaths. Her planning strategies provide clients with options that allow them to maintain control of their assets and protect their ownership interests while reducing or eliminating their estate and gift tax liability and other tax obligations. She is committed to ensuring that clients' family members are able to maintain their lifestyles in the future, and she implements tools to maintain confidentiality on their affairs. She believes everyone benefits from estate planning, regardless of the size of their estate
Among her other areas of expertise are corporate governance, environmental compliance, immigration issues, import-export matters, employment matters, distribution and franchise agreements, licensing for different activities including the use of natural resources for research purposes, and negotiating agreements with ejidos and Mexican cooperatives for various business ventures. She has conducted due diligence review of real estate, corporate, intellectual property, third-party agreements and other compliance matters for transactions in Mexico and the United States, including mergers, acquisitions, and corporate reorganizations. She has also assisted U.S. and foreign clients involved in government procurement contracts in Mexico to ensure compliance with relevant Mexican laws and regulations.
María has also acted as an expert witness in Mexican law before California legal proceedings regarding real estate and civil status law issues. She has extensive experience with international treaties that govern letters rogatory, legalization, uniformity of powers of attorney, and others. María has supervised, to a successful conclusion, multiple litigation proceedings in Mexico on behalf of both Mexican and non-Mexican clients.
She has also lectured on topics including the distinction between notaries in the U.S. and Mexico, international financing, and intellectual property law.