Photo of Maria C.  Cartagena-Cancel

Maria C. Cartagena-Cancel

Income Member, Litigation Practice Group
787.250.5665 |


Mrs. Cartagena maintains a broad litigation and counseling practice representing corporate entities in a wide variety of business disputes. She has significant experience in complex litigation, including contractual disputes, foreclosures and collections, derivative actions, landlord-tenant issues, and general tort litigation in both state and federal courts, as well as administrative litigation. She has assisted clients with various extraordinary remedies and provisional remedies to secure post-judgment.

She has significant experience in administrative forums before multiple agencies and on bids and procurement consulting and litigation before agencies representing companies bidding on government contracts for goods and services.

Her experience in the bids and procurement area includes representing clients before the Puerto Rico Power Authority; the Department of Education; the Ports Authority; the Police Department; the Department of Work and Human Resources and; the Puerto Rico Estate Elections Commission, among other agencies.

Mrs. Cartagena is the author of the Puerto Rico Procurement Rules and Regulations Summary for the Second Edition of the Guide to State Procurement: a 50-State Primer on Purchasing Laws, Processes and Procedures to be published by the Public and Contract Law Section of the American Bar Association in 2016.

Before joining McConnell Valdés, Mrs. Cartagena worked as a senior Planning and Logistics manager at Intel Puerto Rico and Intel Corporation.

Representative Cases

  • Successful defense of a class action claim brought against a master developer for alleged breach of contract and negligence seeking in excess of $10 million in damages. The Court of First Instance dismissed the complaint.  Plaintiffs appealed the ruling and the Court of Appeals reversed the trial court.  Defendant appealed the Appeals Court’s judgment and the Puerto Rico Supreme Court vacated. See Club Cala Palmas del Mar Property Owners, et al v. Palmas del Mar Properties Inc., et al., CC-07-0718 ( unpublished judgment).
  • Successful defense in a claim of nearly $ 4 million for alleged malpractice. See Cadillac Uniform and Linen Supply vs. PricewaterhouseCoopers, Civil No. K DP2007-1217.
  • Obtained summary judgment dismissing a product liability case. Judgment was affirmed by the Puerto Rico Court of Appeals.  Certiorari denied by the Puerto Rico Supreme Court.  See Bienvenido Osser v. Heineken, Civil No. Civil No. F DP2011-0271.
  • Defeated a preliminary and permanent injunction challenging a bid award regarding the administration of Bahia Urbana facilities. See Ticket Center, Inc. v. Autoridad del Centro del Distrito de Convenciones, et al Civil No. KPE2013-4101.
  • Successful defense in an action for preliminary and permanent injunction, damages and breach of contract filed by fourteen providers of a health network before the District Court for the District of Puerto Rico. See, Professional Health Care, et al v. AxisCare Health Logistics, et al, Civil No. 14‑1817 (CVR).
  • Defeated a motion for injunction possessory challenging the construction of a wind farm project in the Municipality of Naguabo. The Appellate Court affirmed the lower court’s dismissal of the complaint. See Pedro Green v. Punta Lima Wind Farm, Civil No. KLAN201400481.
  • Defeated a Judicial Revision Petition challenging a bid award of a health plan contract for the Puerto Rico Power Authority’s retirees. See, MCS Life Insurance v. Autoridad de Energía Eléctrica, Civil No. KLRA2015-01407.

Her Bids & Procurement work includes:

  • Puerto Rico Power Authority: Health plan contract for the Puerto Rico Power Authority’s retirees. The Court of Appeals confirmed the RFP award in favor of our client.
  • Puerto Rico Convention Center District Authority:  Administration of Bahia Urbana facilities. Defeated a preliminary and permanent injunction filed by the non-winning bidder.
  • Puerto Rico State Commission Election: Scanning vote counting system. The Puerto Rico State Commission Election cancelled the RFP award in favor of our client’s competitor.  In a subsequent RFP process, the agency granted the RFP in favor of our former client.
  • Department of Education: E-Rate contract for telecommunications and Internet access. The Court of Appeals confirmed the award in favor of our client.
  • Puerto Rico Power Authority: Copper Cables. The agency granted our motion for reconsideration. As a result, the Puerto Rico Power Authority awarded a portion of the contract, which was originally awarded to a competitor, in favor of our client.
  • Puerto Rico Power Authority: Electronic flight  instrument system for PREPA’S helicopter. Our motion for reconsideration was granted and the agency  cancelled the bid award in favor of client’s competitor.
  • Puerto Rico Department of Correction and Correction and Rehabilitation: Electronic shackle system. The Court of Appeals confirmed the award in favor of our client.


News & Publications

Bar Admissions


B.A., Cum Laude, University of Puerto Rico, 1983

Master Degree, University of Puerto Rico, 1985

J.D., Cum Laude, University of Puerto Rico Law School, 2005


Puerto Rico Bar Association

Puerto Rico Planning Association

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