We Rent Copiers Supports Puerto Rico Bankruptcy Battles

We Rent Copiers
April 16, 2024

Every day, thousands of legal proceedings take place across the United States. Many of these cases require an onsite presence by a legal team overseeing the matter.

That’s no problem when the case is local.

But what about when the case is held in a jurisdiction on the other side of the country — or even one outside of the US mainland?

It’s a tough logistical hurdle, and one that We Rent Copiers just experienced while assisting with post-bankruptcy proceedings in Puerto Rico.

Here’s a closer look at how we helped multiple law firms (and even the Puerto Rican government!) succeed during the most recent legal scramble.

An image of San Juan, Puerto Rico including a view of the city and coastline.
San Juan, Puerto Rico. Credit: Wei Zeng on Unsplash

What’s going on in Puerto Rico

The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico filed for bankruptcy in 2017 after years of corruption, mismanagement, and excess borrowing ran up a $73 billion debt.

This crisis prompted the United States Congress to enact the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA), which created the Financial Oversight and Management Board (FOMB) to oversee the debt restructuring plan.

It’s been a long road, and the commonwealth is still struggling to satisfy bondholders as filings make their way through federal and district courts.

Most recently, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) accumulated massive debt. Hearings surrounding a debt restructuring plan began in March 2024 in San Juan.

Because Puerto Rico is a US territory, the legal battles surrounding Puerto Rico’s debt have been handled, in large part, by legal teams based in the US mainland.

To ensure their teams could continue working smoothly while operating so far from their home office, leading legal firms turned to We Rent Copiers for help.

A map of the Caribbean Islands with a line measurement drawn between San Juan, Puerto Rico and Miami, Florida — a distance of roughly 1000 miles.
Puerto Rico is roughly 1000 miles from the US mainland, a fact which necessitates shipping by sea or air for commercial office equipment.

We Rent Copiers ships to Puerto Rico

If you aren’t a geography buff, Puerto Rico is located roughly 1000 miles southeast of Miami. The fastest trip is a 2-hour flight (one way) with a commercial airline.

But shipping commercial office equipment is more complicated. 

In order to reach the island, MFPs, copiers, and other commercial office equipment needs to be shipped to a Florida port (usually Jacksonville), and then loaded on a freighter destined for San Juan. Import taxes also need to be paid through Puerto Rico’s Department of Treasury, even though the equipment is only used temporarily.

To further complicate matters, many mainland amenities aren’t present on the island.

Similar to many locales in smaller US towns and cities, local vendors provide some rental capabilities. However, none have the bandwidth to fully furnish a temporary office or rent out high quantities of office equipment on a short-term basis.

Customers began reaching out to us to furnish last-minute workspaces in Puerto Rico as local bankruptcy cases began to move through the courts.

In most cases, we were given less than two weeks notice (as little as three days on a priority order) to facilitate the transfer, shipment, and delivery of the requested equipment to the island.

It was no small feat.

Our team leapt into action, working to relocate the equipment and secure water-based transportation that fit within our timeframe.

Over the following weeks, we shipped roughly 20 commercial copiers to Puerto Rico, along with other equipment needed to create an integrated office setup, on behalf of our customers.

A freighter docked at a port is loaded by five commercial cranes.
Shipping to San Juan required the use of a freighter, required additional logistics to ensure a timely delivery. Photo by Jacob Meissner on Unsplash

On the ground in Puerto Rico

Once the equipment arrived in Puerto Rico, our team on the ground still needed to configure and install everything so that customers could use their offices.

Before our customers arrived, delivery teams offloaded the equipment to various hotels and office buildings around San Juan, moved it to the desired locations, and set everything up.

While our customers were busy flying from the mainland, and preparing their legal arguments regarding the restructuring process, our teams were hard at work configuring office equipment so that they could get to work as soon as they arrived.

We configured our printers to the highest security standards to ensure end-to-end data encryption from client to machine.

Our teams also worked closely with IT and security teams from our customer’s home office to ensure that information was secured according to their rules.

Quick note: Security compliance isn’t exclusive to customers in the legal field. If your team has specific security needs, discuss them with us!

Once the offices and equipment were configured, our teams transitioned to support roles for the duration of the contract.

IT and onsite tech support is limited in Puerto Rico (and in many other places around the US). We equipped our team with backup parts, spare toner, and a variety of repair components for each machine in our fleet.

While we routinely clean and maintain our equipment, breakdowns are an inevitability when working with machines that undergo heavy use in the field. Our teams were equipped with everything required to troubleshoot on the fly and minimize downtime so that our customers could succeed.

We Rent Copiers handles the office setup and maintenance so that customers can find success in every discipline.

Finding success from afar

Working so far from a home office can be a major challenge, especially when the work that needs to be done has little to do with the task at hand.

For most firms, it doesn’t make fiscal sense to have a highly trained, highly paid lawyer or paralegal troubleshooting office equipment or spending hours on the phone with support teams who aren’t knowledgeable.

While the away team is waiting on a fix or dealing with slow hardware, operating costs add up — and that affects everyone’s bottom line.

Keeping costs low through streamlined workflow and stellar support is at the heart of what we do at We Rent Copiers.

It’s why our work in Puerto Rico was a resounding success. The added support from our team helped our customers stay focused, fresh, and ready to face the challenges at hand.

In our books, that’s a win.

Work with We Rent Copiers

Have an upcoming court trial or event?

Our team can help you furnish and deploy a temporary office or legal war room anywhere in the US, including all US territories.

Browse our entire fleet of commercial copiers, printers, and other solutions. You can also get in touch with our team right here or by clicking the chat button in the bottom right corner of your browser window.

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