Tag Archives: litigation

“But, we had a deal!” – Office Holders and Personal Liability for Costs

The recent Court of Appeal case of Stevensdrake Limited v Stephen Hunt [2017] EWCA Civ 1173 provides guidance on whether the office holder is liable to meet the legal costs in CFA cases where there are insufficient recoveries in the estate to meet those costs. Central to costs assessments in litigation proceedings is what is … Continue Reading

The enforcement of pre-existing security over assets that become subject to a freezing order

A recent decision in the High Court provided guidance with respect to the apparent conflict between freezing orders that have been granted over assets that are subject to an existing security. Generally speaking, a freezing order should only catch the unsecured elements of assets. The question facing the court in Taylor v Van Dutch Marine … Continue Reading

Does ATE insurance trump Security for Costs?

When reviewing a security for costs application under CPR 25.12, the courts are faced with the challenge of striking a balance between an impecunious claimant’s access to justice and the possibility of a successful defendant being unable to recover their costs. This is because the general rule in relation to costs under CPR 44.2 is … Continue Reading

The High Court in London goes digital

As of 25 April 2017, for courts within the Chancery division of the High Court in London, the filing of all applications, forms and documents must be performed electronically. This includes the Bankruptcy and Companies Courts within Greater London. It does not apply to the High Courts outside London. Where once a lawyer might expect … Continue Reading

Insolvencies in Germany – New Avoidance Law in Force

On 5 April 2017, an amendment to the German Insolvency Code (Insolvenzordnung – “InsO”) has come into force which provides for various changes to the avoidance rules and clawback laws in German insolvency proceedings. The major change affects the right of an insolvency administrator to challenge transactions for willful disadvantage (§ 133 InsO).… Continue Reading

Spanish Court declares unlimited liability mortgage clause void

Spain’s Civil Code provides that when the sale proceeds of a mortgaged property do not cover all the debt contracted with the bank, the debt continues to subsist and the bank may go against any other asset belonging to the customer, with the exception of properties that are untouchable, for the shortfall. However, a Court in Barcelona has … Continue Reading

We’ve heard it all before: re-running arguments in bankruptcy proceedings

The Court of Appeal in Harvey v Dunbar Assets plc [2017] EWCA Civ 60 has confirmed that parties cannot re-litigate failed arguments that have previously been presented in bankruptcy proceedings. This will be welcome news for creditors in situations where debtors rehearse the same arguments at several stages of the bankruptcy process in an attempt … Continue Reading

Beware French Employees’ Remedy for Damage to their “Individual Interests”

It is not always easy to prioritize between the various goals pursued in every insolvency legislation, namely; the continuation of the company, preservation of the jobs, the general economic/public interest and the payment of dividends to creditors. There is no clear hierarchy in French law amongst these major targets and French case law appears fairly pragmatic. … Continue Reading

Chancellor of English High Court looks to a post-Brexit future

In an address last week to the Insolvency Lawyers Association, Sir Geoffrey Vos, the new Chancellor of the High Court, looked at the future for Insolvency and Business Litigation in London, especially after Brexit. Whilst acknowledging that Brexit presents a challenge, he said it is one which should not defeat the English Courts. The main issue … Continue Reading

Cross Border Insolvency Regulations 2006- Lifting the automatic stay on proceedings in the English courts

The English Court has agreed to lift the automatic stay on proceedings under the Cross Border Insolvency Regulations 2006 (“CBIR”) against STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co Ltd (“STX”) which had entered into rehabilitation proceedings in Korea. Facts STX had guaranteed to Ronelp Marine Limited and others (“Claimants”) the performance of a subsidiary (Dallan) in relation to … Continue Reading

Creditors v Private Pension Holders – has UK bankruptcy law gone too soft?

The recent Court of Appeal decision in Horton v Henry has highlighted the protection afforded to a bankrupt holding a private pension to the detriment of his bankruptcy creditors. Facts The bankrupt, Mr Henry, was the holder of  a number of pension policies all of which contained provisions entitling him to make elections which would trigger rights to … Continue Reading

Reviewing the Ratings

Multiple class actions have been commenced in the Australian Federal Court  in relation to losses suffered by investors in synthetic collateralised debt obligations and other financial products, some of which were distributed or sold by Lehman Brothers Australia Ltd (in liquidation) and by certain major Australian banks, and were assigned credit ratings by Standard and Poor’s. … Continue Reading

Why financiers should consider taking security over short leases

When we review security for financiers, we always consider what enhancements they might implement to strengthen their security net. As part of this approach, we obtain a proprietor search from the Land Registry to see if there is any uncharged property in the name of the borrower. Often, any property identified is a short to … Continue Reading

Is it possible to Restructure in Russia?

Theoretically, a Russian debtor is able to reorganize. In practice, the law currently does not encourage voluntary restructuring of debt in a way designed to preserve the continued operation of business and jobs.  The interests of debtors and creditors are not appropriately balanced at present to achieve the best results.  Creditors currently have a strong … Continue Reading

When an Asset is not an Asset

The Court of Appeal has recently considered the status of contingent assets within the balance sheet test for insolvency in the context of a company’s inability to pay its debts. Under Section 123 Insolvency Act 1986, a company is deemed unable to pay its debts if its assets are less than its liabilities including contingent … Continue Reading

German Insolvency Law applies to Director of English Company operating in Germany

The statistics show that over 10,000 English limited companies operate in Germany. The company is registered in the Companies Register in the UK, but has a branch active in Germany, which is registered in German Company registries. On 10 December 2015 the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) decided on the question whether … Continue Reading

France Publishes Final List of 19 Specialised Insolvency Commercial Courts

The French government has made the assessment that certain small commercial courts were regularly finding themselves confronted with cases of great complexity, only because the company in difficulty had its head office in the jurisdiction of these courts. It therefore announced the establishment of specialised commercial courts (TCS) which will process the most complex insolvency proceedings. … Continue Reading

Interest Rate Mis-selling – Temporary Relief For Banks

The interest rate mis-selling scandal took another twist recently when a landmark legal case was dismissed by the High Court. Had the case been successful it would have challenged the banks’ £2.1bn compensation scheme set-up to settle inappropriate interest rate swaps – however the decision only brings temporary relief for the banks. Background A judicial review … Continue Reading

Wrongful Trading – IPs Need to Demonstrate an Increase in Net Deficiency for a Successful Claim

Directors of a company are subject to certain duties under the Companies Act 2006. These duties are of obvious importance throughout their service as a director but some of them become particularly important during the period leading up to the insolvency of the company. If a current or former director of a company knew or … Continue Reading

A rock and a hard place…

It is very much the nature of the job that appointed Office Holders are required to make difficult and challenging decisions on each and every case they take. On some occasions those decisions are well received – on others, not so well. Creditors affected by those decisions can take comfort that the Office Holder is … Continue Reading
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