Flying low – an airline’s ‘extraordinary’ response to a $19m penalty

A major international airline turned up to court to seek a stay of a A$19m penalty with evidence so inadequate that the Judge described it as “extraordinary” for a significant state-owned entity in an “extremely serious” situation. Following 9 years of litigation and a 6 month trial, a A$19 million penalty was imposed on Garuda […]

International insolvency law and Australia’s UNCCA

A newly qualified Australian lawyer who was sponsored through UNCCA and LAWASIA to attend Insolvency Working Group V in Vienna in December 2018, is pursuing further research in international law in the Netherlands. I was very pleased to have been invited to the admission as an Australian lawyer of my colleague Samantha Pacchiarotta in the […]

Choosing courts in cross-border insolvency applications

As a federation, Australia has a mix of state and territory and federal courts, each with their own jurisdictions. Jurisdiction is however shared between courts in corporations matters, including those concerning the insolvency of companies under Ch 5 of the Australian Corporations Act 2001. Litigants have a choice of the Federal Court or the State […]

Australian insolvency law – current reforms

As in many countries, general elections put law changes and reform on hold pending the new government’s decisions on pending law. The government was returned in Australia at the recent May election and this is a convenient time to review where Australian insolvency law reform is at the moment, or as much can be anticipated. […]

“Shortcomings of the Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvency (just some)”

Professor Martin Davies of Tulane Maritime Law Center recently offered a critique of the Model Law on Cross Border Insolvency at a presentation at Sydney University Law School. As he said: “shortcomings of the Model Law (just some)”. Limitation on recognition of foreign judgments An early problem with the Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvency was […]

NZ’s 2019 Insolvency Practitioners Regulation Act and its cross-Tasman impact

NZ’s Insolvency Practitioners Regulation Act is due to commence over the next year introducing a licensing and regulatory regime for insolvency practitioners (IPs) under a co-regulatory arrangement similar to that introduced in the UK in 1986. While many relevant details are yet to be developed, some initial thoughts are offered in relation to Australian IPs […]

‘Your place or mine, and for how long?’ – a lack of judicial independence

We might have noticed that courts in Australia and indeed in most comparable countries are usually housed in their own buildings, one reason being the need to keep the administration of justice separate and independent from any commercial or government environment and arrangements – both in reality and in perception. The decisions of trial and […]

The future of the insolvency ‘profession’

I was pleased to have given a presentation on the future of the insolvency profession, at Griffith University’s excellent Professional Futures Conference on 6-7 February 2019.  This is my brief account, with some questions about professionalism following. My talk examined whether insolvency was in fact a profession, or an emerging one, or an industry.  The […]

Insolvency administrator’s lack of attention to the sale of complex assets

A UK insolvency administrator has been found to have acted in breach of his duties to a broadcasting company, some 8 years after the conduct in question, in an action brought by the company’s liquidators.  Compensation exceeding £740,000 was ordered.   The breaches involved his conduct in selling the company’s assets, in particular its Electronic […]