Corporate / M&A

Key Features of the New Insolvency Proceedings Rules in Serbia

The Amendments and Supplements to the Insolvency Act introduces changes aimed to allow for more efficient realisation of insolvency creditors’ claims.

General amendments and supplements to the insolvency proceedings

On 2 August 2014, the Serbian parliament amended and supplemented the insolvency proceedings by adopting the Amendments and Supplements to the Insolvency Act (the Act). The Act was adopted to bring changes to the insolvency proceeding that would allow for more efficient realisation of insolvency creditors’ claims. Such aim is hoped to be achieved through elimination of vague and incomplete provisions that proved to be problematic in practice.

Improvements of insolvency proceedings in terms of efficiency and realisation of claims brought by the Act are generally at the technical level and do not change the essence or mechanics of realisation of insolvency claims within insolvency proceedings.

The creditors’ committee and assembly

Whereas participation in an assembly is now based on the appraisal of security assets (which must be conducted only authorised persons and not be older than 12 months), participation in the committee is now open to insolvency creditors irrespective of the amount of their claim, thus protecting the interests of minority insolvency creditors.

Transparency

The Act introduces (i) the insolvency court’s electronic notice board (for publication of all court-rendered legal acts), (ii) the insolvency court’s public portal (for publication of insolvency proceedings filings by all proceedings participants) and (ii) the obligation of the agency authorised to keep a directory of insolvency receivers to publicise the insolvency receiver’s quarterly reports.

Broader competencies of the insolvency receiver

The insolvency receiver now has a duty to challenge actions of insolvency debtor that are to its detriment. If successful, the challenge will result in an increase in value of insolvency estate as challenged actions are rescinded.

Introduction of collateralised creditors

Collateralised creditors (založni poverioci) are introduced as a new type of creditor of insolvent debtor, but not as insolvency creditors. Those creditors do not hold a monetary claim towards insolvency debtor but are secured by a security interest provided by insolvency debtor.

Assignment of insolvency claims

Insolvency claims now may explicitly be assigned by an assignment agreement concluded until a decision on the main distribution of the insolvency estate is rendered. The insolvency debtor must be notified about such agreement (ie, assignment).

Equitable subordination

The Act introduces a new payment priority rank, the fourth payment priority rank, which is the least prioritised as it is subordinated by three higher payment priority ranks. Such payment rank is reserved for claims (or portions of unsecured claims) fulfilling the following criteria:

  1. established within two years prior to the opening of insolvency proceedings;
  2. arise from loan agreements or other arrangements that have a similar economic effect as loans; and
  3. in favour of affiliated persons whose principal business activity is not providing loans or credits.

Cross-border insolvency

Cross-border insolvency has been amended by introduction of a new primary criteria for jurisdiction establishment. Now, the criterion used for establishing court jurisdiction over certain insolvency case is the centre of main interests of the insolvency debtor, rather than its registered corporate seat.

Reorganisation

Content of the reorganisation plan
The Act envisages additions to content of the reorganisation plan in the form of:

  1. information about persons who are to become, on the basis of the reorganisation plan, shareholders of an insolvency debtor;
  2. information about affiliated persons; and
  3. appraisal of insolvency debtor’s property rendered within six months prior to submission of the reorganisation plan.

Independent supervisor for implementation of the reorganisation plan
An independent supervisor for implementation of the reorganisation plan, under the Act, may not be a person employed by the insolvency debtor or affiliated person.
Voting for the reorganisation plan
Creditors with separation rights may not vote for the reorganisation plan; however, the reorganisation plan may not contain elements that would diminish their security interest.
Opinion of the competition authorities
Under the Act, the opinion of competition authorities is no longer required for adoption of reorganisation plan if the insolvency debtor is classified as a small enterprise (such opinion is required if the insolvency debtor is classified as a medium or large enterprise).

Improvement of insolvency proceedings in terms of efficiency and realisation of claims brought by the Act are generally at the technical level and do not change the essence or mechanics of realisation of insolvency claims within insolvency proceedings.

Glavne karakteristike novih pravila o stečajnom postupku u Srbiji

Izmene i dopune Zakona o stečaju uvode promene usmerene ka efikasnijoj naplati potraživanja stečajnih poverilaca.

Generalne izmene i dopune stečajnog postupka

Narodna skupština Srbije je usvojila Izmene i Dopune Zakona o stečajnom postupku ( Zakon ) 2.avgusta 2014, i time izmenila i dopunila stečajni postupak. Zakon je usvojen kako bi uveo promene u stečajnom postupku koje bi omogućile efikasniju naplatu potraživanja stečajnih poverilaca. Nada se da će se takav cilj postići eliminacijom nejasnih i nepotpunih odredaba, koje su se pokazale kao problematične u praksi.

Poboljšanja u stečajnom postupku u pogledu efikasnosti i naplate potraživanja, koje donosi Zakon, su generalno na tehničkom nivou i ne menjaju suštinu i mehanizam naplate potraživanja u stečajnom postupku.

Odbor i Skupština poverilaca

S obzirom da je učešće u skupštini društva sada zasnovano na proceni vrednosti obezbeđene imovine, (koja mora biti sačinjena od strane ovlašćenog lica i koja nije starija od 12 meseci), učešće u odboru društva je sada otvoreno za stečajne poverioce bez obzira na iznos njihovog potraživanja, čime se štite interesi manjinskih stečajnih poverilaca.

Transparentnost

Zakon uvodi (i) elektronsku oglasnu tablu za stečaj (za objavljivanje svih izrečenih sudskih pravnih akata), (ii) javni portal za stečaj (za objavljivanje podnesaka od strane svih učesnika u stečajnom postupku) i (iii) obavezu agencije ovlašćene da vodi listu stečajnih upravnika, da objavljuje tromesečne izveštaje stečajnih upravnika.

Šira nadležnost stečajnog upravnika

Stečajni upravnik sada ima dužnost da ospori štetne radnje stečajnog dužnika. Ako bude uspešno, osporavanje će dovesti do povećanja vrednosti stečajne mase, ukoliko osporene radnje budu ukinute.

Uvođenje založnih poverilaca

Stečajni poverioci su uvode kao novi tip poverilaca stečajnog dužnika, ali ne kao poverioci stečajnog postupka. Ti poverioci nemaju novčano potraživanje prema stečajnom poveriocu, ali imaju stvarno-pravno obezbeđenje na imovini stečajnog dužnika.

Prenos potraživanja u stečajnom postupku

Potraživanje u stečajnom postupku se sada izričito može preneti putem zaključenja ugovora o prenosu potraživanja, do dana pravosnažnosti rešenja o glavnoj deobi.Stečajni dužnik mora biti obavešten o takvom ugovoru (prenosu).

Pravična subordinacija

Zakon uvodi novi isplatni red, četvrti isplatni red, koji je najmanje prioritetan, jer prednost imaju prva tri isplatna reda. Takav isplatni red je rezervisan za potraživanja (ili delova neosiguranih potraživanja ) koja ispune sledeće kriterijume:

  1. nastala dve godine pre dana otvaranja stečajnog postupka;
  2. nastala na osnovu zajma ili drugih pravnih radnji koje imaju sličan ekonomski efekat kao zajam; i
  3. u korist povezanih lica čija osnovna delatnost ne predviđa zajmove i kredite.

Međunarodni stečaj

Međunarodni stečaj je izmenjen uvođenjem novog kriterijuma za uspostavljanje nadležnosti. Kriterijum za uspostavljanje sudske nadležnosti u određenom stečajnom postupku je sada središte glavnih interesa stečajnog dužnika, a ne registrovano sedište.

Reorganizacija

Sadržaj plana reorganizacije
Zakon predviđa dodatke planu reorganizacije u obliku:

  1. informacije o licima koje će na osnovu plana reogrganizacije da postanu akcionari stečajnog dužnika;
  2. informacije o povezanim licima; i
  3. procene imovine stečajnog dužnika koja je donešena šest meseci pre podnošenja plana reorganizacije.

Nezavisni kontroler/supervizor za sprovođenje plana reorganizacije
Po Zakonu, nezavisni supervizor za sprovođenje plana reorganizacije ne može biti zaposleno lice od strane stečajnog dužnika ili povezanog lica.
Glasanje za plan reorganizacije
Založni poverioci, koji nisu razlučni poverioci, ne mogu glasati o planu reorganizacije; međutim, reorganizacioni plan ne sme da sadrži elemente koji će dovesti do smanjenja njihovog obezbeđenog prava.
Mišljenje organa nadležnog za zaštitu konkurencije
Prema Zakonu, mišljenje organa nadležnog za zaštitu konkurencije nije više potrebno za usvajanje plana reorganizacije, ako se stečajni dužnik klasifikuje kao malo pravno lice (takvo mišljenje je potrebno ako se stečajni dužnik klasifikuje kao srednje ili veliko pravno lice).

Poboljšanje stečajnog postupka u smislu efikasnosti i naplate potraživanja, koje donosi Zakon su generalno na tehničkom nivou i ne menjaju suštinu i mehanizam naplate potraživanja u stečajnom postupku.