28th Apr 2021 | Articles

Christopher Loxton has written an article on the mutual recognition and enforcement of insolvencies in the EU post-Brexit.

As is known all too well, 31 December 2020 marked the end of the transitional period, agreed as part of the 2019 Withdrawal Agreement, in which the effect of EU membership continued to apply in and to the UK.  As the 2020 EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement made no provision for continued recognition of, or co-operation in, insolvency and restructuring proceedings across the EU, The Insolvency (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 came into force and repealed the vast majority of relevant EU law.

The EU Insolvency Regulation (‘the EUIR’)[1] continues to apply to “main”[2] proceedings opened in an EU member state or the UK on or before 11pm on 31 December 2020, and any related “secondary” proceedings[3].  However, from 1 January 2021, the law of the UK and that of individual EU member states apply to new insolvency proceedings for the purposes of recognition and enforcement cross-border.

The Recast Brussels Regulation (No.1215/2012) also no longer applies between the UK and EU meaning the enforcement of civil judgments, including in relation to UK schemes of arrangement (which are not considered ‘insolvency proceedings’)  as they are not – in the strict sense – insolvency proceedings and are therefore more akin to general civil proceedings.

The change brought about by Brexit represents a seismic change in the way that insolvency proceedings with cross-border assets and interests between the UK and EU are dealt with.  For proceedings commenced after 1 January, gone are the EUIR’s provisions for automatic recognition of UK insolvency proceedings and enforcement safeguards in EU member states…

Continue reading this article here

[1] No.2015/848.
[2] Defined as proceedings in the courts of the state in which the debtor’s main interests lie.
[3] As defined in Chapter II of Reg.2015/848.

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