Wanneer moet een overheidswaarborg als staatssteun aan de overheid worden toegerekend?

Hoge Raad 27 mei 2016 : Toerekening aan overheid is mogelijk, zelfs wanneer garantie eigenmachtig en wederrechtelijk werd verleend door bestuurder havenbedrijf


De Nederlandse Hoge Raad besliste in een arrest van 27 mei 2016 dat een garantie gesteld door de (enig) bestuurder van een openbaar bedrijf (i.c. een havenbedrijf), in principe kan worden toegerekend aan de overheid, zelfs indien die bestuurder eigenmachtig en wederrechtelijk heeft opgetreden. Er moet wel in concreto worden nagegaan of de overheid bij het verlenen van de garanties was betrokken. In deze zaak stelde de Hoge Raad ook twee prejudiciële vragen aan het Hof van Justitie (zie meer hier).

Continue reading “Wanneer moet een overheidswaarborg als staatssteun aan de overheid worden toegerekend?”

Values in bankruptcy law

“Suppose that a bankruptcy judge has two options in a bankruptcy proceeding of a factory. First, the judge could reorganize the factory, resulting in a $1,000,000 payment to creditors and keeping the factory largely intact. Second, the judge could liquidate the factory, resulting in a $1,500,000 payment to creditors and the loss of 1,000 jobs as the factory is shuttered. What should the bankruptcy judge choose?”

With this deliberately provocative question Zachary Liscow rekindles the debate about the fundamental values of bankruptcy law in a recent article published in the Columbia Law Review (read here). Continue reading “Values in bankruptcy law”

Debt: use it wisely

 “L’homme moderne est dans bien des cas plus enclin à la dépense que ne l’étaient ses ancêtres”  (F. H. Speth, La divisibilité du patrimoine et l’entreprise d’une personne, Parijs, L.G.D.J., 1958, 10)

Our society is credit driven. Consumers and companies borrow against future earnings to finance actual spending. Banks borrow for a living. The Government borrows to pay for social peace, pushing the bill towards future generations. Money for nothing only exists in pop songs. Credit eventually has to be paid by somebody, be it the debtor or society as a whole.

The International Monetary Fund recently publised a report on the proliferation of private sector debt. Continue reading “Debt: use it wisely”

Legal challenges in a world of negative interest rates

Banking in a Brave New World

Financial institutions, insurers, investors, and their legal counsel need to substantially adapt their way of thinking and operating in a negative interest rate environment

See post (Stibbe) here.

Corporate law after Brexit

Michael Schillig on Oxford Business Law Blog

“The safest option for UK incorporated companies that have their central administration in real seat countries is to convert into a company form of another Member State prior to Brexit taking effect”

See post here.

Distributions to shareholders: inspiration from the ‘partnership en commandite’?

In case of an irregular distribution a shareholder – even in good faith – is less deserving of protection than a creditor

A previous post had a look at the ancient partnership en commandite as a treasure-trove for company law reform. This post explores what we can learn from the ‘partnership en commandite’ for the regulation of  distributions to shareholders. Continue reading “Distributions to shareholders: inspiration from the ‘partnership en commandite’?”

The Insolvency Regulation (case-law)

SCI Senior Home – article 5 Regulation 1346/2000

In its judgment of today (read here), the Court of Justice interpreted article 5 of Regulation 1346/2000. Pursuant to this article, the opening of insolvency proceedings shall not affect the rights in rem of creditors or third parties in respect of tangible or intangible, moveable or immoveable assets – both specific assets and collections of indefinite assets as a whole which change from time to time – belonging to the debtor which are situated within the territory of another Member State at the time of the opening of proceedings.  Continue reading “The Insolvency Regulation (case-law)”

An ‘entity’ or not an ‘entity’, that is the question.

Is the common law trust an ‘entity’ on the same footing as a legal person?

In a seminal case regarding trust matters, the Court of Justice of the European Free Trade Association (‘EFTA Court’) has ruled in Olsen (7 July 2014) that a trust, as a form of establishment, may fall within the scope of articles 31 and 40 of the Agreement on the European Economic Area (‘EEA Agreement’). Continue reading “An ‘entity’ or not an ‘entity’, that is the question.”

Good faith in contractual dealings: abstract versus concrete


Many legal procedures focus on the question whether or not the contractants have acted in good faith. Long gone are the days that contracts were (just) considered to be the meeting point of antagonistic interests. René Demogue famously introduced the idea that contracts constitute a “petite société”, with the contractual parties having common – not divergent – interests (Traité des obligations en général, 1931, t. VI, 9). Continue reading “Good faith in contractual dealings: abstract versus concrete”

Recht.nl biedt interessant overzicht van Nederlandse proefschriften en oraties

Recht.nl geeft een niet te missen overzicht van Nederlandse proefschriften en oraties in ‘open access’. Interesseerden ons onder meer: Continue reading “Recht.nl biedt interessant overzicht van Nederlandse proefschriften en oraties”

Real seat by any other name would smell as sweet?

The Kornhaas judgment: insolvency law as a safe harbour for Real Seat provisions?

In its judgment of 10 December 2015 (C‑594/14, Kornhaas), the European Court of Justice (CJEU) addressed two issues which are at the heart of the debate on the intra-Union mobility of companies: Continue reading “Real seat by any other name would smell as sweet?”

De stichting: het ideale middel om goederen te ‘beschermen’ tegen schuldeisers?

Hoge Raad brengt in herinnering hoe een stichting gebruikt kan worden om schuldeisers te benadelen.  

Een stichting laat toe om een goed in een afgescheiden vermogen onder te brengen. Dat impliceert dat de schuldeisers van de begunstigden van de stichting de stichtingsgoederen niet kunnen uitwinnen. Evenmin hebben ze makkelijke opties om het stichtingsvermogen open te breken door een ontbindingsvordering. Continue reading “De stichting: het ideale middel om goederen te ‘beschermen’ tegen schuldeisers?”

The Economist on Hart & Holmström

Link here. See previous post here.


Our own private Delaware: the ‘partnership en commandite’

Lessons from an ancient experiment with light vehicles: on moral hazard, agency problems, publicity systems and the unsavoury regions of Flanders

The limited partnership or “partnership en commandite” (commenda, société en commandite, Kommanditgesellschaft) has been a fixture of continental business law since the 12th century. It is an entity with one or more unlimited partners and one or more limited partners. For a long time, the limited partnership was the only form offering limited liability off-the-shelf, without the need for a specific governmental authorization. In many jurisdictions the “partnership en commandite” still enjoys a quiet popularity. Continue reading “Our own private Delaware: the ‘partnership en commandite’”

Everybody loses … except the lawyers

Settlement in the bankruptcy liquidation of Nortel


This week it was reported that a settlement has been reached in the bankruptcy liquidation of Nortel Networks Corp (read here). The Nortel group once was one of the world’s leading providers of telecommunications network solutions.

The insolvency of the Nortel Group was a dream for scholars of international insolvency law. Continue reading “Everybody loses … except the lawyers”

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