The Federal Government recently released the draft Insolvency Law Reform Bill 2013 (Reform Bill) for public comment. The Reform Bill contains a number of changes to the way that insolvency practitioners are registered, disciplined and regulated and in the areas of regulator and creditor powers in personal and corporate external administrations.
The Reform Bill proposes a number of changes in three main areas, namely:
The amendments follow proposed reforms discussed in a number of reviews, most recently the Senate Economics References Committee report on The Regulation, Registration and Remuneration of Insolvency Practitioners in Australia released in September 2010 and the Federal Government's Options Paper entitled A Modernisation and Harmonisation of the Regulatory Framework applying to Insolvency Practitioners in Australia, released in June 2011.
Set out below is a summary of the main reforms in each of these areas.
The main changes in this area are:
The Explanatory Document to the Reform Bill states that the majority of the amendments are expected to take effect from September 2013. The amendments to the registration and discipline of insolvency practitioners, and new director disqualification provisions, are expected to commence in February 2014.
Interested parties had until 8 March 2013 to make a submission to The Treasury concerning the Reform Bill.
The Reform Bill and Explanatory Document are both available from the Federal Government Treasury website.
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