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Reform of insolvency procedures

In the last year of the XVII legislature, the Parliament has approved the law n. 155 of 2017, which delegates the Government to carry out a broad reform of the discipline of business crises and insolvency.

This law intends to indicate the general principles common to the phenomenon of insolvency that can serve as points of reference for the various procedures with the due differentiations made necessary by the different forms in which insolvency can occur.

Alert  mechanisms  are set  up  aimed  at  preventing  the  irreversibility  of  corporate  crises  and increasingly greater relevance is given to out-of-court  settlement instruments in order to favour the mediation  between  debtors  and  creditors  in the  management of  the  supervening insolvency situation.

Among the main changes introduced by the reform project, deserves particular attentionthe new position of prominence held by the bankruptcy trustee, which sees itself invested with more powers in the management of the business crisis.

The main features include enhanced access to the public administration databases, the right of the shareholders and of the  social creditors to promote the legal actions and, finally, the direct  management of the asset allocation between the creditors, previously entrusted to the appointed judge.

As a counter to the greater powers of the bankruptcy trustee  are  laid  down  more  stringent  rules  on  the incompatibility of the same.

In order to facilitate an assisted settlement, it is envisaged that a preventive warning phase could be activated directly by the debtor or by the court by means of a notification from public creditors. In case of voluntary procedure, the debtor will be assisted by a special body established at the Chambers of Commerce and will have 6 months to reach an agreed solution with the creditors. On the contrary, if the procedure was activated by office, the judge will immediately and confidentially convoke the debtor and entrust an expert to resolve the crisis by finding an agreement within 6 months with the creditors.

The entrepreneur who promptly  activates the alert or makes use of other  institutions  for  the  agreed  resolution  of  the  crisis  will  enjoy  reward  measures. Listed companies and large companies are excluded from the alert procedure.