Amendment to concordato preventivo discipline
The Italian Government provisionally approved certain minimal amendments to the rules governing the concordato preventivo proceeding. The amendment will now have to be approved by the Italian Parliament before becoming final.
The provisional amendment resizes the recent and relevant amendment of September 2012 (see ITALY RESTRUCTURING UPDATE of November 2012): the so-called “blank filing” (“concordato in bianco“), i.e., the possibility for the insolvent debtor to file for the proceeding without a drafted plan, that can presently be filed within a term (granted by the relevant court) of 60-180 days, depending on the circumstances.
The “blank filing” was enacted on September 2012 in order to permit insolvent companies to avoid the opening of ordinary bankruptcy proceeding (fallimento) and immediately stopover enforcement actions on the assets in order to give relief for planning the restructuring (i.e. automatic stay).
In order to avoid abusive conducts of this tool (e.g., blank filings aimed only at postponing the inevitable ordinary bankruptcy proceeding and not aimed at planning restructurings) the amendment to the law provides that the debtor shall now file along with the petition for concordato preventivo a detailed list of the creditors and of the debts. In addition, the relevant bankruptcy court is now entitled to immediately appoint an administrator (commissario giudiziale) that will accompany the debtor in the process and has to verify (and refer to the court) as to whether the debtor is effectively working on the restructuring plan.
The enacted amendment actually does not seem to be of material substance and appears unable to provide a solution for the major issues and concerns related to the concordato preventivo discipline.