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Welcome / Blog Archive / Book Review / 2020-12-doc1 Bork – Corporate Insolvency Law 2020

2020-12-doc1 Bork – Corporate Insolvency Law 2020

In a new book, titled Corporate Insolvency Law, the author prof. Reinhard Bork presents, as its subtitle indicates, a comparative textbook.  It deals with the key topics of corporate insolvency law in a comparative way, using the laws of the UK, the USA, Germany and France as examples. Its chosen down to earth approach differs from his well-known Principles of Cross-border Insolvency Law boof from 2017, in which cross-border insolvency rules of all kinds were distilled from basic values. See for a review

Bork’s treatment in his new book (after an introduction) concerns the following nine chapters (2) parties involved, (3) commencement of proceedings, (4) the estate, (5) effects of the opening of insolvency proceedings, (6) transactions avoidance, (7) rights and ranking of creditors, (8) restructuring proceedings, (9) discharge and consumer proceedings, and (10) cross-border insolvency law. These are presented in a clear way, explaining the mechanics of insolvency and restructuring proceedings in any given jurisdiction, including short references to case law from the countries mentioned. Bork also treats CJEU cases and in his text adds principled based commentary on nearly every page, referring the 2002 Principles of European Insolvency Law (PEIL) and several UNCITRAL sources. The reader here will understand the usefulness of comparative research, also creating an understanding of the values and function of insolvency rules. It also sharpens the view that in their key components any national insolvency law deals with the problems and questions which present themselves every time and again, wherever the debtor or the creditor is located.

In certain aspects the book could win by treating topics such as digital assets, treatment of environmental claims or effects of the proceedings on arbitration. Restructuring seems a rather new kid on the block, treated on several pages and more in depth in chapter 8. As a collaborative author, Bork is aware of a principled based source, which could broaden and deepen the themes presented in the book. See the European Law Institute’s Instrument on Business rescue (

Bork’s book mirrors extensive comparative research and is an enriching experience for its readers. It is very timely and welcome, both for advanced law students and insolvency practice. In the EU as well as in several member states drafters are peeking into other countries’ legislation as they understand that ongoing inter-connexion in markets, cross-border trade and investment and, looking ahead: the EU capital markets union, is a continuing development. In all: the book is a reliable authority and the author a very sound guide into this future.

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Note: this book I received free of charge from the publisher with the request to announce it or to review it on my blog at