Professor Bork (University of Hamburg) is one of the most active authors in Europe about all aspects of international insolvency law, be it European, comparative or international, both practical as well as theoretical. In his new book Advanced introduction to Cross-Border Insolvency Law, he introduces the applicable codification, under which term he includes transnational law, non-binding recommendations (soft law, although not everyone would agree), national laws (in which countries unilaterally have adopted certain international insolvency rules (section 335 in Germany, 426 in the UK – although only in relation to Commonwealth countries – art. 203-205 in the Netherlands, seldom used), the EU Insolvency Regulation and the UNCITRAL Model Law).
All these rules are based, Bork submits, on common principles of cross-border insolvency law, which can be identified as basic tenets for the area of international insolvency law. He distinguishes and groups several principles into three groups: conflict of laws principles (e.g. unity, universality, equality, mutual trust, cooperation and communication, subsidiarity, proportionality), procedural principles (e.g. efficiency, transparency, predictability, procedural justice, priority) and substantive principles (e.g. equal treatment of creditors, optimal realisation of the debtor’s assets, debtor protection, protection of trust (for secured creditors or contractual partners), social protection (for employees or tenants)). We know this approach from Bork’s book of 2017 on Principles of Cross-Border Insolvency law, which I reviewed, see https://bobwessels.nl/blog/2017-10-doc1-book-bork-on-cross-border-insolvency-law/.
For learning and understanding cross-border insolvency law, in the book reviewed here, Bork explains his principles by providing examples. By doing so, the chapter following are set in a recognisable system: international jurisdiction, applicable law, recognition, cooperation and coordination, secondary proceedings, the position of foreign creditors in domestic proceedings and group insolvencies. Prof. Bork’s book in this way is a fine introduction to the field of European and international insolvency law, mainly the Regulation and the UNCITRAL Model Law, on these legal matters. The book has an appealingly clear and logical structure which will be of great assistance to students of the field. The bibliography (regretfully not listing the latest edition of my 2022 Volume on International insolvency law, including fresh chapters on ‘soft laws’ and on ‘protocols’) and the index are helpful for further research. In all, also in its comparative treatment the book is a must read for academics and practitioners, looking for a brief and concise introduction.
Reinhard Bork, Advanced introduction to Cross-Border Insolvency Law, Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham, UK / Northampton, MA, USA, 2023. ISBN 978 1 78990 638 7.
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 www.bobwessels.nl.