走进澳洲 | 清算 Liquidation
Last week’s article provided our readers with an outline of:i. the process of voluntary administration,ii. the role of the administrator,iii. the rights of creditors during the course of administration, andiv. the possible outcomes of voluntary administration.接管程序的一个结果是公司进入清算程序。如果采取这种措施，除非另作决议，否则接管人将成为清算人。One outcome of administration is for the company to enter into liquidation, if this course of action is taken, and unless resolved otherwise, the administrator will ordinarily become the liquidator.本文的第一部分将试图让读者了解清算的目的和过程，第二部分将深入探讨债权人的权利。Part 1 of this article will then seek to provide readers with an understanding of the purpose and process of liquidation, whilst part 2 will delve into the rights of creditors.
Liquidation of an insolvent company
清算的目的是，让一个独立于破产公司事务的有资质的人，来控制和清算该公司。与破产接管人非常相似，清算人的目标是为所有债权人提供一个公平的结果。The purpose of liquidation is for a duly qualified person, independent of the affairs of the insolvent company, to take control and wind up its affairs. Much like the administrator, the liquidator aims to provide a fair result to all creditors.As with the process of administration, there are two types of liquidation:i. creditors’ voluntary liquidation, andii. court ordered liquidation.•确定是否进行了有优惠的或不公平的付款，且可追回此类付款;•调查涉及公司事务的代表、董事、员工或其他人员可能犯下的罪行，并向ASIC报告这些罪行;The Liquidator’s duty is towards all creditors of the company and includes:• Investigate the company’s affairs and report to the creditors;• To assess whether any possible claims may be made against the company’s directors;• To ascertain as to whether any uncommercial transactions have been made and for such transactions to be set aside;• To determine whether any preferential or unfair payments were made and recoverable;• To enquire into possible offences by representatives, directors, employees or other persons who are involved in the company’s affairs and to report such offences to ASIC;• To collect, protect and realise the company’s assets;• To distribute the realised assets of the company to the creditors; and• To apply for the deregistration of the company.注意：如果在清算期间，清算人怀疑有犯罪行为，则清算人应通过ASIC基金进一步调查，或向ASIC报告，以便进行刑事调查。NOTE: If during the course of liquidation, the liquidator suspects offences may have been committed, the liquidator is to either further investigate the matter with ASIC funding or to report to ASIC for criminal investigations to be conducted.
Preferential payments, unfair payments在清算开始前的六个月内如发生下列情形，为所有债权人的共同利益，清算人有能力追讨公司向个别债权人支付的某些款项：2. 比其他债权人提前收到债务(或部分债务)的还款。A liquidator has the ability to recover, for the benefit of all creditors, certain payments made by the company to individual creditors. If during a six-month period prior to the start of liquidation:i. the company is insolvent or that the creditor suspects the company is insolvent, andii. receives payment of their debt (or part of it) ahead of other creditors.认定付款属于不公平或有优惠的标准是，付款必须使债权人处于比其他无担保债权人更有利的地位。In order for these payments to be deemed an unfair and preferential payment, the payment must have placed the creditor in a more favourable position than other unsecured creditors.清算人的清算成本排在资金分配的第一顺位。如果有剩余资金，则支付给有担保债权人、有优先权的无担保债权人(雇员)，最后支付给其他无担保债权人和股东。3. 拖欠的员工休假补偿金（例如，未修完的年休假、病假或长期服务假期津贴）；The liquidator is entitled to the payment of its costs prior to any payments are made to the creditors. If there are funds left over, then payments are made to secured creditors, unsecured creditors with priority (employees), and finally to other unsecured creditors and shareholders.Generally, the order in which funds are distributed is:1. costs and expenses of the liquidation, including liquidators’ fees2. outstanding employee wages and superannuation3. other outstanding employee benefits such as annual leave, sick leave, long service leave,4. employee retrenchment payments,5. unsecured creditors, and在上一个分类中的债权人均已获得偿付后，才能对后一顺序分配资金。如果没有足够的资金全额支付一个类别，那么可用的资金将按比例支付。We note that each category of creditors is to be paid prior to any dividends are made available to the next. If there are insufficient funds to pay a category in full, then the available funds are paid on a pro rata basis.发生债务违约时，有担保债权人的权利与无担保债权人不同。有担保债权人是指，那些对公司部分或全部资产拥有担保权益，以担保公司所欠债务的人。这种担保权益通常是抵押或质押的形式。We note however that the rights of secured creditors differ from those of unsecured creditors when it comes to debt defaults.A secured creditor is someone who has a security interest over some or all of the company’s assets, to secure a debt owed by the company. This security commonly takes the form of a mortgage or charge.公司违反其担保物权项下的义务，有担保债权人有权指定独立的接管人出售部分或全部担保资产，以偿还债务。If a company defaults on its obligations under a security interest, secured creditors have the right to appoint an independent receiver to sell some or all of the charged assets to allow the repayment of the debt.如果接管人已指定且已兑现的金额不能完全清偿债务，则有担保的债权人有权：If a receiver has been appointed and the amount realized cannot fully repay the debt, then a secured creditor is entitled to:•vote at creditors’ meetings for the amount of the shortfall;•participate in any dividend to unsecured creditors on a similar basis.关于债权人类型及其权利的细节将在本文的第2部分中讨论。Specifics in relation to the type of creditors and their rights will be discussed in Part 2 of this article.Conclusion of liquidation将公司的资产全部变现和分配，并向ASIC提交适当的报告后，清算程序及清算人的作用才算结束。The process of liquidation and the role of the liquidator comes to an end after the company’s assets has been fully realised and distribute, with the appropriate reports made to ASIC.在自愿清算中，清算人必须召开最后一次联席会议，并在会议中说明清算的过程，以及公司财产是如何处置的。最后一次会议的通知提交给ASIC后，公司将在三个月后自动注销。在法院下令清算的情况下，不需要召开最后一次会议。一旦清算人决定公司的事务已完全清算，他们可:3. 在没有足够的资产来获得注销公司的法院裁定的情况下,要求ASIC注销公司。In a voluntary liquidation, the liquidator must hold a final joint meeting accounting for how the liquidation has been conducted and how company property has been disposed of. A notice of this final meeting is to be lodged with ASIC and the company will be automatically deregistered after a further three months period.In a court ordered liquidation, this final meeting is not required to be held. Once the liquidator decides that the company’s affairs have been fully wound up, they may:• seek an order for release from the court• seek an order for release and that ASIC deregister the company, or• if there are insufficient assets to obtain a court order for the company’s deregistration, request that ASIC deregister the company.A company ceases to exist after it has been deregistered.以上是关于清算的第一部分。第二部分将重点介绍债权人的类型及其权利。This concludes part 1 of this article. Part 2 will focus on the type of creditors and their rights.
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