FOREIGN COMPANIES IN CURACAO BANKRUPTCY PROCEEDINGS

Principle of universality

In Curaçao, bankruptcy in general serves the purpose of liquidating assets of a particular person or legal entity and distributing the proceeds among the combined creditors. Under Curaçao insolvency law, the Curaçao courts have jurisdiction in respect of insolvency proceedings against legal entities that have their corporate seat in Curaçao and against any legal entity that carries on business or professional activities through an office in Curaçao. A foreign party can therefore be declared insolvent in Curaçao if it has a branch office in this jurisdiction. Whether or not a concurrent insolvency proceeding against that foreign party …
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16
Jun 2016
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Legal

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CONSOLIDATED BANKRUPTCY

Creditors, stay alert!

Aruba, Curaçao, St. Maarten and the BES-islands (Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba) will together be referred to as the Dutch Caribbean, although each has its own set of laws.

Bankruptcy in general serves the purpose of liquidating assets of a particular person or legal entity and distributing the proceeds among the combined creditors. Sometimes, several companies belonging to one and the same group of companies go bankrupt. In principle, the trustee in bankruptcy has to administer and liquidate the assets of each of the bankrupt estates individually.

When multiple companies of the same group go bankrupt, it …
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01
Feb 2016
CATEGORY

Legal

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LIABILITY OF COMPANY DIRECTORS

No derivative suit

It is considered a general rule of Dutch Caribbean corporate law that the management board (a.k.a. board of directors) must act in the best interests of the company (an NV or BV) in the performance of its duties, even when acting on instructions from others (e.g. shareholders). This includes the interests of the shareholders, the employees and, according to most legal writers, the creditors of the company.

Under the Civil Codes of Curacao, St. Maarten and the BES-islands (Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba), directors of a limited liability company (naamloze vennootschap or besloten vennootschap) are personally and …
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18
Nov 2015
CATEGORY

Corporate

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LIABILITY OF A TRUST DIRECTOR

No lighter liability system

The National Ordinance on the supervision of Trust Service Providers (Landsverordening toezicht trustwezen) does not provide anything with regard to the liability of trust offices (a.k.a. management services companies) or their representatives acting as a director under the Articles (of Association) of a legal entity (for instance a company limited by shares (‘NV‘), private company with limited liability (‘BV‘) or foundation). The question is whether this liability is governed by the usual rules in this area. Because the trust office as a director of a legal entity usually fulfills a different role from a director – …
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28
Mar 2015
CATEGORY

Corporate

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US LAW GOVERNED AGREEMENTS

Curaçao and St. Maarten Courts will accept the choice of laws

One of the questions frequently asked is whether the Courts in Curaçao or St. Maarten, if an action is brought before them, will pay deference to a “choice of governing law” and/or venue provision in an agreement, in particular when the parties have chosen US Law, and a US Court to resolve their disputes.

The choice of the laws of (a particular State of) the United States of America as the laws governing an agreement is valid and binding under the laws of Curaçao/St. Maarten, and will therefore be …
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21
Nov 2013
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Legal

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INSOLVENCY AND LIABILITY

Not (or late) filing for bankruptcy

In Curaçao, there is no statutory obligation for managing directors of a company to file for the bankruptcy of the corporation. Therefore, managing directors are not responsible to the creditors for damages sustained by them as a result of any ‘late’ filing for bankruptcy. There is no such obligation for shareholders of a corporation either.

However, creditors of the corporation may hold a director liable on the basis of tort if he entered into a transaction on behalf of the corporation while he knew, or should reasonably have known, that the corporation would not …
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13
Sep 2013
CATEGORY

Corporate

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THIS BLOG IS ARCHIVED BY THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

Blogs of today can be studied for years to come

I’m thrilled to learn from Robert Ambrogi’s blog that “Karel’s Legal Blog” has been archived in the Library of Congress:

On the Internet there is no rule against perpetuities. To the contrary our perpetuation seems assured. Latest case in point: the new Legal Blawgs Web Archive from the Library of Congress. Yes, just as the LOC is archiving all of our tweets, turns out it is also archiving a selection of legal blog posts, and has been doing so since March 1, 2007. (…)

The LOC describes …
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17
Jul 2013
CATEGORY

Various

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LITIGATION IS A SKILLED PROFESSION (part 8)

New legislation

Finally, note that rather simple examples have been taken here. However, many suits are complicated with regard to their subject matter. In this connection disputes about complicated take-over issues, disputes between investors and an investment fund, disputes with a contractor or architect about a building or disputes about intellectual property come to mind. All these types of dispute require from advocates much more knowledge of and experience with litigation. It is not that each advocate must be an expert in all those areas but he should at least have experts in his team.

Only a few aspects of …
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14
Jun 2013
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Legal

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LITIGATION IS A SKILLED PROFESSION (part 7)

Injunctive relief

Apart from seizures it is also possible to consider an application for interim injunctive relief (voorlopige voorziening). The Judge for Interim Relief can render so-called provisional relief, for instance order a building freeze or order the counterparty to pay an advance on the compensation. Such a provision is called provisional because it is a measure in the interests of maintaining order to which the court dealing with the principal case is not bound. So it may well be the case that the provisional judgment of the Judge for Interim Relief differs fundamentally from the judgment of the court …
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07
Jun 2013
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Legal

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LITIGATION IS A SKILLED PROFESSION (part 6)

Proceedings in various jurisdictions

Sometimes cases which are strongly interrelated to each other are brought before different courts. For instance you instigate proceedings with the court in Curacao and your counterparty instigates proceedings at the same time against you before the court in Aruba or in Sint Maarten. If the merits of the case involve the same dispute it would hardly be efficient if litigation would take place before two different courts. In that case there would also be a risk that contradictory judgments would be delivered. The Code of Civil Procedure provides for an arrangement with regard to referral …
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31
May 2013
CATEGORY

Legal

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LITIGATION IS A SKILLED PROFESSION (part 5)

Duty to submit exhibits

It can of course happen that it is not a plaintiff but the defendant or a third party who has the documents by which the plaintiff can prove the existence and extent of his claim. There is a separate procedure by which such documents can be demanded. This procedure, better known as the duty to submit exhibits of Section 843a of the Code of Civil Procedure requires several conditions which must be satisfied before the court can allow that claim (exhibitieplicht).

Many other issues can play a role. I will mention a few. Say that you …
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24
May 2013
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Legal

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LITIGATION IS A SKILLED PROFESSION (part 4)

Statement of Defense

As the defending party you have to put up a defense (Statement of Defense) and in this regard this statement should not only be clear and complete but you should also know for instance what formal defenses you should advance. With regard to the latter for instance the plea of limitation of action comes to mind. In many cases the period of limitation of action (verjaring) is five years but sometimes it is a much shorter period. The short period of limitation of six months applies to the annulment of a resolution of a legal entity registered …
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17
May 2013
CATEGORY

Legal

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