On November 28, 2018, the Franco-Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry hosted a business breakfast of Coface and KAMS companies, dedicated to the debt collection procedure. The meeting was moderated by Seymour Balammadov, partner and lawyer of the KAMS law firm.
Yuriy Sidorenko, a lawyer and advisor to KAMS, gave a classification of court debt collection scenarios and typical mistakes in claim work. He noted that usually plaintiffs use a general-legal proceeding scenario, in which there is a high likelihood of delaying the trial and, as a result, increasing costs. At the same time, many scenarios allow you to minimize time and financial costs and increase the efficiency of legal proceedings.
As one of the most efficient and cost-effective scenarios in terms of time and money, Yuri identified practice in order production. This is a summary procedure, in which the court receives expanded powers and access to more information. However, this practice is still underutilized by the courts.
As for the typical mistakes that complicate the work of the judicial authorities, the most common are the vagueness and complexity of the requirements put forward, as well as the lack of the necessary documentation in full and in the proper form.
Separately, the speaker noted that now state bodies oblige lawyers and advocates to collect more and more information about their counterparties and potentially report to the authorities.
Ivan Chugunov, a lawyer at KAMS, reviewed the practice of bringing to bankruptcy, methods of its initiation and the advantages of bringing a debtor to bankruptcy. He spoke about the practice of “piercing the corporate veil”, which implies bringing the debtor’s management (directors, owners, chief accountants, chief lawyers, etc.) to subsidiary liability as an exclusive debt collection mechanism. As an illustrative example, Ivan cited the case of the Dalnyaya Steppe.
Olga Sharkova, Director of the Underwriting and Risk Department at Coface Russia, devoted her presentation to the principles of receivables management and minimizing credit risks. Olga also presented an overview of the risks faced by creditor companies in the Russian market. These include, for example, difficulties in assessing the solvency of partners, the practice of providing long deferrals for large amounts of not fully understood counterparties, a chain of non-payments, fraud and others.
In addition, Olga urged to pay attention to negative signals indicating the possible insolvency of debtors: the presence of bankruptcy in the past, frequent change of the head, high debt burden, high share of loans in foreign currency, non-provision or partial provision of information, etc.
In conclusion, Olga gave 8 tips for the CFO: make inquiries about a potential client, always conclude an agreement, do not rush to increase credit limits, know your customers, save all delivery documents, monitor payment behavior, remind clients of debt, but do it politely. and protect your cash flow with credit insurance.
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