The Executive approves that the Tax Agency and Social Security alleviate the debt of those covered by the second chance law but not companies
The Social Security and the Tax agency will be able to participate for the first time in the debt restructuring of individuals and the self-employed in a situation of insolvency, but in a limited way. The discounts that they can accept, thus, will be limited to a maximum of 1,000 euros for each of the two organisms. The change constitutes the main novelty of the bankruptcy law reform that the Council of Ministers has sent this Tuesday to Parliament for its final approval, but it does not satisfy the demands of the institutions that have spent years demanding that the State contribute by means of withdrawals to refloat viable companies in trouble.
The Minister of Justice, Pilar Llop, has justified these limitations by the particularities of the Spanish economy. “We believe that it may be justified (to exonerate public creditors from contributing to a greater extent) by the system that exists in our country of Social Security. For example, the most of the pensions They are not private plans, but public, unlike what happens in other countries that have this effect on public credit. Therefore, we have understood that the impact on public credit has to be done, but it has been quantitatively limited“, has argued.
Llop, however, has left the open door that the parliamentary groups modify it in Congress and the Senate, with which the Government seems to have left a certain margin of action to convince its partners to approve the reform. “You still have to go to parliamentary procedure and we don’t know what will happen. But we are convinced that we have made a good and correct transposition of the directive (European of 2019 on which the new law is based), “he defended against criticism of having betrayed the spirit of that community regulation.
The new rule establishes that the “Natural person debtor, whether or not an employer” may request the “exoneration of unsatisfied liabilities” (your unpaid debts) “provided it is a debtor in good faith” (That is, you have not stopped paying voluntarily, you have tried to negotiate with creditors and you have not committed any economic crime). Within these deductions, those of the debts that have contracted with the Social Security and Treasury are included up to 1,000 euros, respectively, but “only in the first exoneration of the unsatisfied liability, not being exonerable any amount in the successive exemptions that the same debtor could obtain “.
Clamor of years
The request that public creditors of viable companies in trouble be involved in their refloating has been a clamor in recent years, with protagonists as prominent as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the OECD, the European Commission or the Bank of Spain. Without going any further, employers and unions, through the Economic and social Council, they already spoke recently in the same direction in their opinion on the preliminary draft of the legal reform, which did not include that the Treasury and Social Security could accept deductions in any case.
Said opinion warned that in tenders, and especially when it comes to SMEs, the main creditor is usually the public administration, fundamentally the Tax Agency and Social Security, but also the autonomous communities, large municipalities and provincial councils.
“The current system in Spain grants a privileged treatment to public credit that allows public creditors, once the bankruptcy has been requested, to execute loans outside the bankruptcy procedure, through singular executions, a practice that in many cases frustrates the possibility of avoiding the liquidation of the company. This behavior, in addition, in many cases makes it impossible to collect the bankruptcy debt, which directly affects other creditors, seriously damaging their assets and leading companies and the self-employed, in many cases, to insolvency due to non-payment of their bankrupt debtors. “, they criticized.