One stop for bankruptcies

(UPPER LEFT) Judge of the High Commercial Court Mario Vukelic introduced his idea six year ago - creation of a web page which would contain all information on bankruptcy procedures including the assets which are offered for sale. It is only typical for Croatia that this idea should not be realized for six whole years, although it is not a large sum of money that is required and it would not be realized even now if it weren't for international donations collected by Drazen Komarica from Judge's Web.

manager_hr_07022006.jpg(UPPER RIGHT) JUDGE MARIO VUKELIC is one of judicial pioneers in informatization. He also created the web page of the High Commercial Court, but with praises there were also questions why is he as a judge dealing in IT in the first place. In the design of software intended for courts, the key role, along with IT experts, must belong to judges themselves because they have the best knowledge of the problems which the courts are facing - he says. He is also involved in the project of integrated case management system which should create a revolution in court case management in Croatia. He also participates in World Bank projects, European Council Commission for the Efficiency of Justice and is a member of the International Insolvency Institute.

(MIDDLE OF THE PAGE) Publishing of judicial practice is one of the cornerstones of legal security

One stop for bankruptcies - JUDICIAL PRACTICE Six years from the idea to the realization of the program

Judge Vukelic is the author and editor of the web page where a lot of information on bankruptcy procedures, bankruptcy trustees as well as information on property and equipment offered for sale can be found.

70 public notices

There are already 70 public notices posted on the web from all over Croatia. Among them, for instance, the sale of land owned by Agan Kamen from Split, which will be performed by the end of February.
-The web enables a complete review of the assets sold in all bankruptcy procedures in Croatia, all in one place as a one-stop web shop. This should result in better sales and thus better satisfaction of creditors - says judge Vukelic.
He adds that buyers can immediately, and free of charge, check data on the assets offered because each notice is linked to the land registry, cadastre, court registry and court database on bankruptcy trustees and the proceeding court.
-Together with the public notices, we wish to publish a number of additional documents such as: excerpts from land registry and cadastre, drawings, photographs, value estimate of assets, court expert reports, etc - explains our collocutor, pointing out that the posting of a public notice is free of charge.
Creditors, who have often doubted their bankruptcy trustees, would soon be able to select a trustee from the list containing not only names, but also any information a trustee alone would provide, from education to managing bankruptcy procedures. According to the new Bankruptcy Act, bankruptcy trustees are selected by the bankruptcy judge, but the creditors' assembly may, although this is rarely done, select somebody else, even someone who is not on the list.

Complete review

At the web page, which can be located on the Judge's Web site, a complete systemized review of the judicial practice of the High Commercial Court relating to bankruptcy procedures from 1994 until today can be found.
- Publishing judicial practice on the internet is one of the cornerstones of legal security because it provides information on how particular legal issues have been adjudicated in other cases - points out Vukelic.
Part of this web page is already being translated into English and there are plans to cooperate with experts from the International Insolvency Institute, World Bank and other bankruptcy-related institutions.

Quarrels over achieved prices

Many objections, sometimes justified, have been made concerning the procedure of selling the bankruptcy estate. Thereat the pattern is almost typical: for the seller and its creditors the realized purchase price is too low, and for the buyer too high. The difference between the estimated value and the price realized by sale is often a point of dispute between the creditors and the bankruptcy trustee. The achieved price may be higher, which is rare, or lower, which is unfortunately more common, than the estimated value. This is the reason why creditors sometimes doubt the regularity of the sale. Regardless of all the property value evaluation methods: accounting, financial, mathematic, dynamic or other, the market value of any property is the price
which was realized by selling that property on the market, and it is not determined by the Bankruptcy Act, but by the law of supply and demand - says judge Vukelic., 07.02.2007.
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