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Public credit in the special procedure for microenterprises

The special procedure for microenterprises was one of the main novelties of Law 16/2022, of September 5, reforming the consolidated text of the Bankruptcy Law, with the aim of seeking maximum procedural simplification and reduction of costs in the processing of a bankruptcy procedure .

This is the mechanism applicable in situations of insolvency of natural or legal persons who carry out a business or professional activity with a small size (less than ten employees and an annual turnover of less than 700,000 euros or a liability of less than 350,000 euros). , distinguishing two possibilities:

  1. Continuation procedure.

  2. Liquidation procedure with or without transfer of the company in operation. In the event that at least 85% of the credits correspond to public creditors, the special procedure can only be processed as a liquidation procedure.

Without prejudice to the fact that the insolvency situation may be caused by other causes, once three months of non-payment of tax obligations, Social Security or labor obligations have passed, the debtor must request the opening of this special procedure within the period of one month. If the procedure is not requested within said period, the reductions and waits that result from the approval of the continuation plan will not affect the tax and social security credits.

The request to open the special continuation procedure will be made using the corresponding standardized form at the electronic judicial headquarters or at the notaries or commercial registry offices or chambers of commerce and must be communicated by the debtor to the Tax Agency and the General Treasury of Social Security within 72 hours. If you fail to comply with this communication obligation, the credits of the Tax and Social Security Agency will be excluded from the reductions and waits that result from the approval of the continuation plan.

In the case of public credits, the opening of the special procedure will not suspend the execution of credits that are classified as privileged, unless the debtor requests it with respect to assets and rights necessary for the continuity of the business or professional activity and so agreed by the judge. If it is agreed, the suspension will be maintained until it is proven that a continuation plan will not be approved, and, in any case, for a maximum of 3 months from the decree in which the request is considered made.

  1. Within the continuation procedure , a continuation plan must be prepared, which will be communicated electronically to the creditors, who will vote on its approval using the standardized form. The plan will be considered approved when all classes of credits vote in this regard, or if some class has approved it, provided that in the latter case compliance with certain additional requirements is proven. For it to be understood that a class of affected credits votes in favor of the approval of the plan, it is necessary that the majority of the liabilities corresponding to that class have voted in favor (two-thirds in the class of credits with real guarantee). It will be understood that the Tax Agency has voted in favor of the continuation plan if it contains a reduction of up to 15% of the amount of ordinary credits, unless a vote is cast against.

    There are certain credits that cannot be affected by the plan, such as food credits, non-contractual civil liability credits, labor credits that do not belong to senior management personnel and privileged public credit.

    For public law credits, the plan cannot involve a change in the applicable law, a change in debtor, the modification or extinction of guarantees or the conversion of the credit into shares or social participations, into a participatory credit or loan or into an instrument of characteristics or rank different from those of the original, but may contemplate reductions in ordinary and subordinate credits.

    Once the plan is approved, the debtor or creditors holding affected credits may request judicial approval of the plan. The judge will approve the plan if it ensures the viability of the company, the insolvency and procedural requirements are met, the required majorities are met, equal treatment is given to credits of the same type, the best interest of creditors (compared to a hypothetical liquidation of the microenterprise), and the debtor is up to date with the payment of tax and Social Security debts accrued after the request to open the special continuation procedure.

  2. If the plan is not approved, its approval by the judge is rejected, its challenge is upheld or it is breached, the special liquidation procedure is opened. It will also determine the opening of the special liquidation procedure, in any case, if the debtor is not up to date with compliance with tax or Social Security obligations, provided that its accrual is subsequent to the order opening the special procedure.

    In the special liquidation procedure, the debtor must indicate its willingness to liquidate the asset or, on the contrary, request the appointment of a bankruptcy administrator, presenting the corresponding liquidation plan.

    The liquidation of individual goods or generic categories of goods will occur through an electronic platform system, and additionally through a specialized entity, unless duly justified according to objective criteria.

    The execution of settlement operations may not last more than three months, extendable for an additional month, with monthly settlement reports being prepared.