New EU rules making it easier for companies to recover claims across borders have been adopted today by EU Ministers.
The new regulation is expected to be be published in the Official Journal (the EU’s Statute book) in June 2014 and will be directly applicable in the Member States (except in the UK and Denmark which have opted out).
The Regulation will provide creditors with a procedure to freeze a debtor’s bank accounts in European Union states (except accounts held in the UK and Denmark w) to prevent the dissipation of assets. This is known as a European Account Preservation Order (EAPO).
EAPO`s will be available to creditors as an alternative to procedures existing under national law. EAPO`s will be of a protective nature, meaning they will only block (freeze) the debtor’s account but not allow money to be paid out to the creditor without a final judgement being issued. EAPO`s are an interim protection procedure and will only apply to cross-border cases. The regulation will provide common rules relating to jurisdiction, conditions and procedure for issuing an order; a disclosure order relating to bank accounts; how it should be enforced by national courts and authorities; and remedies for the debtor and other elements of defendant protection.
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