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The University of Southampton

LAWS6147 Cross-Border Corporate Insolvency and Restructuring

Module Overview

In an age of globalisation, significant trade is carried on across borders with the result that, when businesses collapse or require restructuring (because of financial difficulties or possibly following takeovers and mergers), there will be a multi-jurisdictional problem. The most pressing concern will be how to manage these cross-border dimensions. In recent years, the EU has led the way to resolving these problems with innovative cross-border mechanisms to manage insolvencies and restructuring which have attracted world-wide attention. Further, for decades the UK has pioneered a form of restructuring called a scheme of arrangement which also attracts international attention as a method of addressing corporate insolvencies, in particular. This module will focus on: - The recast EU Insolvency Regulation, currently Regulation 2015/848, as a pre-eminent form of cross-border insolvency regime; - The EU Cross-Border Mergers Directive, currently Directive 2017/1132, as an innovative mechanism for cross-border restructuring within the EU; and - The UK scheme of arrangement under the companies legislation, as an exemplar of a corporate law restructuring mechanism. Many overseas companies have taken advantage of these provisions in recent years.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • The scope, jurisdiction, and application of insolvency framework applicable to cross-border corporate insolvencies governed by EU or Model Law provisions.
  • The framework of cross-border mergers, especially corporate group mergers, effected under the Cross-Border Mergers Directive
  • The UK scheme of arrangement under the companies legislation, its scope, effect and impact on contractual rights.
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Analyse and interpret legal materials, identify key legal principles and issues and, where appropriate, make constructive criticisms and assessment of the main frameworks to manage cross-border restructuring of solvent and insolvent companies, whether through mergers or insolvency proceedings.
  • Develop and present written arguments supported by appropriate evidence
  • Critically evaluate legal materials (legislation, soft law, and cases as appropriate), journal articles, Governmental and non-Governmental reports
  • Communicate effectively knowledge of these cross-border issues and their resolution and present reasoned arguments coherently.
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Analyse complex written texts and evaluate differing arguments.


The syllabus will focus on three significant legal mechanisms for addressing cross-border group restructurings which are of great importance in a globalised trading environment: - The recast EU Insolvency Regulation, currently Regulation 2015/ 848, examining especially the jurisdictional issues which determine the governing jurisdiction and looking in particular at the application of the Regulation to the resolution of cross-border group insolvencies; - The Cross-Border Merger Directive, especially considering jurisdictional issues focusing on the use of the Directive to enable cross-border group restructuring; and - The UK scheme of arrangement under the companies legislation with particular reference to the flexible restructuring which is possible by virtue of the binding effect of a scheme of arrangement which can trump contractual rights.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

- 2 hour weekly seminars, with opportunities for individual student presentations on a rota basis which will help you develop your presentation skills. You will receive feedback on your presentation. Learning activities include: - Directed and additional reading, as per distributed reading lists reproduced on Blackboard; - Engagement with media business reports so that you can relate the materials being discussed to contemporary controversies.

Independent Study130
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list


Payne (2014). Schemes of Arrangement: Theory, Structure and Operation. 

Moss, Fletcher and Isaacs (2016). The EU Regulation on Insolvency Proceedings 3rd ed (2016). 



Class discussions


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (2 hours) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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