PPSA Happy Anniversary

This week marked the first birthday of the operational commencement of the PPSA and its Register. To celebrate, BILS is organising a major two-day conference, Personal Property Security Law: Local and Global Perspectives, on 20-21 February 2013 at the Adelaide Festival Centre.

For online registration and programme details:

 Leading international and national experts will be on hand, and special sessions will cover insolvency, and also financial property and payments. The Keynote Address by the pre-eminent commercial lawyer, Sir Roy Goode CBE QC, will examine another aspect of the PPSA now relevant to Australia, the Cape Town Convention on Security in Mobile Goods, including the Aircraft Protocol. This was signed into law in Australia before Christmas.

There are ‘Fringe Benefits’ of Adelaide in February, with the Fringe Festival and outdoor night events , and the added bonus this year of the Turner at the Tate exhibition at the Art Gallery of SA. The conference dinner is at the University’s award-winning National Wine Centre, and is included in the modest registration fee.

This time last year, we wrote positively about the brave new PPS world that lay before us, notwithstanding some teething problems. Migration issues dogged the Register and distracted secured party users through 2012, but happily these are mostly in the past. Unnecessary fishhooks remain in the registration requirements and process, and looking forward to the statutory Government review due by 2015, these and other matters should be addressed, partly by looking to experience in other jurisdictions. The conference will include a panel discussion focusing on Review issues.

However, ITSA reports this week that there have been almost 6 million searches and 2.6 million new registrations (in addition to the 4.8 million migrated ones) recorded since commencement. In the lead-up to this time next year, when the transitional ‘grace’ period ends, there should be a steady increase in new registrations. So the PPSA world is here to stay.

To date, only two cases (Hastie (No.3), and re Barclays Bank) touching or concerning the PPSA have been reported in Australia, both interestingly in an insolvency context. There are issues being debated and advised upon across the country, so no doubt the stream of litigation will slowly increase this year. The number of registrations and searches gives a clearer indication of the impact of this legislation on the financial and credit world.

Australia’s PPSA is not the first, nor the last, and so the conference also examines the regional and global context of secured transactions, with speakers from three continents.

We invite you to join us here in Adelaide on 20-21 February.

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