Holding meetings wholly using virtual technology

This month, ARITA sought clarification from ASIC and Treasury on a significant matter that has been a source of concern to many of our members – whether it is possible for a meeting convened by a liquidator or voluntary administrator to be held by wholly virtual means.

In ARITA’s view, new s 75-75 of the Insolvency Practice Rules, which commenced on 23 December 2020, left some doubt about this issue, despite the purported intention of that provision to permit meetings to be held by wholly virtual means – that is, without the need for there to still be an option for creditors to attend a meeting in person if they so wished.

Resolution of this issue was of fundamental importance to our members – indeed, a meeting which is convened or conducted in an irregular manner may have the consequence that both the meeting, and acts performed by an external administrator, are invalid, and this may also expose an external administrator to personal liability in some cases.

In a notice to Registered Liquidators issued on 20 August 2021, ASIC has confirmed that it regards s 75-75 to permit meetings to be held wholly by virtual means, and that it will administer the law on that basis.

We are pleased to have secured ASIC’s written confirmation of its approach to this matter, and we hope it provides a source of certainty and comfort for our members.