Statutory review of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009
On 4 April 2014, the Attorney-General announced a review of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (PPS Act) as required by section 343 of the PPS Act.
The PPS Act was an important commercial reform, creating a single national regime for secured finance using personal property. Secured lending against personal property is an important element of the Australian credit market and the broader economy.
The PPS Act replaced a complex and fragmented legal system, including more than 70 Commonwealth, state and territory statutes and general law rules. The Act established a single national regime for the creation, registration, priority and enforcement of security interests in personal property to which it applies.
After more than two years of operation, the review of the Act provided an opportunity to consider, based on practical experience, whether the Act has achieved its objectives.
Mr Bruce Whittaker
Mr Bruce Whittaker conducted the review. Mr Whittaker specialises in debt capital markets, acquisition and leveraged finance, project finance, asset finance and leasing, and banking. Mr Whittaker has more than 30 years' experience in private practice both in Australia and overseas; and is recognised as one of the world's leading structured finance lawyers.
In addition to reviewing the operation of the Act, the review paid particular attention to the experiences of small businesses. As outlined in the review's terms of reference, feedback was sought on issues such as the impact of the Act on small business, the level of understanding of the Act amongst small business operators and their ability to effectively utilise the Act for their benefit.
An interim report on priority issues raised by small business in the review was delivered to the Attorney-General and Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister on 31 July 2014. The final report on the review was tabled before Parliament on 18 March 2015.
Terms of reference
The Statutory review of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 is governed by the terms of reference issued by the Attorney-General.
Call for submissions
Following the Attorney-General's announcement of the review, submissions were sought from interested organisations and individuals on the operation of the PPS Act and the matters set out in paragraphs a) to i) of the terms of reference. The closing date for submissions on issues particular to small business was 6 June 2014 with submissions on all other issues accepted until 25 July 2014.
Consultation papers and related submissions
The following 4 consultation papers were foreshadowed in the Interim Report on the Review of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 published 31 July 2014.
The papers were released addressing issues raised during the initial call for submissions, and were progressively released for stakeholder feedback and comment. Copies of the consultation papers and submissions received in response are available.