Portugal: Harmonização dos Regimes de Recuperação / Insolvência

Last Updated: 10 November 2017
Article by Pedro Faria and Paula Lopes Correia

Most Read Contributor in Portugal, October 2017

A crise económica que assolou a Europa no fim da década passada, levou a que um elevado número de particulares e empresas sucumbissem a processos de matriz falimentar, processos esses que, atentos os princípios da livre circulação de pessoas e de capitais que regem a União Europeia, assumem, cada vez mais, um cariz transfronteiriço, com credores e devedores oriundos de diversas geografias.

Apesar dos esforços envidados no sentido de serem adotadas políticas comuns que pusessem cobro às diversas causas que contribuíram para a crise económica, o certo é que a composição do quadro legislativo dos processos de recuperação e falimentar foi sendo deixada à discricionariedade de cada um dos Estados Membros.

Esta realidade parece estar, agora, a mudar e prova disso encontra-se na Proposta de Diretiva do Parlamento Europeu que pretende alterar a Diretiva 2012/30/EU. Como se pode ler, tanto na Exposição de Motivos, como nos Considerandos desta Proposta, as Instituições Europeias pretendem adotar um conjunto de princípios-chave que permitirão a harmonização dos regimes de recuperação / insolvência e a eliminação das assimetrias existentes.

A Proposta de Diretiva encontra-se estruturada em três partes essenciais, a saber:

  • Títulos I, IV e V: definição de princípios e diretrizes, de cariz transversal, a serem aplicados aos processos de recuperação;
  • Título II: enunciação do regime jurídico para a denominada "reestruturação preventiva";
  • Título III: determinação do regime jurídico de "segunda oportunidade" para empresários.

No Título I da Proposta, o legislador procedeu à (i) enunciação das matérias que serão alvo de regulamentação pela Diretiva, (ii) à definição de um conjunto de conceitos transversais às normas da Diretiva e (iii) à implementação de um mecanismo de "Early Warning" que visa a deteção precoce de situações de deterioração financeira de pessoas singulares ou coletivas que exerçam uma atividade empresarial ou comercial. Por sua vez, os Títulos IV e V da Proposta, estão orientados para a determinação de um conjunto de medidas que visam incrementar a eficiência dos processos de reestruturação preventiva e de insolvência: por um lado, pretende-se que os Estados Membros ("EM") incentivem os players destes processos a apostar na sua formação, por outro, determina-se a prescrição de um conjunto de normas mínimas de conduta a serem adotadas por estes profissionais.

Ainda nos Títulos IV e V da Proposta, destaca-se o incentivo à utilização de meios informáticos no contexto dos processos de reestruturação preventiva e de insolvência e a recolha de dados tendo em vista a obtenção de estatísticas fiáveis sobre os processos de reestruturação e insolvência.

O Título II da Proposta regula os denominados "quadros jurídicos em matéria de reestruturação preventiva" e, nos seus artigos 4.º a 18.º, encontramos o universo de normas que pautam o acesso por devedores com dificuldades financeiras, pessoas singulares ou coletivas, a processos de reestruturação que lhes permitam a negociação de planos de reestruturação suscetíveis de evitar o recurso ao processo de insolvência.

Apesar de muitos dos caminhos apontados pelo legislador comunitário se encontrarem já consagrados na legislação nacional sobre reestruturação e insolvência, existem algumas novidades que merecem destaque.

Desde logo, o facto de o devedor poder ver o período de renegociação da sua dívida alargado dos 3 meses previstos no CIRE para 1 ano (cfr. artigo 6.º, n.º 7 da Proposta). Para além disso, também as maiorias necessárias para aprovação do plano de reestruturação podem vir a sofrer um agravamento, dado referir-se que o legislador nacional poderá exigir o voto favorável de até 75% do montante dos créditos de cada categoria (cfr. artigo 9.º, n.º 4 da Proposta). Já os artigos seguintes, de novo de um modo inovador, enunciam situações em que, apesar de o Plano de Recuperação não ter reunido o consenso necessário, pode ainda assim vir a ser aprovado, mediante confirmação da autoridade judicial ou administrativa competente (cfr. artigo 11.º da Proposta), sendo de destacar ainda a não vinculatividade do plano para aqueles credores que não tenham participado nas negociações (cfr. artigo 14.º, n.º 2 da Proposta).

Um último destaque merece o Título III da Proposta, reservado às questões respeitantes à "concessão de uma segunda oportunidade aos empresários". Este título, que tem início com um princípio geral que obriga os EM a assegurarem aos empresários sobre-endividados o acesso a situações de perdão total de dívida (cfr. artigo 19.º), estipula logo no artigo 20.º que esse perdão seja concedido no prazo máximo de 3 anos a contar (i) da data em que se encetou a liquidação dos bens do empresário (ii) ou da data em que seu deu o início da execução do plano de reembolsos.

De salientar ainda, por fim, o teor do artigo 23.º, através do qual se permite que dívidas oriundas da atividade comercial e dívidas pessoais do mesmo empresário sejam tratadas num único processo e, desse modo, possam ser alvo do perdão previsto no referido artigo 20.º.

Em jeito de conclusão, dir-se-á que esta Proposta de Diretiva não encerrará uma revolução na legislação portuguesa sobre recuperação e insolvência, a qual se encontra, há já vários anos, vocacionada para a recuperação dos devedores.

Não obstante, a verdade é que a mesma deixa uma ampla margem de discricionariedade aos legisladores nacionais, a qual, no caso português, poderá dar azo a pequenas revoluções em matérias como sejam a das maiorias necessárias para a aprovação dos planos, ou, ainda, a das condições necessárias para a atribuição de perdões de dívida.

Em face deste cenário, a preocupação dos credores deverá ser orientada não tanto para o legislador comunitário, mas antes para o legislador nacional, que poderá vir a ter nas suas mãos, ao que tudo indica, o poder de transpor este regime de forma a acentuar o tom já assumidamente pró-reestruturação existente na legislação em vigor.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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