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This subject involves a detailed study of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth) (PPSA). The PPSA is one of the most significant commercial law reforms to have been enacted in Australia. Based partly on the Canadian provincial PPSAs and Article 9 of the United States Uniform Commercial Code, the PPSA deals with the taking of security interests in personal property (goods, accounts receivable, intellectual property and the like) and it governs every aspect of the transaction including the formalities surrounding entry into a security agreement, registration of security interests, priorities between competing security interests in the same collateral and enforcement of security interests. The PPSA replaces the registration of charges provisions in the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), the state and territory bills of sale statutes and the state and territory statutes governing registration of security interests in motor vehicles. It also substantially reforms the law relating to floating charges and the law relating to reservation of title agreements. The PPSA was subject to a major review which was completed in early 2015 and the government is currently considering amendments to implement the review’s recommendations. The subject will include a systematic study of the review’s main recommendations. It will also include study of the Australian PPSA cases decided to date, along with leading Canadian and New Zealand PPSA cases, to the extent that they are relevant in the Australian context.
Principal topics include:
- Aims and objectives of the PPSA
- Scope of the PPSA
- Validity, enforceability and attachment of security interests
- Perfection of security interests and the consequences of non-perfection
- Registration of security interests
- Competing claims to collateral: the basic PPSA priority rules, purchase-money security interests and buyers in the ordinary course of business
- The secured party’s claim to collateral proceeds
- Secured creditors’ remedies.
Intended learning outcomes
A student who has successfully completed this subject will:
- Have an advanced and integrated understanding of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth) (PPSA) and also of case law developments and proposals for amendments in the PPSA Statutory Review and elsewhere
- Be able to critically examine, analyse, interpret and assess the effectiveness of the PPSA
- Be an engaged participant in debate regarding emerging and contemporary issues in the field, such as the application of the statute to transactions that are functionally equivalent to security interests, the treatment of leases and other title retention arrangements, the scope and operation of the PPS register, the interaction between the PPSA and the insolvency laws and consumer protection issues arising in the PPSA context
- Have a sophisticated appreciation of the factors and processes driving parliamentary revision of the PPSA
- Have an advanced understanding of situations which might give rise to litigation under the statute
- Have the cognitive and technical skills to generate critical and creative ideas relating to secured lending theory and practice and to critically evaluate existing legal theories, principles and concepts with creativity and autonomy
- Have the cognitive and technical skills to independently examine, research and analyse existing and emerging legal issues relating to secured lending law
- Have the communication skills to clearly articulate and convey complex information regarding the PPSA to relevant specialist and non-specialist audiences
- Be able to demonstrate autonomy, expert judgment and responsibility as a practitioner and learner in the field of secured lending law.
Last updated: 11 February 2021