Forensic, Insolvency & Turnaround practitioners
Providing 1 to 1 trusted specialist support for those in business distress.
We are committed professionals dedicated to providing quality advice and guidance in the fields of Forensic Accounting, Insolvency and Turnaround Management (F.I.T.).
Our promise is solving tight and complex situations. We will ensure that you and your clients receive first class service with the objective of bringing a commercial solution to those in financial distress.
Condon Associates is a member of the Condon Advisory Group with a committed group of professionals dedicated to the provision of quality advice and guidance in the fields of Forensic Accounting, Insolvency and Turnaround Management (FIT).
Condon Associates offers its clients the benefit of more than 140 years cumulative experience involved in business rescue, dissolution, insolvency, turnaround management, forensic accounting, special investigations and valuations.
We will focus on turning them around and chartering them on a safe course for their future, whether it’s by guiding them in the right direction, or forensically analysing their situation.
When a constructive alternative cannot be found, rest assured that they will be supported through the difficult times and relaunched.
There are of course occasions in this profession where it is necessary to deal with difficult circumstances. You can therefore be confident that we will seek to get the situation under control as quickly as possible, ensuring that all assets are located, and protected for the benefit of those who rightly deserve them.
We look forward to assisting your clients in any of our key professional service areas.
Forensic Accounting is the process of analysing, interpreting, summarising and ultimately presenting complex financial and business related issues primarily to Courts, but also to business owners and other stakeholders. This specialised service is required when irregularities arise without explanation or records are incomplete and require reconstructing.
We have a number of tools to interrogate data, including access to sophisticated forensic accounting and IT services.
At Condon Associates our Forensic focus is in three key areas:
- Fraud investigation, detection, assessment and control.
- Economic loss quantification and valuations, including business interruption & loss.
- Analytical and administrative assistance including family law, probate, and commercial and minority shareholder actions.
Fraud assessment and investigations
We provide assistance on all issues of fraud control and prevention, including the preparation of briefs, which are the Firm’s forte. Our staff are experienced in dealing with criminal matters and in compiling the vast array of financial evidence that often accompanies a fraud investigation. Condon Associates can also assist in determining whether or not the evidence provided is sufficient for a civil or criminal case.
Family law matters
The Family Court has broad jurisdiction to make orders with respect to property disputes and the payment of maintenance in matrimonial disputes, it also extends to the making of orders against third parties.
We provide assistance in identifying and valuing property, as well as untangling the sometimes complex arrangements that may accompany a family’s financial affairs. The Firm can also assist in the preparation of projected income and maintenance requirements between the parties. At Condon Associates we approach family law matters with professional independence and objectivity.
We offer expertise in providing specific financial advice in relation to the management and distribution of deceased estates, and claims made by applicants under the Family Provision Act 1982 (NSW).
Whether there are valuation issues in dispute, or your clients need assistance in retracing the financial history of the deceased estate, Condon Associates is in a position to produce this information in a manner that is both easy to understand and persuasive.
Commercial disputes and minority shareholder actions
The Australian Corporations Act provides relief to minority shareholders and imposes various statutory duties upon directors of companies. The court may make orders for the purchase of shares, or order that a company be wound up. Condon Associates can provide assistance in these matters relating to valuations, as well as reviewing and presenting evidence to support a litigant’s case.
The method of presentation will comply with the requirements of applicable rules of evidence in the jurisdiction in which the dispute is expected to be litigated.
We are also ideally placed to provide assistance in disputes involving partnerships or any other form of complex dispute.
Economic loss quantification and valuations
Condon Associates can provide professional and legally admissible estimates of economic loss for personal injury matters, business interruption claims and opportunity cost issues.
The firm's commitment to you
Condon Associates will provide a confidential assessment of your problematic situation, and immediately formulate and communicate a conceptual approach to managing your matter.
Providing consistent and reliable professional service within our areas of expertise is what we do best here at Condon Associates.
If a company is in financial difficulty, its shareholders, creditors or the court can put the company into liquidation. The purpose of liquidation of an insolvent company is to have an independent and suitably qualified person (the liquidator) take control of the company so that its affairs can be wound up in an orderly and fair way for the benefit of all creditors.
When a company is being liquidated because it is insolvent, the liquidator has a duty to all of the company’s creditors.
The liquidator’s role is to:
- collect, protect and realise the company’s assets;
- investigate and report to creditors the company’s affairs, including any unfair preferences which may be recoverable, any non commercial transactions which may be set aside, and any possible claims against the company’s officers;
- enquire into the failure of the company and possible offences by people involved with the company and report to ASIC;
- after paying the costs of the liquidation, distribute the proceeds of realisation – first to priority creditors, including employees, then to unsecured creditors, and then obtain independent legal advice on the merits of the liquidator’s claim before repaying any money.
Types of Corporate Liquidation
Depending upon the circumstances and the application of very specific criteria, liquidation may be undertaken in a number of ways:
Creditors Voluntary Liquidation
To wind up the affairs of the company where the directors have determined that due to the insolvency of the business they no longer wish to continue trading.
A Creditors Voluntary Liquidation is also possible where a company has been placed into voluntary administration and a proposal for a Deed of Company Arrangement has not been accepted by creditors.
- The appointment can be made with an almost immediate effect in most circumstances in a Company whereby the shareholdings are closely held.
- Allows for an independent insolvency practitioner to investigate the affairs of the company, make recoveries of non commercial transactions, realise company assets and make a distribution to creditors in accordance with the Corporations Act.
Condon Associates can advise clients whether this is the most appropriate mechanism to deal with the company’s debts and, if so, can act as liquidator of the company.
A receiver is usually appointed to recover funds owing to a secured creditor. The receiver can either continue to trade-on the business or realise some or all of the company’s assets to repay the secured creditor.
- Appointment is performed by the secured creditor pursuant to the provisions of its charge document.
- Secured creditor is able to recover their debt.
Condon Associates have significant experience in this area and we have successfully been able to recover monies owed to secured creditors in cases where it was thought this would not be possible.
In addition, Condon Associates are able to offer clients advice in relation to the most appropriate means of advancing monies to businesses while effectively securing their financial interest.
To wind up the affairs of an insolvent company by way of an application to the court. The most common reason that a company is wound up by the court is because it has failed to comply with the demands of an unsecured creditor.
- Provides a mechanism for creditors to wind up companies who have not paid their debts
- The official liquidator takes possession and control of the company’s assets for the purpose of realising the maximum amount for creditors
- Investigates the company’s affairs to determine if there are any further assets to be realised or any recovery actions that may be commenced.
Condon Associates can provide specialised assistance during the recovery process and are qualified to act regarding liquidations of this nature.
This form of court appointed liquidator is usually used in instances where there is some aspect of urgency or concern for the protection of company assets.
There is no necessity for the company to be wound up and it is possible, albeit uncommon, for the company to be returned to the directors’ care.
The appointment is usually made on the application of a creditor, shareholder or director.
- The provisional liquidator takes possession and control of the assets and affairs of the company. Assets that are in danger are therefore secured.
- An investigation of the company’s affairs is conducted and the results of which are reported to the court.
- The court may then appoint an official liquidator or return the control of the company to the directors
If a company is no longer carrying on a business and meets certain specific criteria, an application may be lodged with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission for deregistration.
The directors or the shareholders are able to apply for the deregistration, but to be eligible, the company must meet various criteria such as not having any liabilities and having agreement amongst all shareholders.
- Cost savings associated with not conducting investigations into the affairs of the company
Condon Associates can arrange for the inexpensive deregistration of a company.
Personal Insolvency & Bankruptcy
If you simply cannot reach a compromise or an agreement with your creditors, you may become bankrupt.
Bankruptcy is a complex and serious matter, so before considering this course of action ( to declare bankruptcy/or become a bankrupt) you should talk to one of our trained and experienced advisers on the help you can get regarding bankruptcy.
It is important to remember that under certain circumstances it is possible for one of your creditors to apply for your bankruptcy, if you suspect that this may happen to you or to one of your clients, please talk to us without delay.
A person who is declared bankrupt receives the protection of the ‘Bankruptcy Act’ and a registered Bankruptcy Trustee is appointed to manage the affairs of the bankrupt estate.
- Provides a fair and equitable distribution of the bankrupt’s estate to his/her creditors.
- Permits a person who is in a dire financial position to obtain immediate relief from the pressure of most of their unsecured creditors and to make a fresh start.
- Allows for the trustee to protect and sell certain assets for the benefit of the bankrupt estate.
- Allows for an investigation of the bankrupt’s affairs by the trustee with the purpose of identifying transactions that are able to be set aside and thereby recover moneys for creditors.
Schon Condon is a registered Bankruptcy Trustee and is able to act in the above circumstances as a trustee. He has the necessary qualifications and expertise to provide the most appropriate solution to individual situations.
Personal Insolvency Agreements (IPA, also known as Part X Arrangements)
These often provide an alternative to bankruptcy for insolvent individuals who wish to reach an agreement with their creditors regarding the settlement of their debts.
- May provide a greater return to creditors than would otherwise be available under bankruptcy;
- May allow a sole trader to continue operating their business;
- Avoiding the stigma of bankruptcy, and providing a flexible framework to resolve the solvency issues of the debtor and deal with creditors’ claims.
Debt Agreements are similar to Personal Insolvency Agreements, however they are only available to debtors who satisfy strict threshold requirements concerning the level of debts, assets and income.
- Low cost means of resolving insolvency;
- Once creditors have accepted the agreement, the debtor is released from those debts that they would be released from if they became bankrupt;
- May allow a sole trader to continue operating their business;
- Not precluded from being or becoming a company director.
This arrangement allows the person to deal with creditors’ claims without the need for a formal insolvency appointment. It is most suitable to debtors with a small number of creditors who have not started legal recovery action. Here the major benefit to all parties is that costs are significantly lower than a formal insolvency appointment.
Condon Associates has significant experience in dealing with creditors and can provide assistance in all of the above forms of negotiation.
A company must meet various criteria points such as not having any liabilities and having agreement amongst all shareholders. Our experienced team of turnaround experts will analyse the condition of your company and determine your best course of action.
Expert application of correct business strategies can stabilise a company long enough to return the company to viability.
We can assist you with the application which needs be lodged with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission for deregistration. Whilst done, this is not our recommended solution. Feel free to ask why.
Strategies may include:
The main purpose of a voluntary administration is to provide a company with a viable alternative to winding up where there is scope for restructuring its financial affairs.
- One main advantage of the voluntary administration appointment is the expediency with which it can be implemented. The directors are able to effect the appointment of a voluntary administrator immediately upon resolving that the company is insolvent or likely to become insolvent.
- This method also affords the directors the opportunity to consider making a proposal to creditors dealing with the restructuring plan for the company and an arrangement as to how it plans to repay or compromise its debts.
- There is a moratorium on any outstanding debts, except for secured creditors. These measures provide directors with ‘breathing space’ to focus on the most effective means of resolving the company’s financial problems.
- Provides an opportunity for the business to continue trading in the future and allows for a greater return to creditors than would otherwise be possible.
Condon Associates has had vast experience with appointments of this type and assists in providing commercial and practical solutions.
Deed of Company Arrangements
The purpose of a Deed of Company Arrangement is to formalise a proposal made by the directors or others during the Voluntary Administration, which has been ratified by creditors. A Deed of Company Arrangement is a legally binding document between the company, its creditors and the administrator.
- It allows the implementation of a revised business plan and strategy to return the business to profitable trading.
- The flexible nature of the proposal (ie. the form and content of the Deed of Company Arrangement can be composed in any manner the company wishes, subject to approval by creditors)
- Can provide a greater return to creditors than would otherwise be available if the company were placed into liquidation.
Condon Associates has acted as Deed Administrator for many companies and have worked with them to see business profitability restored, with creditors receiving substantially more than they would have otherwise received.