Amendments were made to the Bankruptcy Act a number of years ago which required trustees to advertise Controlling Trustee meetings and meetings to consider Section 73 proposals by bankrupts in a national newspaper AND a local newspaper. In many instances, subject to the actual publications used, this could mean an outlay of up to $1,800 for every meeting.
Thankfully, and to their credit, ITSA (the regulatory authority for such matters) is proposing altering the current Inspector-General requirements concerning such advertising to allow advertising for such meetings on the ITSA web site.
The proposed change is that from 1 September 2010 the trustee will be able to have the advertisement appear on the ITSA web site instead of having to advertise in both a national and a local newspaper. A fee of $275 (inclusive of GST) will apply from 1 November 2010.
This represents a saving of around $1,525. The advertisement will appear on the ITSA web site up until the date of the meeting, and in fact will remain there for up to 5 business days after the meeting.
If they choose to, trustees may also wish to advertise other meetings on the ITSA web site.
Not only does this represent a significant saving in advertising costs, it also means creditors and their professional advisers need only visit one location for such advertisements to become aware of what meetings are being held for debtors they have an interest in. The web site address for ITSA is www.itsa.gov.au.
We look forward to when ASIC might also have a similar facility for stakeholders in the numerous advertisements currently required by the Corporations Act in corporate matters.