On the 10th of December Professor Tibor Tajti from the Central European University held an open lecture on the current developments on secured transaction law harmonization in Europe with special focus on the possibility of Europe adopting the unitary model.
The many students in attendance were first given insights on the functioning of the unitary model. This system, focusing on in rem rights on movables, was implemented by many Anglo Saxon countries because of its high functionality (e.g. a very creditor friendly self-help regime). It is modeled after the US Commercial Code Art 9 system with different variations in the respective countries.
Prof. Tajti then elaborated on the different continental European approaches towards secured transaction. Many European countries have in recent years attempted to reform their secured transactions law by implementing different parts of the unitary model. These mechanisms and regimes were then compared with the US as well as UK systems and advantages and disadvantages were analyzed in detail. Furthermore, some of the recent developments in China were discussed.
With some of the advantages of the unitary model in mind, Prof. Tajti explored the possibility of implementing a harmonized secured transaction system in Europe that exceeds the current soft law attempts. He came to the conclusion that although the adoption of a unitary system would be economically beneficial, it is unlikely to happen anytime soon as the legal traditions (common law vs. civil law) and the policy choices of the EU member states vary greatly with regard to secured transactions.
The lecture was followed by a vivid Q&A where students were able to ask questions and voice their opinions on the discussed topics.
Article by Marek Bruno Ulrik Beck (MEIL International Student from 2014 Intake)