LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.

Credit value: 30 credits (12 ECTS)

Module Convenor:
Prof Riz Mokal

Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 20 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students, SIL students
Prerequisites: It would be strongly advantageous to possess familiarity with commercial, security, and/or insolvency laws.
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: Comparative Law, Corporate Law, International Banking and Finance Law, International Commercial Law, Law and Economics
Practice Assessment: Individual feedback on two essays, one in each of the two teaching terms, independent of the final summative essay. One in the first teaching term for SIL students.
Assessment method for LLM students: 3,000 word coursework essay (50%) and 2-hour unseen written examination (50%)
Assessment method for SIL students: 3,000 word coursework essay
Module Overview

Module summary

Business needs credit to create innovation, wealth and employment. The flow of credit through an economy is a function, among other things, of that economy’s legal credit framework. Legislators and policy makers have an interest in understanding how best to facilitate responsible access to credit in their jurisdictions; market participants have interests in influencing this law-making process; and donor organisations with mandates to promote international development and stability have interests in identifying and disseminating international best practices in the design of the credit framework. This module would be of interest to anyone intending to develop a practice of advising any of these stakeholders on such issues.

A country’s credit framework consists, among other things, of the laws and regulations governing credit history information, security interests, risk management practices, informal workout and collection practices, formal enforcement, liquidation and restructuring, and the operations of the commercial judiciary and the specialist insolvency/turnaround profession. Many of these issues intersect in important and illuminating ways with other elements of law and regulation, such as central bank guidance, and tax, financial reporting and accounting laws.

This module will introduce students to the credit framework by examining the law, regulation and practice of each of these points in the credit life cycle. The perspective will be international and comparative, with an emphasis on transnational ‘soft law’ instruments regarded as instantiating ‘best practice’ standards in their domain. This will be supplemented by concrete examples drawn from the national systems of industrially developed, emerging and developing countries. Philosophical and economic analyses will be employed to evaluate extant and possible laws, regulation and practices.

Module syllabus

1. Introduction: The Lifecycle of Enterprise Credit

Lending and Risk Management

2. Credit and Credit Information Systems
3. Security interests: creation, operation, registration
4. Lender credit risk management practices

Informal Distress Resolution

5. Rescheduling and workouts
6. Enabling regulatory frameworks

Individualistic Claim Enforcement

7. Non-court enforcement
8. Court-based enforcement

Collective Claim Enforcement

9. Insolvency Law: Principles, policies, objectives
10. Eligibility, scope, commencement
11. Governance in insolvency proceedings
12. Preservation and realisation of estate
13. Transaction adjustment
14. Treatment of contracts; priorities
15. Restructuring
16. Duties of controlling persons
17. Cross-border issues; enterprise groups

Institutional and Regulatory Frameworks

18. Commercial courts
19. Insolvency professionals

Recommended materials

There is no set text. The following materials will form the primary points of reference in order of importance:

  • Westbrook et al, A Global View of Business Insolvency Systems (Washington, D.C.: Martinus Nijhoff, 2010)
  • The World Bank, Principles for Effective Insolvency and Creditor/Debtor Regimes (2011)
  • Mokal, Corporate Insolvency Law: Theory and Application (Oxford: OUP, 2005)
  • UNCITRAL, Legislative Guide on Insolvency (2005)
  • Garrido, Out-of-Court Debt Restructuring (The World Bank, 2012)
  • Tirado, Regulation of Insolvency Representatives (The World Bank, 2011)
  • The World Bank, The Treatment of the Insolvency of Natural Persons (2012)
  • UNCITRAL, Legislative Guide on Secured Transactions (2010)
  • INSOL International, Principles for A Global Approach to Multi-Creditor Workouts (2000)

Preliminary reading

• The World Bank, Principles for Effective Insolvency and Creditor/Debtor Regimes (2011)

Other information:

Teaching and learning methodology

The module will be taught on a modified Socratic basis: readings will be set in advance and students would be expected to draw on their understanding of the set material actively to participate in seminar discussions in response to the seminar leader’s questioning. A critical approach would be indispensible, with students encouraged not merely to master existing material but to interrogate it by reference both, to the interests of those producing them, and against the values and goals underlying the relevant domains. Students not comfortable with this method of discussion and learning are unlikely to be suited to the demands of the module.

Prizes for this module: There are currently no prizes available for this module.


The application process for the 2015-16 academic session is now open.

Please note, for the 2015-16 intake, we are not accepting the TOEFL test. If you have an English condition to meet, you must take one of the alternative tests listed here instead.