Distressed asset realisation

DibbsBarker is recognised for our depth of experience in distressed asset realisation for financiers and insolvency administrators. Our dedicated team features lawyers with a wealth of experience, including lessons learned from the most recent cyclical property downturn following the Global Financial Crisis.

Our team regularly handles high volume residential asset sales and acts for a number of Australia's leading banks, financiers and insolvency administrators including various major Australian banks, PPBA and PwC, in respect of a diverse range of distressed assets including:

  • retail, commercial and industrial real estate
  • incomplete real estate developments
  • insolvent businesses
  • agribusiness assets including water assets
  • hotels and other licensed businesses
  • service stations.

We understand that efficient realisation of these assets is about understanding:

  • our clients’ commercial objectives and the role of other stakeholders in the process (such as mortgage insurers and property presenters)
  • the legislative responsibilities that financiers and insolvency administrators face upon taking possession of real estate assets, including obligations and responsibilities relating to residential, commercial and retail tenancies, environmental risks, and third party interests
  • the legislative framework within which our clients and insolvency administrators must operate, including the requirements of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth)
  • securities and the powers that arise under those securities.


Licensed premises: We have acted in a large number of sales of hotels and other licensed properties. This includes dealing with liquor licence transfers to the receiver’s nominee, addressing poker machine entitlement transfer issues, dealing with gaming machine jackpot winning claims, addressing smoke-free environment legislation, preparing and lodging cease to trade and other notifications with the relevant licensing authority in the relevant jurisdiction, drafting special conditions sale contracts, dealing with liquor licensing and licence transfer to the purchaser and ensuring compliance with all relevant legislation and planning requirements.

Rural landholdings: Our team has been appointed by both mortgagees and receivers to act in the sale of large rural properties and operating farms. This includes dealing with rights of access, Crown enclosure permits, ownership of plant and equipment, and Aboriginal heritage issues.

Water assets: We have significant experience in dealing with water access licensing issues, including perfecting security in respect of all forms of water tenures, issuing default notices under water access legislation, dealing with unauthorised temporary transfers of entitlements and drafting special conditions to deal with water access licences, bore licences and specific purpose licences.

Commercial and industrial: We acted on a receivership involving a residential block of flats and three further commercial / industrial properties valued between $10 million and $12 million. We provided advice on GST, survey issues, residential tenancy laws, work health & safety issues, environmental issues and advice on default under a commercial lease. We provided advice on the cross-collateralisation of the securities to ensure that, as far as possible, the security was realised in order to maximise the recovery to the secured lender.

Residential (volume): Acted for a receiver on a staged residential subdivision involving over 100 residential sales, GST issues, house and land packages and planning and construction issues.

Senior Associate
T +61 2 8233 9689
Recent News and Publications
13 Dec 2017
The silly season is upon us and with that comes a greater emphasis on just ‘getting the deal done’ before year’s end. While remedies are available to contractual parties where mistakes have been made in finalising deal documentation, they can be costly to resolve. Proper care therefore needs to be taken to ensure that final documents truly reflect what was agreed between the parties.
06 Dec 2017
The Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Act 2017 (Cth) applies to government agencies, private sector organisations with annual turnovers over $3m, and all organisations handling health information or involved in credit reporting.
29 Nov 2017
The newly enacted Treasury Laws Amendment (2017 Enterprise Incentives No.2) Act (Cth) 2017 (Safe Harbour Legislation) is primarily concerned with giving company directors breathing space in circumstances where a restructure is being pursued.