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Norway

Financial difficulties

Updated 06/2012

Legal requirements

Some of the laws that deal with preventing and handling financial difficulties are:

Taking control of your finances

Enterprises can take a number of measures to improve their financial situation. Either by recovery on its own account or by engaging a debt collection agency, the enterprise can obtain assistance in collecting outstanding debts. If the debt collection agency is unable to collect the debts, they can seek judicial redress from the Enforcement Officer, whose Conciliation Board is tasked with finding an amicable solution or establishing in court that the claim is lawful.

It happens that enterprises run into financial difficulties. Particularly in the start-up phase, enterprises have large expenses that fall due for payment before any revenue comes in. That is why liquidity management and good financial control tools are important means of maintaining an overview of the enterprise's solvency. A detailed liquidity budget can expose any unnecessary capital commitments and poor financing within the enterprise. This is also a good basis for assessing the effect of new investments and new funding.

Access to different sources of finance can help overcome financial difficulties.

When filing for bankruptcy is the only option left for a business owner, it pays to cut your losses, initiate proceedings sooner rather than later, and move on to a new project.

Administrative procedures

Payment rules

Payment notice

In enterprises with poor liquidity, it is important to take steps to improve this. To avoid any surprises with credit sales, the enterprise can check potential customers against lists of firms that have payment warnings with a credit rating firm.

If a supplier does not receive payment for his claims, he can contact the Conciliation Board. If the Conciliation Board considers the case too difficult, it may be referred to the district court [tingrett]. If the enterprise is a poor payer, it may attract a payment warning.

Objecting to incorrect claims

For enterprises, the payment warning takes effect 30 days after the demand for payment is sent. A payment warning will also be issued for failure to comply with payment terms - 30 days after the gross payment date. It is not permitted to raise a payment warning in the event of an objection/dispute in the matter. If the payment warning has taken effect, it must be removed if there is an objection/dispute.

Deferral of payment

As a rule, there can be no deferral of payment of tax deductions and employer's contributions; in the case of delayed payment, interest will be charged on the arrears. If it transpires that the enterprise is unable to pay within the time limit, the tax collector in the municipality where the enterprise has its head office should be contacted as soon as possible, in order to find a solution to the problem.

Reorganisation

In the event of financial problems, and where there is a possibility of coping in the future, it may be appropriate to restructure the enterprise.

Various steps can be taken here, and management consultants, auditors and lawyers are among the players who can assist the enterprise in this work. Be aware that company law may contain guidelines on the obligations placed on the board.

Resources

You can find further information on the following web sites:

Help & advice

Help & advice

E-mail a business organisation near you

The EU runs a network (Enterprise Europe Network) of local business organisations in most European countries that may be able to help you.

Choose your country and town and enter your enquiry below.

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