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Default Outline

LLM Law Outlines > Corporate Bonds and Credit Agreement Outlines

This is an extract of our Default document, which we sell as part of our Corporate Bonds and Credit Agreement Outlines collection written by the top tier of NYU School Of Law students.

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V. Default
Default Provisions, Cure, Rights upon default, No-Action Clauses, Sharing Provisions and Set-off
A. Default Provisions
Freeport-McMoran Indenture, Section 6.01
Northwest Note Agreement, Section 11
Problem Set # 18

1. What is the distinction between a Default and an Event of Default?
Default vs. Events of Default:
- Some default may require notice and/or passage of time to become an event of default
Types of Event of Default
- Freeport 6.01

(a) Payment of interest:
(i) becomes event of default after 30 days, no notice

(b) Payment of principal:
(i) becomes event of default immediately, without notice/ passage of time

(c) comply with covenant under s. 5.01 (on merger)
(i) becomes event of default immediately

(d) fail to comply covenant on some of the sections under Article 4
(i) becomes event of default 30 days after notice

(e) fails to comply with agreements in Securities/ Indenture
(i) becomes event of default 60 days after notice

(f) cross-default exceed $10M
o (g)(h) insolvency events

(i) non-payment of judgement in amount of $10M
o (j) guarantees
- C.f. Northwest (private placement)
o Cure periods tend to be shorter/ none; may have no notice requirement

(f) stricter cross-default provision

(j) covenant disguised as event of default relating to ERISA
Cross Default Provisions
- Freeport 6.01(f) Cross default

(f) "Indebtedness of the Company/ any RS is not paid within any applicable grace period after final maturity or the acceleration by the holders thereof because of a default and the total amount of such indebtedness unpaid or accelerated exceeds $10.0M or its foreign currency equivalent at the time"
o Different creditors competing with each other

Debt 10M not paid after applicable grace period/ maturity/ acceleration

Event of Default was created through event of default under indebtedness of the co. to
Bond A  bondholder B would have the power to generate event of default 
company would give concessions to B that hurt other bondholders like A
- Northwest: Art 11 Events of Default

(f) Cross-default - Stricter/ overly aggressively drafted
(i) (i) Company or RS in default of payment of at least $5M

1 V. Default
Default Provisions, Cure, Rights upon default, No-Action Clauses, Sharing Provisions and Set-off
(ii) (ii) default of compliance with any term of indebtedness of at least $5M
beyond grace period
(iii) (iii) as a consequence of incurrence of any event or condition, co becomes obligated to repay before regular maturity (i.e. acceleration) of at least $5M
or one or more Persons have the right to require the company/ RS to purchase or repay such indebtedness (cross-default upon acceleration)
 Prof: overbroad, calls $10 million of debentures for redemption would also be a default

2. Which of the following constitute Defaults and/or Event of Defaults?
a. Company incurs Indebtedness in violation of the debt limitation covenant.
b. Company fails to make an interest payment when due.
c. Company violates the restrictive payment covenant in an indenture related to another issue of securities. What if the holders of such other issue accelerate the payment of their securities and the Company pays these securities in full upon acceleration?
d. Company calls $10 million of debentures for redemption

Would be event of default under Northwest  drafted too broadly  trigger crossdefault e. Company fails to make a Change of Control Offer within 30 days following a Change of

2 V. Default
Default Provisions, Cure, Rights upon default, No-Action Clauses, Sharing Provisions and Set-off
B. Cure
Metropolitan Life v. RJR Nabisco, 906 F.2d 884 (1990) (P. #1)
 Cure period and litigation  Met Life
 Cure period: passage of time between notice of default and generation of default
 What can happen within the period?

1. Get a waiver on the default from the requisite majority of holders  permanent/

2. Default can be cured  but how?

2 Types of defaults

Generated by positive covenant: easier to cure
 Failure to do something that you are obligated to do  cure by doing it
 E.g. failed to pay interest on time  cure by paying interest
 E.g. providing info, compliance certificate

Generated by negative covenant: more difficult to cure
 Doing something that you are prohibited to do  more difficult to cure
 Cannot cure if the co. cannot undo
 E.g. "Company shall not and shall not permit any RS" to make restricted payment and incurs debt when it is not permitted to do  cure by find some way to undo it
 E.g. Incurred debt  repay the debt to cure
 E.g. Made Restrictive payment  cure by undoing it (though difficult to get money back sometimes)
 E.g. Lien  default  make restrictive payment to eliminate it under
Freeport 4.04(1) would generate another default

Removing the lien would cure the first default, but may not cure the making of restrictive payment

 Prof: maybe this provision is to make curing of default more difficult

Disputed defaults

Bondholder notify company of a default (which triggers the cure period)  but company view that it is not in default (but unsure if court would hold the same)  co can litigate; seek waiver; or cure it

Difficult to litigate within the cure period  company has to gamble
 If its going to win the case, need not worry about default
 If underline default was valid + cure period passed and accelerated  result of acceleration would generate another default (Freeport 6.01(b)
 Once there is a valid acceleration  cannot cure it afterwards
 Prior to valid acceleration  can still cure it up to acceleration.
Because, in order to have a valid acceleration, 6.02: need default that occurred and discontinued

Court: cannot drag the cure period to give time for co to litigate  co. has to gamble

But if bondholder wants to drag out litigation  court may give co. extra time


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