Fraud committed by third parties
Corporate fraud is of all times, but the digitisation of our lives has given it a boost. Added to that, new technological advances have only made it easier to move money around, with national borders no longer being a barrier to shifting assets. We therefore increasingly see companies being deliberately stripped of assets, leaving their creditors empty-handed.
The main impact of this type of fraud on the companies in question is that they suffer significant financial losses by not being able to recover their receivables. Fortunately, there are ways of obstructing fraud.
Five tips to stay ahead of fraud
- Always comprehensively verify the identities of new (major) contracting parties by consulting the Chamber of Commerce's Business Register.
- Look out for changes of name (e.g. in emails and on invoices) and address.
- Collect receivables assiduously and keep any exposure you may have (including outstanding balances) within limits.
- Demand security such as pledges, retention of title or a surety agreement
- Verify whether the Chamber of Commerce number given on invoices you receive matches the contracts you have concluded
If you have nevertheless detected fraud, take action as soon as possible to limit the damage.
Four practical tips after detecting fraud
- Check your remaining recovery options right away
- Levy an attachment
- Try to trace the missing assets
- Assess whether your contacts (or other third parties) can be held liable for your losses
What Van Benthem & Keulen can do for you
If you would like proactive legal support after discovering fraud or any instance of abuse, we would be happy to assist you in identifying the fraud and those behind it. We also assess whether any other party is liable, such as your contracting party's management or the party to which assets have been transferred. If your contracting party is on the brink of insolvency or is already insolvent, we will advise you on any follow-up steps to take. This also applies if your contracting party has been delisted from the Business Register due to expedited liquidation.
We also have extensive experience advising on and litigating against directors and other parties who have (illegally) transferred their business to another company, leaving creditors high and dry with an irrecoverable claim against what is now a shell company. Finally, we also regularly assist claimants seeking to sue the board of a foundation or association for fraud committed by their officers.
Podcast on Corporate fraud and abuse
If you would like to find out more about corporate fraud and abuse, our lawyer, Juliette Wareman, discusses this topic in detail In episode 51 of our "Licht op Legal" podcast [available in Dutch only]. In it, she explains how to recognise corporate fraud and abuse and how to combat it. Do you have questions about corporate fraud and abuse? Please contact one of our specialists. All our specialists speak English fluently.