Cooper and Oxley Customer Update

February 2018 | Accounting & Tax

Are you a subcontractor to Cooper & Oxley? What should you do now?

A number of AustAsia’s clients have unfortunately been caught up in the recent decline of Cooper & Oxley. This includes:

  • unpaid invoices
  • tools and equipment trapped on-site, and
  • unpaid materials, fixtures, and fittings already installed on-site

If you are in this situation, we hope you find the following suggestions useful.

The first step is to consider the impact it may have on you. You should talk to your accountant or financial planner as soon as possible to determine what the impact, if any, will be on your business or personal finances. You may also need to take legal advice in relation to formal recovery options that could be available to you.

If you have been affected by the Cooper & Oxley administration or by any of the other WA failed builders, then you could take the following actions.

  1. Approach your existing suppliers and creditors to explore the possibility of extending payment terms. This will assist with easing your immediate and medium-term cash outlays.
  2. Similarly, review your current debtors and see if accelerated payment arrangements could be agreed with your customers. This may include part-payment on outstanding invoices. Likewise, review old debtors and if appropriate, apply pressure for payment.
  3. Approach the ATO in relation to current and future BAS / IAS lodgements, and advise them of the possibility of the new bad debt and request an extension of time to pay your ATO obligation.
  4. Contact your finance broker or bank to explore your options in relation to financing to assist with cash flow. This may take the form of short term personal borrowing, extended overdraft, or short- to medium-term business finance.

The next step is to protect yourself for the future:

  • Are your personal assets protected against any claim or downfall of your business? You may need to take advice on your current ownership structure and consider if any changes need to be made.
  • Do your business trade terms and conditions cover situations such as this or could they better protect you? Have you reviewed your Head Contracts and do you know the terms?
  • Are you utilising the Personal Properties Securities Register to protect your goods and secure payments owed to you? This can also be used to protect trade tools, equipment, and machinery if used correctly. Please click here to view our Personal Properties Securities Act fact sheet.

AustAsia Group has specialised accounting, finance, and legal professionals in-house to help you navigate what can be a stressful and confusing time.

We invite you to contact us to discuss your specific trade and financial circumstances.

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