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LPC Law Notes Debt Finance Notes

Introduction To Debt Finance Notes

Updated Introduction To Debt Finance Notes

Debt Finance Notes

Debt Finance

Approximately 80 pages

A collection of the best LPC Debt Finance notes the director of Oxbridge Notes (an Oxford law graduate) could find after combing through dozens of LPC samples from outstanding students with the highest results in England and carefully evaluating each on accuracy, formatting, logical structure, spelling/grammar, conciseness and "wow-factor". In short these are what we believe to be the strongest set of Debt Finance notes available in the UK this year. This collection of notes is fully updated for ...

The following is a more accessible plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our Debt Finance Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:


Key issues for banks

Issue Why is it an issue? Solutions

A bank needs to keep its customers happy if it wants to sell them products in the future.

The desirability of maintaining a relationship with the borrower may affect the action that the bank will take if the borrower breaches a provision of the loan agreement, or the loan transfer mechanism it selects.

Loan transfer provisions (LMA) – Consent of borrower is not required if assignment/transfer is to an Existing Lender or if an Event of Default is continuing.

Sub-participation or risk-participation will not require notification of the borrower.


Banks need to ensure that they are protected against credit risk.

Risk is correlated with return. A bank may be willing to make a high-risk loan, but will expect higher interest to compensate it for taking this risk.

Due diligence on the borrower

Well-drafted loan agreement – ensuring the borrower remains roughly the same entity with the same assets throughout the loan period (Representations and Warranties - Negative Pledges, No Financial Indebtedness)


Loan transfers (that achieve a transfer of risk)


An important element of assessing the risk of a loan is working out where the money will come from to repay it – the bank needs to ensure it has recourse to sufficient assets.

However, borrowers may deliberately seek to limit the assets to which the bank has recourse [e.g. SPV].

Lending to corporate groups may also raise issues of subordination – it is thus important to understand the location of the assets within a group structure when a bank is lending to a holdco.

Security/guarantees (recourse to assets on insolvency or parent company’s assets) – especially security on subsidiary’s assets where holdco is not a trading co

Subordination agreements/intercreditor agreements

Refinancing existing loans with higher ranked security

Fuller security packages for SPVs [including right to receive income]

Profit: cost-plus loans The bank’s cost of borrowing money is the interest rate at which it can obtain funds on LIBOR. However, LIBOR will fluctuate during the life of a loan. Therefore, many loans are priced on a cost-plus basis.

Margin (LIBOR + fixed rate)

Mandatory Costs (other costs in making the loan available)

Tax gross-up

Types of loans

Which form of debt is suitable for a borrower will largely depend on the purpose for which the money is required and the size of the capital sum required.

Purpose of loan Assist cash flow – usually a reserve of money to meet shortfalls in working capital (short-term funding requirements) Borrower needs a specific sum of money for a medium to long period (fixed sum over fixed period) Ideal for seasonal businesses – borrower can draw down when the money is needed and pay it back when it is not (saving interest)
Flexibility Flexible – borrower can withdraw capital only when it is required Not flexible – must be fully drawn down in one lump sum or in several tranches (within the Availability Period) Flexible – borrower can withdraw capital when required (but bank will charge a commitment fee as a percentage of the undrawn amount of the facility from time to time)
Discretion to lend? Uncommitted – bank has ultimate discretion Committed – bank must lend if CPs fulfilled and no default continuing (Drawstop) Committed – bank must lend if CPs fulfilled and no default continuing (Drawstop)
Documentation & negotiation of terms

‘Facility’ letter (very little formal documentation)

Bank’s usual terms and conditions

Loan agreement and debenture/security documents/CPs (lots of formal documentation)

Heavily negotiated

Similar documentation to term loan

Repeating Representations deemed to be repeated every time funds are drawn down

Clean down provision to prevent the RCF from becoming long-term core debt

When is it repayable? Repayable on demand – bank needs no reason to demand.

Repayable by the end of the term, unless Event of Default

Amortisation/balloon repayment/bullet repayment

Repayable as borrower chooses over the loan period (unless Event of Default)

Within the Availability Period, individual loans are borrowed for an Interest Period and repaid at the end of that Interest Period [but borrower can ‘roll-over’ borrowing into the next Interest Period].

Anatomy of a loan agreement (bank’s perspective)

Fees are paid Loan monies can only be used for specific purpose outlined in agreement

Operating clauses about use and repayment of loan monies:


Interest Payments

Repayment and Prepayment


Early termination by bank

Interest on its loan is paid Borrower’s financial health is monitored

Information and monitoring clauses:

Conditions Precedent

Representations and Warranties


Events of Default

Loan capital is repaid Security is taken over the borrower’s assets for the loan monies

Clauses governing the relationship between parties and enforcement of the agreement (‘boilerplate’):

Loan transfers

Service of notices

Governing law

Legal opinions

  • Legal opinions cover two things:

    • Confirms that Borrower/Obligors are validly incorporated and have corporate capacity to enter into the Finance Documents and perform its obligations under those Documents; and

    • Confirms that the Finance Documents are legally valid, binding and enforceable – reducing risk of non-payment

  • Will only apply to matters of law and not of fact – the opinion is not a guarantee that the borrower will be able to service the loan or repay the loan

    • Qualifications (relating to matters of law) and assumptions (relating to matters of fact) by the lawyers providing them – to limit liability

  • Legal opinion will be addressed to the bank/agent of a syndicated loan

  • Legal opinions required if:

  1. Secured lending – banking will require an opinion to...

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