Intercreditor agreements often include a provision which prevents the junior creditor from taking enforcement action against collateral upon default under the junior debt for a specified period of time after notice of the default has been given to the senior creditor – this is described as the “standstill period”. The purpose of the standstill period is to give the senior creditor an exclusive period of time during which the senior creditor may assess its rights and, if the senior creditor determines that it will enforce its rights against the collateral, to so enforce such rights without interference from the junior creditor.
The length of the standstill period is usually negotiated, as the junior and senior creditors have competing interests. The junior creditor will usually favour a shorter standstill period, as it will be anxious to begin enforcement action upon default. However, the senior creditor will usually favour a longer standstill period, which will allow them more time to implement their own strategy for enforcement against the collateral. While the length of time of standstill periods vary, most are between 90 and 180 days. There are various factors specific to the circumstances of each transaction that can affect the length of time of the standstill period.
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