Argentina: Security Interests In Argentina And Other Legal Tools To Enforce Collection Of Debts. A Brief For Foreign Lenders

Last Updated: 10 April 2017
Article by Mario Eduardo Castro Sammartino

1. Security interests

Security interests in Argentina may be structured through different agreements according to the nature of the assets included as collaterals.

The Civil and Commercial Code of the Nation (Código Civil y Comercial de la Nación or CCCN) makes a distinction between personal or movable property and real property or real estate (Articles Number 225 and following).

Real property1 includes the real estate by its nature (the soil itself, its organically embedded things and those located without human intervention. CCCN, Article Number 225) and the real estate by accession (personal property immobilized by being physically attached to the soil with a lasting nature, with the exception of things inherent to the real estate´s operation or to the owner´s activity. CCCN, Article 226). Movable property includes those things that may move by themselves or by an external force (CCCN, Article Number 227).

Security interests grant the secured creditor a privilege or priority interest to collect the debt over the proceeds of the collateral above the claims of other creditors.

a. Security interests in real estate

Mortgages and antichresis may be used to create a security interest in real estate.

Mortgages may be created over a specific real estate, ship or aircraft. Mortgages over real estate are governed by Articles Number 2,205 through 2,211 of the CCCN. Mortgages over ships and aircraft are regulated by special legislation (the Shipping Law Number 20,094, Article Number 499 and followings, and the Aeronautical Code, Article Number 52 and followings).

Antichresis lies on real estate and registered personal property, whose possession is delivered to the creditor or an appointed third party, and allows the collection of the proceeds to pay out a debt (CCCN, article 2,212).

b. Security interests over movable property

Secured credits over movable property may be created through pledges or chattel mortgages. 

Pledges involve the delivery of a certain debtor´s asset to the creditor or a designated third party (CCCN, Article Number 2,219). Movable property, credits (CCCN, Articles 2,232 through 2,237), cash, and shares (General Companies Law Number 19,550, as amended, Article Number 219) may be pledged.

Chattel mortgages allow the debtor to keep possession over the movable property and may be created by an Agrarian pledge or a registered pledge. Agrarian pledges are regulated by Law Number 9,644 and may be created on agricultural machinery, implements, and tools; animals, their products, and personal property devoted to rural operations; fruits and crops corresponding to the year in which the pledge is made and timber, mining products; and products of national industries (Article Number 2). Registered pledges are governed by Law Number 12,962 (Ley de Prenda), may fall on all kinds of movable assets and be fixed or floating over an inventory of goods.

2. Guaranties

Guaranties, bonds or performance bonds are governed by Articles Number through 1,574 through 1,598 of the CCCN and are also common in financial transactions. A guaranty gives the creditor and additional person to pursue collection if the principal debtor defaults on payment. Unlike security interests, guaranties do not create a lien over any collateral in favor of the creditor.

3. Governing law and jurisdiction

Parties to a loan agreement may choose the laws that will govern the contract with reference to their intrinsic validity, nature, effects, rights and obligations, either to regulate all of the agreement or only a part of it (CCCN, Article 2,651). They may also choose the forum to solve their disputes. 

However, all issues related to real estate located in Argentina, including security interests, are governed exclusively by local laws (CCCN, Article Number 2,667); further, Argentine judges have exclusive jurisdiction to rule on disputes arising out of real estate located in the Country  (CCCN, Articles Number 2,664 and 2,609, sub-article a)).

As far as movable property registered in Argentina is concerned, it is also governed by Argentine law (CCCN, Article 2,668) and is subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of Argentine courts (CCCN, Article Number 2,665). Unregistered movable property, which is permanently situated in a place and is not intended to be moved to a different jurisdiction is governed by the laws of the place where it is located (CCCN, Article Number 2,669) and there exists a concurrent jurisdiction between the judges of the defendant´s domicile and those of the place where the unregistered movable property is located.

Foreign judgments and arbitral awards may be enforced in Argentina following certain recognition conditions.

4. Other legal tools to enforce performance

Further to security interests and guaranties, there are other legal tools the parties may choose to enforce performance of a loan agreement.

a) Trusts

Trusts are governed by Articles 1,666 through 1,700 of the CCCN) and may be used to secure debts, assigning certain assets to a trustee (e.g. real estate, movable property, receivables, etc.) as collaterals. Upon default, the trustee may sell the assets following the agreement´s provisions and, in the absence of stipulation, dispose of them either out of court or by judicial foreclosure (CCCN, Article 1,680). The assignment of the assets to the trustee creates a separate estate, immune to bankruptcy proceedings affecting the settlor, the trustee, or the beneficiaries.

b) Assignment of credits

Assignment of credits, including receivables, may also be executed to enforce payment of loan agreements (CCCN, Article Number 1,614 and following). Creditors may request payment to either the assignor or the debtor of the assigned credit.

5. Reorganization and Bankruptcy procedures

Reorganization and Bankruptcy procedures in Argentina are governed by Law Number 24,522, as amended. Both procedures to deal with insolvency temporarily stays the enforcement of the loan agreement and impose certain procedural burdens upon the creditor. Furthermore, security interests and guaranties may be unenforceable when the debtor is adjudicated bankruptcy and the security interest or guaranty has been created within a certain "suspicion period" (período de sospecha) before the date of insolvency or bankruptcy.

6. Some cross-border considerations on loans

There are no restrictions on foreign lenders to entering into loan agreements with local borrowers or getting securities or guaranties. No exchange control applies. Only must foreign indebtedness be registered with the Central Bank of the Argentine Republic for a debtor to make payment of principal and interest abroad (Communication "A" 3602).

Foreign lenders will be taxed by income tax on the loan´s interests. The general tax rate is 35%, although significant lower rates may apply in certain cases of international financing (Income Tax Law Number 20,628, Article Number 93, sub-article c). The local debtor is liable for withholding and payment of the tax.

Valued Added Tax is levied on the loan´s interests at a general rate of 21%; however, a 10,5% rate may apply in specific loan agreements (Valued Added Tax Law Number 20,631, Article Number 28, sub-article d).

Stamp tax applies to the granting of a loan, security interest or guaranty unless executed under an offer letter – acceptance scheme. This tax varies according to the provincial jurisdiction involved, its rate being commonly around 1%.

Creation of security interests may also involve registration charges and notary fees.


To learn on how to acquire title to or lease real estate to do business in Argentina, please, read our article on our Legal Blog.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Topics
Related Articles
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions