In one or so years I will be leaving university and start working full-time. I've been reading about compensation methods in different industries.

As we all know, many industries give part of annual compensation in company's stock.

I've however heard of some terms on the contract that state that this stock cannot be sold immediately, and the receiver should wait a number X of years before being "free" to do what he or she wishes. Due to the fact that people receive stock every year, this is referred as a "lock-up".

My question is the following: Suppose I work for a company and they just paid me 10,000 Euros in company stock for the year, also saying that I am not allowed to liquidate this asset before December 31, 2023. Now suppose I default one (or several) payments of a bank loan, mortgage, whatever. Can the bank seize this stock?

This question could also apply to partners of private firms. Suppose I work at a consulting company or at a law firm and become a partner. Effectively, I own part of the company and I am entitled to some of the profits. In my understanding this property is also an asset. Can this asset be seized?

If dependent on jurisdiction, I am mainly interested in Europe, specially Luxembourg, Switzerland, France and Germany.

  • This seems like more of a legal question, but I suspect that a debtor could "seize" the stock without liquidating it, or get permission from the company to do so.
    – D Stanley
    Jul 1, 2021 at 15:54

1 Answer 1


Illiquid assets of all kinds can be vulnerable in bankruptcy. Partners in a small business would be well-advised to cover this possibility by agreeing beforehand to terms regarding buying/selling their business interests in the event of a personal bankruptcy.

  • In the UK at least, according to this page, you would have to stop being a partner (or director) if made bankrupt.
    – TripeHound
    Jul 1, 2021 at 21:51

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