Timothy Thompson of Kangs Solicitors discusses some of the procedures attaching to Company Directors Disqualification proceedings.

The Role of the Official Receiver | Director Disqualification Solicitors

In essence an Official Receiver (‘OR’) is appointed when a company enters into compulsory liquidation.

The OR is the person appointed by the Court to deal with company assets and liabilities and to investigate the conduct of the Director(s).

The OR will investigate why the company has failed, whether its failure can be attributed to improper conduct on behalf of its Director(s) and will present his findings in a formal report.

My company has been wound-up | Solicitors for Official Receiver Interviews

Upon the winding up of a company, the OR’s office may well contact you to arrange a convenient time for you to attend their office for interview.

However, alternatively, the OR will send you a questionnaire to complete.

The main purpose of this activity is to assess why your company ‘failed’ and to gain information needed for the purpose of establishing whether or not there has been any wrong-doing on your part.

The Director’s Questionnaire | Solicitors for Official Receiver Questionnaires

The Questionnaire will contain very detailed questions delving into your conduct prior to the insolvency and will play a very important role in the decision making process of the OR.

If it is felt that there was improper conduct leading to the insolvency and that you, as Director, are culpable then you could face disqualification from holding official office within a company or being otherwise involved in the administration of a company’s affairs for a period up to 15 years if proceedings are successfully pursued against you.

It is, therefore, of paramount importance that you seek legal representation as early as possible, in order to ensure that you are fully prepared for interview or that the Questionnaire is completed accurately and in a timely manner.

The OR will not simply be interested in Directors registered at Companies House.

It is likely that an interview will be required with or a Questionnaire will be issued to all others who have been holding themselves out as Directors, whether on company documents or by way of any form of conduct displaying authority within the company.

Upon completion of the Questionnaire, an interview will be arranged for you to attend.

S.235 Insolvency Act 1986 places a duty on all registered Directors and all those believed to be associated with the company, as described above, to fully co-operate with the OR and provide all documents and information requested or relevant.

The Insolvency Service Interview | Solicitors for Insolvency Service Interviews

The OR will question you upon the answers given in the Questionnaire.

The interview can last several hours and even days depending on the complexity of the insolvency.

The OR will produce a statement that will have to be signed by you and its
purpose is to amplify points from the Questionnaire and matters requiring possible further investigation.

The statement may give a concise chronological history of the company, the dates and facts that explain the reason for the insolvency and may include:

  • details of the formation of the company, dealing with any predecessor business or businesses
  • the respective roles and responsibilities of all the company officers, and how that responsibility was identified
  • how the business operated and how trading was financed, including loans from and to company officers
  • details of any transactions with associated companies, and an explanation of why such transactions occurred and where they can be evidenced in the accounting records
  • details of any accounts prepared and what accounting records were kept, and by whom they were maintained
  • when and why losses were sustained, and what steps were taken, and by whom, in order to mitigate losses sustained, how continued trading was financed and monitored
  • why the business failed (if it failed) and when and why the business ceased to trade
  • any matters of apparent misconduct
  • any other reasons for the insolvency.

What can happen next? | Solicitors dealing with the Insolvency Service

There are several alternatives available to the OR following the investigation.

The Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, section 7(3), requires office holders for insolvent companies, including the appointed OR, to report to the Secretary of State upon their findings.

This report will be comprehensive and will include findings and recommendations relating to registered Directors and any others found to have acted to the detriment of the company.

How Kangs Solicitors can help you | Insolvency Service Solicitors

As specialists in this field, we can provide you with the necessary advice, guidance and support to ensure that your interests are properly protected.

We are regularly instructed at all stages of company investigation(s), from completing Questionnaires to attending interviews.

Our experience is that clients benefit greatly from receiving legal advice as soon as they become aware of the possibility of the issue of disqualification proceedings as there are many tactical considerations that need to be addressed at this early stage.

Who can I contact for help? | Kangs Solicitors

Our team of expert solicitors who have many years of experience of dealing with such matters will be pleased to hear from you.

Many clients call us for help and our team members are listed below. Please feel free to call any of our experts.

Hamraj Kang
hkang@kangssolicitors.co.uk
07976 258 171 | 020 7936 6396 | 0121 449 9888

Tim Thompson
tthompson@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 020 7936 6396 | 07989 521210