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Documents for previous clients

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We have some documents for a number of limited companies who are no dissolved & the directors no longer represented by our company. We have tried to request them be collected by the previous director/s however none have turned up....I know the rules for retaining documents but is there a procedure in place for this situation where we no longer act on behalf of the client & they won't collect them? Thanks

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Ivor Windybottom
By Ivor Windybottom
19th Aug 2021 09:32

Dissolved companies do not exist - there is no one to ask to collect documents.

Unless you anticipate the company will be reinstated I would suggest secure disposal by shredding then burning the papers, before burying the ashes in an unmarked location at least 10 feet down, remembering to bury an animal 6 feet down to throw anyone off the scent. Do not tell anyone you've done this and you should be OK.

Thanks (5)
By zebaa
19th Aug 2021 09:42

I suggest scan and shred, unless the paper has some sort of legal standing like a deed. Without detail it's not possible to say more, but saving old trade invoices and working papers, as paper, is a waste of ( expensive ) storage space.

Edit: though not a Scot I read 'no dissolved' to mean not dissolved. However if it just a typo then IMO you need only to scan selected documents. By which I mean almost nothing.

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Replying to zebaa:
By SteveHa
19th Aug 2021 09:49

I read it as "Now dissolved".

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Replying to SteveHa:
By David Ex
19th Aug 2021 10:21

SteveHa wrote:

I read it as "Now dissolved".

I read it as “not dissolved”!

Alwys prof rad befor postin.

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Replying to zebaa:
By Leywood
19th Aug 2021 10:39

I read it as 'now' as well.

If 'now' then Directors are no longer Directors of that (defunct) company so they can no longer act. So you really shouldnt be asking them to do anything.

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By David Ex
19th Aug 2021 10:00

Gemma1986 wrote:

they won't collect them?

You mean the former directors of the dissolved companies have refused or haven’t responded or can’t be contacted?

What do your terms of business say on the matter?

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Replying to David Ex:
By Rgab1947
20th Aug 2021 11:00


Dissolved. Former directors have no obligations.

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By paul.benny
20th Aug 2021 08:30

Risk assess:
- how old are the documents
- what are they
- how long since ceasing to be a client
- how long since dissolution
- were the companies bog standard or is there anything a bit iffy
- how likely it is anyone at all will come seeking documents (bearing in mind how often anyone ever requests documents other than when a client moves to another accountant).

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By North East Accountant
20th Aug 2021 09:38

No dissolved?

Not dissolved - send them back to registered office by recorded delivery or courier if too bulky.

Now dissolved - non-contentious secure shredding after 7 years. Contentious - 15 years.

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