Member Since: 21st Jun 2010
11th May 2012
Can they still operate?
The Insolvency Service has withdrawn the online search facility for both directors' disqualification and bankruptcy restrictions orders, although a bankruptcy search online should reveal if an individual is subject to a BRO. We are therefore limited to only the Companies House information in respect of directors - which, presumably, is supplied by the Insolvency Service.
There is a "hotline" to complain about disqualified directors who are acting illegally - see http://www.bis.gov.uk/insolvency/Companies/insolvent-companies/complain-... In my view anybody who suspects a disqualified director to be acting in this way has a public duty to report it. The Insolvency Service will no doubt pursue the matter with its customary level of enthusiasm.
11th May 2012
Most insolvency practitioners openly admit that it is very difficult to prove that a director deliberately acted in a way to knowingly prejudice creditors except in the most blatant cases. That would suggest to me that only the very obvious cases get reported and many others are too difficult or expensive to substantiate.
On the contrary, our experience is that in the past we fairly frequently found cases we considered were suitable for disqualification, only to have them turned down by the vetting section of the disqualification unit. Some of these were, in our view, blatant however they were not pursued - often on what we considered particularly woolly grounds, such as not being "in the public interest". We have altered our reporting criteria to reflect the fact that some cases we think are worthy of disqualification do not accord with the Insolvency Service's apparently very strict criteria, and there is no justification in incurring costs at creditors' expense for no result.
11th May 2012
Article Acting Whilst Disqualified
I agree totally with Saint - 1,400-odd disqualifications arising from 20,000 administrations and insolvent liquidations a year is very disappointing.
7th Mar 2011
TO INCORPORATE OR NOT TO INCORPORATE
There is a fine dividing line between the benefits of limited liability and the disadvantages. My own view is that anybody who is starting a new business should think very carefully whether he wants to be exposed to personal liability for the business' debts - particularly if he is considering employing anybody or incurring any significant level of debt to suppliers or others. I would always feel more comfortable knowing that my house wasn't at risk.
The question of incorporating an existing business is of course different and should be driven by taxation considerations as well as seeking protection from debt. However even very sound busiesses can suffer disasters and unforeseen circumstances which lead to insolvency and possible bankruptcy of their principals.
21st Jun 2010
‘Time to Pay’ may be scrapped in Budget
Speaking as an insolvency practitioner I would welcome the additional business such a move would generate. Speaking as a businessman however I think it would be ludicrous and could cause considerable damage to the progress of economic recovery in the UK.