Support for companies

Giving you practical advice and answers

Support for companies

Expert evaluation when you need it most

Whether your business is facing financial difficulty, or has come to the end of its trading life, it’s important to evaluate all your options.

The first step is assessing your business. And this is where we come in. We can carry out a thorough, independent review that focuses on getting your business back on track. So you can look forward to becoming financially secure once more, or at least identify the most practical alternative.

Our insolvency practitioners operate through Price Bailey LLP. For information about our regulatory status see www.pricebailey.co.uk/legal.

Here’s where we can help:

Administration

If your company is insolvent, and you’re concerned about the risks of wrongful trading, we might advise you to place the company in administration.

This is the legal process that requires the appointment of a licensed insolvency practitioner as administrator. We can do this for you. Administration could save your company.

Even if you’re facing cash flow pressures, your company might still be worth preserving. If it’s not possible to persuade your creditors to agree out of court to an alternative course of action, such as a compromise or restructuring, we can act as your insolvency practitioner, managing your business affairs.

Voluntary liquidations

You can wind up a solvent or insolvent company through a members’ voluntary liquidation (MVL) or a creditors’ voluntary liquidation (CVL).

MVL is a solvent liquidation, where the company has sufficient assets to pay all its liabilities in full, together with interest at the statutory rate, within 12 months. The liquidator realises the company’s assets, pays off all creditors, together with statutory interest, and returns any surplus to the shareholders.

CVL is an insolvent liquidation, where the company’s assets are insufficient to pay creditors in full, or where the directors are unable or unwilling to swear a Statutory Declaration of Solvency. Again, the procedure is straightforward – but, with a CVL, the liquidator must submit a report on the conduct of the directors to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

If you choose either of these routes, we produce a report for you that combines technical detail with clear recommendations on the best route forward. We make these recommendations on behalf of your bank or other lenders, for your company’s accountants, or for the company’s management.

Compulsory liquidation

If a court decides your company can no longer meet its obligations, compulsory liquidation is essentially a winding up order.

The Official Receiver then becomes liquidator of the company. They investigate its trading history and submit a report to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. They may then look to appoint an insolvency practitioner as liquidator. We can fulfil this role for you. It then becomes our responsibility to realise your company’s assets and distribute the proceeds to creditors.

Voluntary arrangements

Voluntary arrangements involve a company’s directors making a proposal to creditors and shareholders, with full details of all assets and liabilities, including the return creditors can expect compared with other insolvency procedures.

This usually results in delayed or reduced debt payments, capital restructuring or asset disposal.

Despite being a formal procedure under the Insolvency Act 1986, it’s possible to make an agreement quite flexible. Usually the directors are allowed to continue their involvement, subject to review by a licensed insolvency practitioner.

Fixed charge receivership

Fixed charge receivership is a process available to lenders in order to take control of certain assets. The receiver is appointed by a lender with a mortgage, charge or other security over real property or other specified assets. They will generally have broad powers to realise assets and, when dealing with real property, to collect rent.

The Law of Property Act 1925 also allows banks and private lenders, who have secured their loans through a fixed legal charge over a property, to appoint a receiver (commonly known as an LPA Receiver) to deal with the charged property where there has been a default.

The main objective is to recover the debt owed to the lender. However, the statutory powers of an LPA Receiver are limited to collecting income from the property (including rent) and insuring it. These are therefore usually supplemented by additional powers from the legal charge document itself, which more often than not will include powers to sell or refinance the property.

Receivership

Although now relatively uncommon, receivership is where an administrative receiver is appointed by a creditor, usually a bank, which has security over most of a company’s assets.

This normally happens when the creditor has issued a formal demand for payment and not been paid. The receiver then realises and distributes the company’s assets on behalf of creditors. Their job is complete once they realise all the assets subject to the appointor’s charge, or sufficient assets to repay the appointor in full.

Dissolution

If your company becomes dormant, Companies House can remove it from the register.

This is called dissolution, and it’s permitted only under certain circumstances. Creditors must be notified of the intention to dissolve the company and can reject the application. In fact, shareholders and creditors can seek to revive the company for up to six years following dissolution, to allow a proper investigation into the company’s trading history.

Dissolution doesn’t end your company’s existing contractual arrangements, and directors remain potentially liable if the company is restored.

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