Posted on: Friday 7th September, 2018
If you are looking to close your limited company, you may have attempted to strike it off by submitting a DS01 form to Companies House. This process is also sometimes referred to as dissolving or company dissolution. However, if your company is insolvent – that is if it has more debts than it has assets – you may find your strike off application is rejected. This is because striking off is a process designed for solvent companies, not those which have outstanding creditors.
The most common reason why an application would be rejected is due to an outstanding creditor registering an objection to your proposal. Creditors are inclined to oppose a strike off request as once the company has been dissolved, creditors are no longer able to chase the company for the money it owes. Keeping the company active means creditors can continue to pursue the money in the hopes of getting paid.
If you find yourself in this position, you have a couple of options. Firstly you can resubmit the DS01 form and hope it is approved second time around. However, once a creditor knows you are looking to dissolve your business, they will likely be keeping a close eye on your activities and will be ready to object to the application again. Although you can apply for strike off as many times as you like, creditors are likewise able to object every application you make.
Alternatively, the other way to close your company is by going through a formal liquidation process. For insolvent companies this is known as a Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation (CVL). The process can only be entered into under the guidance of a licensed insolvency practitioner.
While this does come with a cost, it is likely to be your only option should you be unable to strike off using the DS01 form. Placing your company into a CVL has a number of benefits for you as a company director. Firstly, this process will result in your company being closed down in the correct manner, with your creditors receiving a fair proportion of any assets or funds your business has. Any debt left unpaid at this point will be written off with the exception of any borrowing you have personally guaranteed. The appointed insolvency practitioner will deal with creditors on your behalf and will handle the whole process from start to finish. By placing your company into liquidation you are protecting yourself from inadvertently making preference payments and ensuring you adhere to your duties as a director of an insolvent company.
Another lesser well known benefit of formal liquidation is that you may be eligible to claim director redundancy as part of the process. As long as you have a minimum of two years’ service and are paid a regular salary from your company through the PAYE system, it is likely that you will qualify. If you strike off your company, however, you waive your right to claim these entitlements; it is only by formally liquidating your company that you can claim redundancy pay.
The amount you may be able to receive depends on your age, length of service, and the salary earned during this time. On top of this, you may also be able to claim notice pay, holiday pay, and unpaid wages; these additional elements can increase your total claim value significantly.
If you have had your strike off application rejected, talk to Redundancy Claims UK to discover if you may be eligible to claim director redundancy. If so, you may be able to use this money to pay the liquidation fees and even have some left over for you to spend however you choose. Call our expert team today on 0800 063 9261 or use our online claims calculator.