Successful claims for liquidator against directors for breach of duty

Verisona Law took over the representation of the liquidator in this complex matter from another firm of solicitors.

The liquidator’s claim was for recovery of substantial sums arising from alleged antecedent transactions being misfeasance/breach of fiduciary duty/transactions at an undervalue/preference on the part of the directors and a company they controlled.  The allegations centred around the transfer of the business, its assets and certain valuable contracts to this other company some 18 months before commencement of the winding up.

Having reviewed the liquidators analysis and the relevant documentation we interviewed the directors and satisfied ourselves that there were good prospects of successfully pursuing the identified causes and of making a recovery.  Consequently we entered into a conditional fee agreement to represent the liquidator in Court proceedings.

Proceedings were subsequently issued against the directors and their company.  However, after service of the proceedings the parties agreed to meet to investigate the prospects of settlement.  An all-day negotiation resulted in a successful settlement with the directors and their company agreeing to pay cash and withdraw certain claims in the liquidation resulting in approximately £1 million being made available to creditors.


Individuals in financial difficulty

  • Assistance with financial difficulties, personal guarantees, statutory demands, bankruptcy issues and individual voluntary arrangements
  • Dealings with the Official Receiver, The Insolvency Service and trustees in bankruptcy (including possession actions in relation to residential property)
  • Insolvency-related disputes and litigation.

Businesses in financial difficulty

  • Advice on business refinancing and restructuring
  • Advice on and management of insolvency procedures
  • Negotiations with trade creditors, HMRC (including ‘time to pay’ agreements), landlords, banks, factoring companies, financiers and insolvency practitioners
  • Business sales.

Insolvency practitioners

  • Technical advice, transactional support and litigation services locally and nationally
  • Assistance with investigations
  • Insolvency-related disputes and litigation (including construction disputes)
  • Personal insolvency issues
  • Asset and debt recovery
  • Asset and business sales
  • Property issues
  • Employment issues
  • Cross-border assistance.

Creditors

  • Advice on issuing statutory demands and bankruptcy petitions
  • Maximising recoveries
  • Retention of title issues
  • Enforcement of personal guarantees
  • Representation at creditor meetings.

Buyers of distressed or insolvent businesses

  • Advice on purchasing distressed or insolvent businesses
  • Risk assessment and due diligence
  • Support for valuation and price negotiation
  • Related property, leasehold and employment issues.

Exploring how best to secure payment of the Court award

The Defendant was the sole owner of his property and we discovered there was one mortgage registered against it.  Mortgage enquiries and a valuation showed there was over £300,000 of equity in the property. 

Taking Court action to settle the debt

First we obtained a Final Charging Order. This means that the Judgment debt is registered and secured against the property as an equitable charge.

We then applied to the Court for an Order for Sale whereby the property would be sold and the proceeds of sale, following the discharge of the mortgage and other costs, would be used to settle the client’s claim. 

Although the Defendant strenuously opposed the application, the Court granted an Order for Sale and ordered the Defendant to vacate the property. They refused to leave.

Full repayment of the debt

At this point the Bailiff was instructed to take possession of the property and the Defendant was evicted.   It was then sold and we recovered full settlement of the debt and payment of legal costs for our client. 

The balance of the proceeds of sale was paid to the Defendant. 

Orders for Sale are granted at the discretion of the Court and the Court may be unwilling to make an Order for Sale if there are young children, elderly or disabled occupiers living in the property.

A building company


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