10 year disqualification for acting as a company director while bankrupt

Peter Henry Nicholson was found to be acting as the sales director of a Lincolnshire printing company, a breach of his bankruptcy.

Mr Nicholson has given an undertaking to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy preventing him from being directly or indirectly involved in the promotion, formation or management of a company for ten years from 20 December 2016.

A bankruptcy order had been made against Mr Nicholson on 14 May 2012, preventing him from acting as a company director for a period of 12 months. Despite this restriction, without the leave the Court in contravention of Section 11 of the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, he was appointed as the sales director of Tandem Print Solutions Limited (formerly Tandem Solutions Group Limited) on 1 June 2012 and remained in post until 18 March 2014. The company went into Administration on 31 July 2014.

Commenting on the disqualification, Sue MacLeod, Chief Investigator at the Insolvency Service said:

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy will continue to uphold the integrity of the insolvency regime and will not hesitate to act if a bankrupt breaches the restrictions to which he is subject. This disqualification should act as a deterrent and warning to others who might be considering such breaches.

Notes to editors

Peter Henry Nicholson is of Wolverhampton and his date of birth is September 1965.

Tandem Print Solutions Limited (Company Registration No. 06982529) was incorporated on 5 August 2009 and traded from Southfield House Falcon Way, Southfields Business Park, Bourne, Lincolnshire PE10 0FF. The company supplied photocopier and printer services to local businesses including schools.

A bankruptcy order was made against Peter Henry Nicholson (date of birth 6 September 1965) on 14 May 2012. He was appointed as a registered director of the company on 1 June 2012.

There are restrictions set out in insolvency law that the bankrupt is subject to until they are discharged from bankruptcy – normally 12 months - and include that bankrupts:

  • must disclose their status to a credit provider if they wish to get credit of more than £500
  • who carry on business in a different name from the name in which they were made bankrupt, they must disclose to those they wish to do business with the name (or trading style) under which they were made bankrupt
  • may not act as the director of a company nor take part in its promotion, formation or management unless they have a court’s permission to do so
  • may not act as an insolvency practitioner, or as the receiver or manager of the property of a company on behalf of debenture holders

A disqualification order has the effect that without specific permission of a court, a person with a disqualification cannot:

  • act as a director of a company
  • take part, directly or indirectly, in the promotion, formation or management of a company or limited liability partnership
  • be a receiver of a company’s property

Disqualification undertakings are the administrative equivalent of a disqualification order but do not involve court proceedings. Persons subject to a disqualification order are bound by a range of other restrictions.

The Insolvency Service, an executive agency sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), administers the insolvency regime, and aims to deliver and promote a range of investigation and enforcement activities both civil and criminal in nature, to support fair and open markets. We do this by effectively enforcing the statutory company and insolvency regimes, maintaining public confidence in those regimes and reducing the harm caused to victims of fraudulent activity and to the business community, including dealing with the disqualification of directors in corporate failures.

BEIS’ mission is to build a dynamic and competitive UK economy that works for all, in particular by creating the conditions for business success and promoting an open global economy. The Criminal Investigations and Prosecutions team contributes to this aim by taking action to deter fraud and to regulate the market. They investigate and prosecute a range of offences, primarily relating to personal or company insolvencies.

The agency also authorises and regulates the insolvency profession, assesses and pays statutory entitlement to redundancy payments when an employer cannot or will not pay employees, provides banking and investment services for bankruptcy and liquidation estate funds and advises ministers and other government departments on insolvency law and practice.

Further information about the work of the Insolvency Service, and how to complain about financial misconduct, is available.

All public enquiries concerning the affairs of the company should be made to: The Official Receiver, Public Interest Unit, 2nd Floor, 3 Piccadilly Place, London Road, Manchester, M1 3BN. Tel: 0161 234 8531 Email: piu.north@insolvency.gsi.gov.uk.