20+ Years Experience

Specialist Insolvency Practitioners

Licensed Insolvency Practitioners

Insolvency Practitioners Nationwide

Director Dispute Over Liquidation

When a company faces the challenging decision of liquidation, it’s not uncommon for disputes over wants to liquidate director wants to liquidate to arise among company directors, often referred to as a “director dispute over liquidation.”

Balancing personal interests, legal obligations, and the company’s welfare can be a complex and delicate process.

This blog post explores the intricacies of director disputes over liquidation, discussing the available options and strategies for resolution, the legal implications and consequences, and the importance of seeking professional advice to navigate this challenging terrain.

Short Summary

  • Director disputes over liquidation require consideration of legal rights and obligations, as well as the potential use of mediation or negotiation.
  • Navigating just and equitable grounds can provide a court-based resolution to director disputes resulting in either Members’ Voluntary Liquidation or Court-Ordered Winding Up.
  • Professional advice is essential for effectively managing director disputes over liquidation. Research and consultation can help find the most suitable advisor/solicitor.

Understanding Director Disputes Over Liquidation

Director disputes over liquidation can stem from various factors, such as a departing director wanting to ensure the company owes outstanding liabilities are settled before fully closing down the company, or when one director wishes to continue operating while the two other directors do not.

These disputes can be particularly challenging when there are only two directors holding equal shares in the business.

To navigate such disputes, directors may consider seeking a decision from the courts, engaging in mediation and negotiation, a shareholder agreement or pursuing buyouts and share transfers.

Additionally, they should be aware of their rights and obligations under the Companies Act 2006, the Articles of Association, and any shareholders’ agreement.

Consulting experienced business advisors can also be helpful in such circumstances.

Navigating Just and Equitable Grounds

In certain situations, a court ruling on just and equitable grounds may be the most appropriate route for resolving a director dispute or ongoing disputes over liquidation.

This can lead to one party two possible outcomes: Members’ Voluntary Liquidation (MVL) or Court-Ordered Winding Up.

Members’ Voluntary Liquidation

Members’ Voluntary Liquidation (MVL) is a process in which all business assets are sold, with the proceeds distributed among the company falling shareholders, and the company is dissolved.

If the court determines that liquidation is the most suitable approach and the company is solvent, an MVL will be initiated.

In this scenario, the party that wishes to continue operating the company may have the opportunity to reestablish the business, utilising the existing contracts or customer base of the company name existing clients.

Court-Ordered Winding Up

On the other hand, a court-ordered or winding-up petition only occurs when such a claim or winding-up petition is submitted by a creditor.

The court evaluates the petition and determines whether to grant the order. If granted, the company is shut down and its assets are liquidated.

This process can have a significant impact on the company’s creditors, shareholders, and employees.

Strategies for Resolving Director Disputes

When resolving director disputes, a combination of mediation, negotiation, buyouts, and share transfers may be employed.

In cases of insolvent liquidations, it is crucial to prioritize the interests of the company’s creditors above all else.

Mediation and Negotiation

Mediation involves the assistance of a neutral third party to facilitate the resolution of a dispute between the conflicting directors, while the negotiation is a process that takes place directly between the directors who disagree with the parties to reach a mutually satisfactory agreement.

Mediation can be particularly effective in preserving the company’s value and enabling ongoing trade, as it allows the parties to find a resolution that takes their respective interests and the company’s welfare into account.

In a deadlock situation, where two directors with equal shares in the limited company cannot reach an agreement on a matter of strategy or believe that the co-director or partnership has no future, mediation can be an invaluable tool to overcome the impasse and find a mutually acceptable solution.

Buyouts and Share Transfers

Buyouts and share transfers are other approaches to resolving director disputes, particularly in cases of divorce proceedings where married directors are dissolving their partnership.

One director can purchase the other director,’s shares, or the court may facilitate a limited company divorce settlement, in which the remaining director acquires the departing shareholder’s shares.

This dispute resolution strategy can be particularly effective in cases where one director wishes to liquidate the company while the other director wants to liquidate but continue operating.

By transferring shares, the remaining director can maintain control over operation day to day, of the company’s issues and determine its future course of action, while the departing director can exit the business and receive compensation for their shares.

Insolvent Liquidations and Director Responsibilities

In the event of an insolvent liquidation, directors must remain mindful of their responsibilities and obligations, prioritising the company and its creditors above all else.

Cooperation with the liquidator during the process is essential, including providing necessary records and attending interviews to answer any questions.

Prioritizing Creditors

When liquidating an insolvent company, the order of priority for creditors is crucial: secured creditors with a fixed charge, preferential creditors, secured creditors with a floating charge, unsecured creditors, and finally, shareholders.

Prioritizing creditors in this manner can have a significant effect on the amount of money that creditors receive during liquidation, ensuring a fair distribution of the company’s assets.

Avoiding Wrongful Trading

Directors must be vigilant in avoiding wrongful trading, which occurs when they engage in activities that detrimentally affect the position of other creditors,, including continuing to trade and accruing additional debt.

To prevent wrongful trading, directors should maintain detailed financial forecasts, hold regular board meetings, seek professional advice, and document all key business decisions.

If an investigation into wrongful trading is conducted, directors may face disqualification from acting as a director for up to 15 years.

Protecting Company Assets and Ensuring Business Success

Directors play a crucial role in protecting company assets and ensuring business success. This includes implementing asset protection strategies and fostering collaboration further information, and communication among the directors and other stakeholders.

In addition, directors must be aware of the legal implications and consequences of their actions, such as a breach of fiduciary duties and personal liability.

Asset Protection Strategies

To safeguard company assets, directors can employ various asset protection strategies, such as forming trusts, limited liability companies, and transferring property ownership to limited companies.

Additionally, obtaining insurance policies, like liability insurance, can provide a safety net for the company in the event of lawsuits or claims.

Financial planning strategies, such as utilizing retirement accounts, can also contribute to asset protection.

Fostering Collaboration and Communication

Promoting honest and open communication is vital in resolving director disputes and ensuring the company’s success.

Strategies to cultivate a company culture of open communication include striving for transparency, scheduling one-on-one meetings, providing consistent feedback, and utilizing digital business collaboration tools.

Encouraging creativity, swiftly resolving conflicts, and promoting bottom-up communication can also contribute to a healthy and collaborative working environment.

Legal Implications and Consequences for Directors

The legal landscape surrounding director disputes over liquidation is complex, and the implications and consequences for directors will vary depending on the circumstances.

Directors must be aware of their fiduciary duties, as breaches of certain duties can result in both civil and criminal liability, including compensation for lost profits and the recoupment of profits earned by the director.

It is important for directors to understand the legal implications of their actions and to take steps to ensure that they are acting in the best interests of the company.

This includes understanding the legal requirements for liquidation and the potential legal costs for liquidation.

Breach of Fiduciary Duties

A breach of fiduciary duties can have serious legal repercussions for directors. These duties, outlined in the Companies Act 2006, require directors to act in a manner that is beneficial to the company and ensure that their own interests are not prioritised over the companies.

If a director breaches their fiduciary duties, the company or its liquidators may be eligible to seek compensation for any resulting losses.

Personal Liability

Directors must also be aware of the potential implications of personal liability, which can include financial penalties, legal action, and personal bankruptcy.

Forming a limited liability company, obtaining insurance, and seeking professional advice are viable strategies for mitigating personal liability.

Seeking Professional Advice and Support

In navigating director disputes over liquidation, seeking professional advice and support is invaluable.

Experienced advisors and solicitors can provide guidance on legal matters, access to expertise, and assistance in finding the right solution for the specific circumstances of the dispute.

Benefits of Professional Advice

Professional advice offers numerous advantages, such as specialized knowledge, a different viewpoint, and the capacity to avert expensive errors and lessen potential legal or financial risks.

It can also suggest enhancements and facilitate the attainment of objectives, resulting in a more promising future with an array of possibilities.

Finding the Right Advisor or Solicitor

When searching for the right advisor or solicitor to address a director dispute, carefully evaluate their expertise in handling similar cases and their success rate.

Seeking advice from trusted sources, such as friends or colleagues, and exploring online reviews of commercial litigation solicitors, can be beneficial in finding the right professional to help resolve the dispute.


In conclusion, director disputes over liquidation are complex and require careful consideration of the company and other directors’ interests, legal implications, and potential consequences.

By understanding the available options, implementing effective dispute resolution and strategies to avoid conflicts, and seeking professional advice, directors can navigate these disputes and work towards a satisfactory resolution that preserves the company’s assets and ensures its continued success.

Remember, the entire future of the company and the well-being of its stakeholders depend on the ability of directors to collaborate and make informed business decisions.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens to a director when a company goes into liquidation?

When a company enters liquidation, the director’s role hands responsibility and authority over another director will come to an end.

They must cooperate with the appointed liquidator or receiver, and they are prevented from forming any business with the same name for five years.

It is important to ensure compliance with all regulations during this process.

Does directorship cease on liquidation?

Directorship typically ceases on liquidation. Upon liquidation of the new company, the former company director whose duties and responsibilities to the company comes to an end and they can no longer manage or influence the company’s affairs.

Additionally, if a company is in compulsory liquidation or creditors’ voluntary liquidation, the director will be banned for 5 years from forming, managing or promoting any new business, with the same or similar name as their liquidated company.

What powers do liquidators have against directors?

Liquidators have the power to take legal action against directors, including filing claims for breach of fiduciary duty, fraudulent trading and wrongful trading.

This ensures that any wrongdoings by directors are swiftly addressed and held accountable.

Ultimately, liquidation can provide justice to those affected.

What is the director’s duty to cooperate with the liquidator?

As a director of a limited company, it is your legal obligation to cooperate with the liquidator by providing any records, documents and information that they request.

This helps them to carry out their statutory duties in assessing the financial position of the company accurately and efficiently.

Information For Company Directors

Here are some other informative articles for company directors in the UK:

Areas We Cover

About Insolvency Practitioner

We are Insolvency Practitioners based in Barking who are dedicated to providing expert solutions for financial distress.

Contact Us