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My pub needs to go into liquidation

The pub industry is no stranger to challenges, from rising costs to a volatile market.

Pub owners must navigate these hurdles while ensuring the survival and success of their businesses.

Understanding liquidation options, such as Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation (CVL) and Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), is crucial for pub owners facing financial difficulties.

Pub owners can protect their interests and navigate insolvency with confidence by understanding Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation (CVL) and Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA).

Seeking independent advice from an experienced insolvency practitioner is essential for pub owners considering liquidation.

Alternative solutions to liquidation, such as restructuring and refinancing, emergency funding or formal rescue procedures, may help maintain the viability of pubs.

In some cases, “My pub needs to go into liquidation” might be a thought that crosses your mind.

This blog post navigates the complexities and costs of liquidation, emphasizes the importance of professional advice, and explores alternatives, empowering your decisions for your pub business.

Understanding Liquidation Options for Pubs

Pub owners must be well-versed in liquidation options in order to successfully navigate the intricate and often precarious process of insolvency.

Two primary options are available: Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation (CVL) and Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA).

By understanding these options, pub and bar owners can protect their business loans give people spending their interests more control and traverse the pub and bar sector with confidence.

Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation

Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation (CVL) is a formal company liquidation procedure where the company’s assets are liquidated and the proceeds are distributed to creditors according to a predetermined order of priority.

CVL comes into play when a company is unable to meet its financial or legal obligations, and there is no practical chance of restoring the situation.

Engaging in CVL allows publicans to manage their situation, address corporate liabilities, and meet their statutory duties as company directors while adhering to applicable regulations.

Insolvency practitioners play a vital role in guiding company directors through the CVL process, ensuring it is conducted in an orderly manner.

Company Voluntary Arrangement

A Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) is a legally binding agreement between an indebted company and its creditors, which allows for a reduction in monthly debt payments while providing creditors with a better chance of recovering a portion of the amount owed.

A CVA is suitable when a company is facing financial difficulties but is still considered viable in the long run.

To execute a CVA, at least 75% of creditors (by value) must approve the arrangement and the proposed repayment amount.

However, it is important to note that defaulting on CVA payments may lead eligible businesses to insolvency.

Assessing Your Pub’s Financial Situation

Before considering liquidation options, it is essential for pub owners to assess their financial situation using an insolvency test.

This test is a crucial tool in evaluating a pub business’s financial position and determining whether it is insolvent. It provides pub business owners with a clear understanding of their financial standing.

Insolvency Test

The insolvency test evaluates whether a company is unable to fulfil its financial obligations as they become due or if its liabilities exceed its assets.

There are two main tests for insolvency: the balance sheet test and the cash flow test. The balance sheet test examines if a company’s liabilities exceed its assets, while the cash flow test assesses if a company’s debts can meet its financial obligations as they become due.

By employing the insolvency test, pub owners can gain a better understanding of their financial situation and make informed decisions regarding liquidation options.

Seeking Professional Advice for Liquidation

When considering liquidation, it is crucial for pub owners to seek professional advice from an experienced insolvency practitioner.

These practitioners with extensive experience can provide invaluable guidance in determining the most suitable course of action for the pub business, whether it be CVL, CVA, or an alternative solution.

Delaying action when the company administration considering liquidation could result in a creditor-led liquidation, potentially leading to investigations by the Official Receiver.

Finding the Right Insolvency Practitioner

When selecting an insolvency practitioner for your pub, it is important to evaluate their qualifications and experience, as well as their fees and the services they provide.

Insolvency practitioners should have a comprehensive understanding of the legal and financial aspects of pub liquidations, and you can research practitioners on the websites of professional associations or regulatory bodies such as the Insolvency Practitioners Association (IPA) and R3.

You should also consider the practitioner’s reputation and track record, as well as any feedback from previous clients.

It is important to ensure that the practitioner is qualified and experienced in the type of insolvency you are dealing with. Finally, make sure you are safe.

Director Responsibilities and Personal Guarantees in Liquidation

In the event of liquidation, directors of pubs are responsible for any outstanding debts and may be held liable for personal guarantees.

Personal guarantees are contractual commitments to repay corporate debt with individual or other personal assets. If applicable in certain circumstances, lenders may pursue other personal assets used to settle outstanding debt.

Managing Personal Guarantees

A personal guarantee is a legally binding obligation, evidenced in writing and signed by the guarantor, to repay a third party’s debt or borrowing.

Signing a personal guarantee may result in the guarantor assuming personal liability for the debt or borrowing, which is why it is essential to be aware of the implications of signing a personal guarantee and obtaining independent professional advice when necessary.

Pub owners should consult an insolvency practitioner to gain an understanding of their available options for managing personal guarantees in liquidation.

Redundancy Pay for Pub Directors and Employees

To be eligible for director redundancy and pay scheme and employee redundancy pay in pub businesses, individuals must have a minimum of two years of employment with a contract and a minimum of 16 hours per week in a hands-on role.

The average director redundancy pays claim in pub and hospitality businesses alone is £9,000.

Claiming Redundancy Pay

To claim redundancy pay, one must have been laid off without pay or less than half a week’s pay, and the deadline for claiming is six months minus a day from the last day of employment. Redundancy pay is calculated according to one’s age and length of service.

If your employer is insolvent, you may be able to make a claim through the government.

Alternative Solutions to Liquidation

Liquidation is not the only option for pubs facing financial difficulties. Alternative solutions include restructuring and refinancing, emergency funding, or formal rescue procedures such as CVA, company administration, or Time to Pay.

These options can help pub and bar owners to avoid the complications of liquidation while maintaining the viability of their businesses.

Restructuring and Refinancing

Restructuring involves renegotiating the terms of an existing loan, while refinancing involves replacing an old loan with a new one.

A licensed insolvency practitioner can help pub landlords evaluate whether it’s viable to rescue a pub business from insolvency’ through a restructuring strategy. Popular insolvent’ strategies include Fast Track CVA and the administration process.

By exploring these options, pub owners can alleviate financial pressures on viable pub businesses and work towards a more viable pub business and sustainable future for more customers and their businesses.

Emergency Funding Options

Emergency funding can be a lifeline for pubs facing financial difficulties. Although specific funding options are not explicitly mentioned in the knowledge base.

Pub, business owners and businesses themselves can explore other various business loans options such as business loans or other business investment capital to keep their businesses afloat.

Another potential solution for pubs facing financial difficulties is pre-pack administration, a process in which a company organises the sale of its assets to a new company.

Which then continues the operations of the business. Pre-pack administration can potentially avert business closure and safeguard employees’ positions.


In conclusion, understanding liquidation options, seeking professional advice, and exploring alternative solutions are all crucial steps for pub owners facing financial difficulties.

By assessing their financial situation, engaging with experienced insolvency practitioners, and considering options such as restructuring, refinancing, or emergency funding, pub owners can navigate the challenges of the pub industry and work towards a brighter future for their businesses.

The journey through insolvency may be complex, but it is not insurmountable – with the right guidance and determination, pub owners can overcome these hurdles and thrive.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens when a pub goes into liquidation?

When a pub goes into liquidation, the pub closes its doors permanently and appoints a professional insolvency practitioner to act as a liquidator.

They are then responsible for managing the sale of the pub and other pub business assets, realising proceeds to creditors, and deregistering the pub and bar sector businesses for business with Companies House.

What happens if I put my business into liquidation?

Putting your business into liquidation will result in the company being removed from the official register at Companies House.

The liquidator will take control of the company’s affairs, dispose of its assets and, after all, costs and expenses are paid, distribute any remaining money left over to the creditors.

This will put an end to the company’s debts and all business operations.

What is the cheapest way to liquidate a company?

The most cost-effective way to liquidate a company is by self-funding it.

This involves selling the company’s assets and using the proceeds to pay off creditors and Insolvency Practitioners in order of priority. This allows insolvent you limited companies to complete the liquidation process cheaply.

How do you put a business in liquidation?

To put a company liquidation or a business in voluntary liquidation either, the company directors and the company director shareholders must pass a resolution to wind up the company and appoint an authorised insolvency practitioner as a liquidator.

The liquidator must then assess the company’s assets and liabilities in order to prepare a statement for liquidation proceedings.

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