This blog focuses on two practical considerations that should be borne in mind when dealing with an estate where there are any suspicions that the value of the assets when realised may be insufficient to meet all debts and liabilities in full.
The recent case of The Official Receiver v Andrew Nathaniel Skeene and Junie Conrad Omari Bowers  EWHC 1252 (Ch) (“Skeene”) is a good example of the crossover between insolvency related proceedings and criminal proceedings. In this case, the High Court considered the Official Receiver’s (“OR”) ability to disclose to the Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”) documents which had been obtained by the OR during the course of disqualification proceedings.
Interviews are frequently conducted by office-holders with individuals previously involved with an insolvent company, such as directors and officers, employees, accountants, lawyers and other third parties. Such interviews will often provide key information regarding the company’s trading and dealings and the actions of its directors and employees, thereby assisting office-holders seeking to investigate potential fraud, misfeasance and other forms of misconduct.
Third parties are often caught (innocently or not) in the cross hairs of office holders seeking information and/or documents on the asset and liability position of a company in order to fulfil their functions properly and their duties to the creditors.