Landmark High Court decision on out of court appointments of Administrators

January 6, 2020

*First published 12 November 2019. Updated with link to the judgment transcript 6 January 2020.* 

In a judgment which disagreed with the very recent reported decisions of Re Skeggs Beef Limited [2019] EWHC 2607 (Ch) and Re SJ Henderson and Co Ltd [2019] EWHC 2742 (Ch), HHJ Hodge QC sitting as a Judge of the High Court found:

  1. Notices of Intention to Appoint Administrators can be filed at any time via e-filing and take effect at the time they are filed via e-filing.
  2. Directors or the Company can make out of hours appointments of Administrators by filing a Notice of Appointment at any time via e-filing. The appointment will take effect at the time the documents are filed via e-filing.
  3. That for the purposes of the computation of the period of 10 business days pursuant to para 28(2) of Sch.B1 of the Insolvency Act 1986, the first business day will be the business day after the date on which the Notice of Intention to Appoint was filed – thus it is a ‘clear days’ calculation.

Carly Sandbach appeared for the Applicant Joint Administrators and was instructed by Dan Clarke at Pannone Corporate.

Commenting on the judgment, Carly Sandbach said:

“The decision is of enormous significance to Insolvency Practitioners and those who appoint them. This is the latest in a series of High Court decisions in this area concerning the interplay between the e-filing regime and out of court appointments of Administrators. We wait to see whether this will be the last word on the matter, or whether an appellate decision or an amendment to the Practice Direction on Insolvency Proceedings will be needed to ultimately settle the question.”

To read the transcript of the judgment in full, please click here.