The cost of disputes?

Picture this.  There are two directors – one responsible for the day-to-day operations of the business while the other managed all contractual matters and the bookkeeping.  A dispute arises between the directors, trust rapidly dissipates and accusations start flying.

The above is not an all too untypical scenario PBC have witnessed, whether that is while using our mediation services or a precursor to the company entering into an insolvency event, usually as a result of the management dispute being irreconcilable.

The courts will show little (if any) remorse towards a director who demonstrates a failure to meet their statutory duties as they adopt the stance that duties prevail over any personal feelings or negative impact meeting those duties may cause.  The latest demonstration of the court’s views was on 8 March 2024 when, in the case of Manfuku London Ltd and Cocoro Restaurants Limited [2024] EWHC 457 (Ch) the court held a director personally liable for costs.

The main issue in the above case was surrounding access to company records, held by one of the directors but also had wider disputes including allegations of theft.  The court refused to consider the wider disputes and ordered for the records to be delivered up, as these could be easily produced. 

The key message, here, is should a management dispute arise, take advice at the earliest opportunity.   Not seeking that early resolution can be very costly on several levels.

If you need any advice or assistance on a management dispute or any corporate restructuring or insolvency-related issue, then please contact PBC Business Recovery & Insolvency to discuss your situation on 01604 212150 (Northampton), 01908 488653 (Milton Keynes) or email to Alternatively, visit for further information.

Winding up is the solution, right?

Woman sitting at desk using a mouse.

Pay or we will look at winding you up.  This is a threat that many debt collectors and credit controllers use as a means of persuading an errant debtor to pay.  However, at PBC we ask if those threatening such action appreciate the impact of winding up proceedings, both practically and in terms of petition costs that could be in the region of £6-8,000.

Before a petitioner can seek to recover their petition costs as a liquidation expense, the statutory fees must be fully repaid.  These include the official receiver’s fixed administration and general fees of £5,000 and £6,000 respectively.  Equally, the official receiver shall levy a 15% fee on any assets they realise.

In a recent report from the Insolvency Service an average of 10% of all compulsory liquidations over the past 5 years resulted in the official receiver fees being fully covered.  There can be many reasons for this but, ultimately it is suggesting in 90% of compulsory liquidations, the petitioner is writing off the petition costs they have paid out in addition to their original debt. 

There are times where winding up proceedings are justified.  However, a petitioner should also be aware of (and open to) the alternatives that are available.  This maybe creditors voluntary liquidation, where a wider degree of commercial thinking is often employed.  It could also be some form of restructuring that benefits creditors as a whole.  Often, the likes of a company voluntary arrangement will provide to repay the petition costs as an expense while the CVA, itself, offers a better return on your principal debt.

It goes without saying that everyone wishes to be paid for their services or goods supplied.  However, when a company is likely to enter into an insolvency event, reality turns on the question how do I  maximise recovery and does any alternative option being made available achieve that?

If you require any advice or assistance on any insolvency-related issue, then please contact PBC Business Recovery & Insolvency to discuss your situation on 01604 212150 (Northampton), 01908 488653 (Milton Keynes) or email to  Alternatively, visit for further information.