At the instigation of the registrar

Can a company be struck-off without the knowledge of the members or directors?

Yes it can. The Registrar may strike-off a company that he believes is not in business or operation. He usually forms this opinion because the company does not submit accounts, an annual return or other documents, and because it ignores communications from him. It is often done because a company moves away from its registered office and neglects to inform Companies House on form AD01, with the result that communications from the Registrar are not received.

What steps does the Registrar take before deciding to strike-off a company?

The steps to a striking-off at the instigation of the Registrar are as follows:

1. The Registrar will write to the company at its last notified registered office. This letter will enquire if the company is still in business or operation. If no response is received or documents filed, the Registrar will send a second letter by registered post. He will also write to each director at their last notified residential addresses.

If no response is received, the Registrar will publish a notice in the Gazette giving notice of his intention to strike-off the company.

The Registrar will place a copy of this notice on the company's file at Companies House. This warns any enquirer of his intention.

The Registrar will consider any representations that may be received. These may be from the company, its officers, creditors or anyone at all.

Not less than three months after placing the notice on the company's file at Companies House, the Registrar may strike- off the company.

I am a director of an active company that has just been struck-off by the Registrar. Am I right to be angry?

The Registrar could have made a mistake but it is not likely. So no, you should not be angry. Apologetic would be more appropriate. You presumably missed sending in at least one annual return and ignored at least one reminder. You presumably missed sending in at least one set of accounts and ignored progressive notifications of civil penalties. You also ignored two specific warnings to the company from the Registrar and a warning sent to your last notified residential address. Very probably you did not receive these reminders, notices and warnings to the company because you have moved away from your registered office, but that is not the Registrar's fault. You can hardly blame him for forming the opinion that the company is no longer in business or operation.

I am (or was) a director of a company that was struck-off even though it is still trading. What should I do?

An application may be made to the Registrar to have the company restored to the register. The application must be made by a former director or a former member. All outstanding documents must be delivered to the Registrar and all outstanding penalties must be paid. There are further conditions and it is also possible to make application to the court.

During what period may an application be made to have a company restored to the register that was struck-off at the instigation of the Registrar?

Six years.

My company has been struck-off. Are officers of the company released from their liabilities?