STOPPING A WUP: The real consequences of being served a winding up petition are serious for a company.
If a winding up petition does not get stopped, a series of legal events will begin.
In turn, that can disable the company’s ability to trade. As a rule, failing to find a solution results in the termination of the business.
But, there are several ways to cancel a winding up order – referred to as ‘liquidation‘. In most cases, a company can still trade if you apply to cancel the liquidation process.
The information below explains which form you need and what usually happens at a hearing. But, you will need a specific reason to ‘rescind a winding up order‘.
In most cases, the best reason to stop it would be if the company can pay its debts. But, it may also apply if you were unable to attend the original hearing. If an order gets served to your company, you have only 5 working days to make your application to the court.
The form to use is the ‘Insolvency act application notice‘ available on the HMRC form finder. After filling in ‘Form IAA‘ you should write a witness statement. This information gives details of the business assets and its debts.
In some cases, you will need to submit the document by postal methods. If so, use the court finder facility and send them to the same court that sent the winding up order. But, you can also stop a winding up petition online if it got sent by one of these courts:
- Admiralty and Commercial Court
- Chancery Division
- Companies Court
- High Court (including Bankruptcy Court)
- London Mercantile Court
- Rolls Building
After Applying for a Winding Up Order
Most applications get returned on the same day and it will inform you of the date for the hearing. As a rule, your hearing would take place within two weeks of the application.
You must ‘serve a copy of the application‘ to the ‘respondent‘ without delay. There are several ways to deliver it to the person who made the winding up petition. A copy must also go the official receiver as well.
Methods for delivering the application include:
- Handing it to the respondent (try all known addresses for them).
- Using a ‘process server‘ or solicitor to serve the application on your behalf.
Note: What happens if it cannot get hand delivered in person? You can use registered post to deliver the application or put it through a letterbox.
Fee to Stop a Winding Up Petition
The current fee to stop a winding up petition is £155. That is providing you go to one of the district registries or the Companies Court. But, the fees vary at some county courts. Thus, check with the court before applying.
Winding Up Hearing Procedure
A winding up hearing follows a set procedure. You and the other party (respondent) will both present your cases. They get presented to a registrar or to a district judge. It is an opportunity to explain your reason for wanting to stop the winding up order.
After the completion of the winding up hearing you will either:
- Get a decision: The court also sends a written copy of the decision to you.
- Get asked to attend another hearing: This happens if the judge or registrar wants extra evidence.
Note: In some cases you can appeal to the Chancery Division of the High Court if you disagree with a decision.