Insolvency Service probes fall by 40%
5th September 2011
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Tim Corfield, Managing Director of Midlands based Insolvency Practitioners Griffin & King comments on recent accounts issued by the Insolvency Service. 

The number of investigations launched by the Insolvency Service has fallen by 40% - a drop the agency has blamed on budget cuts of 11%.

The Service’s full year accounts for the twelve month to April 2011 show its Company Investigations Unit commenced 180 cases in this period, compared to 295 in 2009 – 2010.

The news follows concerns that a lack of resources will reduce the Service’s capacity to investigate rouge company directors.

The accounts state: “This decrease is a consequence of 11% cuts which reduced the amount available to outsource some investigation work, and the replacing of experienced non-permanent workers with permanent staff from other areas of the service last autumn.  Towards the end of the financial year the impending departure of a number of investigators under voluntary exit scheme also impacted on the number of cases commenced.”

According to the accounts, the service received 4,852 complaints about limited companies in the past year.  Some 564 came during the first quarter of 2011, from the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills and the Serious Organised Crime Agency. 

Although only 180 investigations were started on the back of the accounts include details of convictions from old cases.  They show that 166 defendants received convictions for corporate and personal insolvency related offences and 99 defendants were dealt custodial sentences of up to six years.

Some 53 disqualification orders were dealt out to directors, ranging from twelve months to the maximum fifteen years, while 15 confiscation orders were made for items worth more than £217,000.

Tim Corfield comments:  “This information confirms what Insolvency Practitioners are experiencing from directors’ conduct reports submitted to the Insolvency Service following the insolvency of a company.”

Griffin & King are planning their next networking events on 1st and 8th November and a presentation will also be given by Tim on certain aspects of insolvency. If you are interested in attending this please click here to email Janet Peacock.

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