Summary

The court was prepared to provide for immediate release of administrators from office and to wind up a company without presentation of a petition.

The Facts

Administrators applied to court for their release, the winding up of the company and their appointment as liquidators.

The company’s remaining asset was a leasehold interest with an ultimate landlord, the immediate landlord having surrendered its interest.

The company was in breach of various lease provisions and the landlord was not prepared to assign the lease to a purchaser, nor surrender the lease. The administrators were therefore unable to realise any value for the lease nor disclaim it.

As there were no other assets to realise and the secured creditor was no longer prepared to fund the administration, the administrators contended that the statutory purpose could no longer be achieved and applied to court to wind up the company and be appointed as liquidators so that they could disclaim the lease.

Decision

In advance of the application the administrators had written to all creditors informing them of their intentions and that they would be seeking immediate (rather than the usual 28 day period) release. No creditor came forward and the Judge agreed that it was right to issue the application to bring the administration to an end as it appeared that the statutory purpose was now unachievable.

The Judge was also prepared to immediately release the administrators from liability as no creditor had come forward on that issue either and to make a winding up order, notwithstanding that there was no winding up petition before the court.

Comment

This decision demonstrates clear authority for administrators to obtain immediate release and a winding up order without the need to present, serve and advertise a winding petition, where creditors are fully appraised of the situation and raise no objection.