Search Legislation

Companies Act 1948

What Version

 Help about what version
  • Latest available (Revised)
  • Original (As enacted)

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally enacted). This item of legislation is currently only available in its original format.

Reduction of Share Capital

66Special resolution for reduction of share capital

(1)Subject to confirmation by the court, a company limited by shares or a company limited by guarantee and having a share capital may, if so authorised by its articles, by special resolution reduce its share capital in any way, and in particular, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, may—

(a)extinguish or reduce the liability on any of its shares in respect of share capital not paid up; or

(b)either with or without extinguishing or reducing liability on any of its shares, cancel any paid-up share capital which is lost or unrepresented by available assets; or

(c)either with or without extinguishing or reducing liability on any of its shares, pay off any paid-up share capital which is in excess of the wants of the company;

and may, if and so far as is necessary, alter its memorandum by reducing the amount of its share capital and of its shares accordingly.

(2)A special resolution under this section is in this Act referred to as "a resolution for reducing share capital ".

67Application to court for confirming order, objections by creditors, and settlement of list of objecting creditors

(1)Where a company has passed a resolution for reducing share capital, it may apply to the court for an order confirming the reduction.

(2)Where the proposed reduction of share capital involves either diminution of liability in respect of unpaid share capital or the payment to any shareholder of any paid-up share capital, and in any other case if the court so directs, the following provisions shall have effect, subject nevertheless to the next following subsection:—

(a)every creditor of the company who at the date fixed by the court is entitled to any debt or claim which, if that date were the commencement of the winding up of the company, would be admissible in proof against the company, shall be entitled to object to the reduction;

(b)the court shall settle a list of creditors so entitled to object, and for that purpose shall ascertain, as far as possible without requiring an application from any creditor, the names of those creditors and the nature and amount of their debts or claims, and may publish notices fixing a day or days within which creditors not entered on the list are to claim to be so entered or are to be excluded from the right of objecting to the reduction;

(c)where a creditor entered on the list whose debt or claim is not discharged or has not determined does not consent to the reduction, the court may, if it thinks fit, dispense with the consent of that creditor, on the company securing payment of his debt or claim by appropriating, as the court may direct, the following amount:—

(i)if the company admits the full amount of the debt or claim, or, though not admitting it, is willing to provide for it, then the full amount of the debt or claim;

(ii)if the company does not admit and is not willing to provide for the full amount of the debt or claim, or if the amount is contingent or not ascertained, then an amount fixed by the court after the like inquiry and adjudication as if the company were being wound up by the court.

(3)Where a proposed reduction of share capital involves either the diminution of any liability in respect of unpaid share capital or the payment to any shareholder of any paid-up share capital, the court may, if, having regard to any special circumstances of the case, it thinks proper so to do, direct that subsection (2) of this section shall not apply as regards any class or any classes of creditors.

68Order confirming reduction and powers of court on making such order

(1)The court, if satisfied, with respect to every creditor of the company who under the last foregoing section is entitled to object to the reduction, that either his consent to the reduction has been obtained or his debt or claim has been discharged or has determined, or has been secured, may make an order confirming the reduction on such terms and conditions as it thinks fit.

(2)Where the court makes any such order, it may—

(a)if for any special reason it thinks proper so to do, make an order directing that the company shall, during such period, commencing on or at any time after the date of the order, as is specified in the order, add to its name as the last words thereof the words

and reduced; and

(b)make an order requiring the company to publish as the court directs the reasons for reduction or such other information in regard thereto as the court may think expedient with a view to giving proper information to the public, and, if the court thinks fit, the causes which led to the reduction.

(3)Where a company is ordered to add to its name the words

and reduced, those words shall, until the expiration of the period specified in the order, be deemed to be part of the name of the company.

69Registration of order and minute of reduction

(1)The registrar of companies, on production to him of an order of the court confirming the reduction of the share capital of a company, and the delivery to him of a copy of the order and of a minute approved by the court showing, with respect to the share capital of the company as altered by the order, the amount of the share capital, the number of shares into which it is to be divided, and the amount of each share, and the amount, if any, at the date of the registration deemed to be paid up on each share, shall register the order and minute.

(2)On the registration of the order and minute, and not before, the resolution for reducing share capital as confirmed by the order so registered shall take effect.

(3)Notice of the registration shall be published in such manner as the court may direct.

(4)The registrar shall certify under his hand the registration of the order and minute, and his certificate shall be conclusive evidence that all the requirements of this Act with respect to reduction of share capital have been complied with, and that the share capital of the company is such as is stated in the minute.

(5)The minute when registered shall be deemed to be substituted for the corresponding part of the memorandum, and shall be valid and alterable as if it had been originally contained therein.

(6)The substitution of any such minute as aforesaid for part of the memorandum of the company shall be deemed to be an alteration of the memorandum within the meaning of section twenty-five of this Act.

70Liability of members in respect of reduced shares

(1)In the case of a reduction of share capital, a member of the company, past or present, shall not be liable in respect of any share to any call or contribution exceeding in amount the difference, if any, between the amount of the share as fixed by the minute and the amount paid, or the reduced amount, if any, which is to be deemed to have been paid, on the share, as the case may be:

Provided that, if any creditor, entitled in respect of any debt or claim to object to the reduction of share capital, is, by reason of his ignorance of the proceedings for reduction, or of their nature and effect with respect to his claim, not entered on the list of creditors, and, after the reduction, the company is unable, within the meaning of the provisions of this Act with respect to winding up by the court, to pay the amount of his debt or claim, then—

(a)every person who was a member of the company at the date of the registration of the order for reduction and minute, shall be liable to contribute for the payment of that debt or claim an amount not exceeding the amount which he would have been liable to contribute if the company had commenced to be wound up on the day before the said date; and

(b)if the company is wound up, the court, on the application of any such creditor and proof of his ignorance as aforesaid, may, if it thinks fit, settle accordingly a list of persons so liable to contribute, and make and enforce calls and orders on the contributories settled on the list, as if they were ordinary contributories in a winding up.

(2)Nothing in this section shall affect the rights of the contributories among themselves.

71Penalty for concealing name of creditor, &c

If any officer of the company—

(a)wilfully conceals the name of any creditor entitled to object to the reduction; or

(b)wilfully misrepresents the nature or amount of the debt or claim of any creditor; or

(c)aids, abets or is privy to any such concealment or misrepresentation as aforesaid,

he shall be guilty of a misdemeanour.

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

You have chosen to open The Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act as a PDF

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act without Schedules

The Whole Act without Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act without Schedules as a PDF

The Whole Act without Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open the Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open the Whole Act without Schedules

The Whole Act without Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open Schedules only

The Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As Enacted or Made):The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was enacted or made. No changes have been applied to the text.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

More Resources

Use this menu to access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • correction slips

Click 'View More' or select 'More Resources' tab for additional information including:

  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • links to related legislation and further information resources