Insolvency Act 1986

216 Restriction on re-use of company names.E+W+S

(1)This section applies to a person where a company (“the liquidating company”) has gone into insolvent liquidation on or after the appointed day and he was a director or shadow director of the company at any time in the period of 12 months ending with the day before it went into liquidation.

(2)For the purposes of this section, a name is a prohibited name in relation to such a person if—

(a)it is a name by which the liquidating company was known at any time in that period of 12 months, or

(b)it is a name which is so similar to a name falling within paragraph (a) as to suggest an association with that company.

(3)Except with leave of the court or in such circumstances as may be prescribed, a person to whom this section applies shall not at any time in the period of 5 years beginning with the day on which the liquidating company went into liquidation—

(a)be a director of any other company that is known by a prohibited name, or

(b)in any way, whether directly or indirectly, be concerned or take part in the promotion, formation or management of any such company, or

(c)in any way, whether directly or indirectly, be concerned or take part in the carrying on of a business carried on (otherwise than by a company) under a prohibited name.

(4)If a person acts in contravention of this section, he is liable to imprisonment or a fine, or both.

(5)In subsection (3) “the court” means any court having jurisdiction to wind up companies; and on an application for leave under that subsection, the Secretary of State or the official receiver may appear and call the attention of the court to any matters which seem to him to be relevant.

(6)References in this section, in relation to any time, to a name by which a company is known are to the name of the company at that time or to any name under which the company carries on business at that time.

(7)For the purposes of this section a company goes into insolvent liquidation if it goes into liquidation at at time when its assets are insufficient for the payment of its debts and other liabilities and the expenses of the winding up.

(8)In this section “company” includes a company which may be wound up under Part V of this Act.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C2S. 216 applied (with modifications) (17.2.2009 for certain purposes, otherwise 21.2.2009) by Banking Act 2009 (c. 1), ss. 103, 263(1)(2) (with s. 247); S.I. 2009/296, arts. 2, 3, Sch. para. 2

C3S. 216 applied (with modifications) (8.7.2021) by The Payment and Electronic Money Institution Insolvency Regulations 2021 (S.I. 2021/716), regs. 2, 37 (with reg. 5) (as amended (4.1.2024) by S.I. 2023/1399, regs. 1(2), 4, 11)