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There are two different types of disqualification letters which anyone threatened with a claim should be aware of.

Preliminary letters and questionnaires

Often, director disqualification proceedings begin with letters from the Insolvency Service making enquiries about various aspects of the company which went into liquidation and the role of the officers in charge of that company.

  • these enquiries can seem quite innocuous and innocent at the outset but it is vital that good advice is taken in respect of these enquires;
  • otherwise, with the best of intentions, a director might say something which is unhelpful and which can later be used against him/her in director disqualification proceedings.

Often, those letters take the form of questionnaires whereby the ex-director is asked to answer various questions. It is vital that these documents are properly completed. Indeed, if you are unable to recollect the events which can sometime stretch back a number of years, then do ask for the relevant documentation to review. You should not be lured into a guessing game by the Insolvency Service.

Section 16 director disqualification letter

If the Secretary of State is likely to proceed with a director disqualification claim, it will first send what is known as a section 16 disqualification letter before issuing legal proceedings.

The section 16 letter is sent pursuant to section 16 of the Company Director disqualification Act 1986. It sets out the basis of the potential claim against the individual.

  • it will set out the matters which it believes renders the person unfit to be a director moving forward and should result in his/her director disqualification;
  • it will often include an offer of a director disqualification voluntary undertaking to the individual to be disqualified rather than face formal legal proceedings.

If you receive a Section 16 director disqualification letter, it is very important you take proper director disqualification legal advice with regard to it.

  • many ex-directors believe that they have no choice but to agree a voluntary director disqualification undertaking. This is not the case;
  • proper legal advice at this stage can lead to the threat of director disqualification proceedings being dropped entirely;

You should always take expert legal director disqualification advice if at all possible to try and avoid the threat of director disqualification proceedings or alternatively, to help negotiate downwards any voluntary director disqualification undertaking period which has been offered to you.


Our expert team of director disqualification solicitors at Francis Wilks & Jones are here to help you with any type of director disqualification enquiry. Contact one of our expert friendly director disqualification lawyers now for your confidential consultation. Whatever your director disqualification requirements, we can show you director disqualification examples of similar cases we have successfully assisted with.

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