HomeFWJ takeawayTakeawayWinding up petitionsPublic interest winding up petitionsWinding up a company in the public interest

Our expert team regularly defend public interest winding up petitions and can help get them dismissed from court. If a company has been wound up in the public interest, our team can help defend any director disqualification proceedings which will inevitably follow. Let our team help you avoid the worst consequences of a public interest petition.

It will be up to the court to decide whether or not to make a winding up order following the presentation of a winding up petition, and the burden of proof is with the Secretary of State to persuade the court that it is just and equitable for the company to be wound up.

The full text of Section 124A of the Insolvency Act 1986 reads as follows:

“124 A Petition for winding up on grounds of public interest.

(1) Where it appears to the Secretary of State from—

(a) any report made or information obtained under Part XIV of the Companies Act 1985 (company investigations, &c.),

(b) any report made by inspectors under—

(i) section 167, 168, 169 or 284 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, or

(ii) where the company is an open-ended investment company (within the meaning of that Act), regulations made as a result of section 262(2)(k) of that Act;

(bb) any information or documents obtained under section 165, 171, 172, 173 or 175 of that Act,

(c) any information obtained under section 2 of the Criminal Justice Act 1987 or section 28 of the Criminal Law (Consolidation) (Scotland) Act 1995 (fraud investigations), or

(d) any information obtained under section 83 of the Companies Act 1989 (powers exercisable for purpose of assisting overseas regulatory authorities),

that it is expedient in the public interest that a company should be wound up, he may present a petition for it to be wound up if the court thinks it just and equitable for it to be so.

(2) This section does not apply if the company is already being wound up by the court.”


Francis Wilks & Jones is the county’s leading firm of public interest winding up petition solicitors. We are genuine experts in what we do. If the Secretary of State has presented a public interest winding up petition against your company, we are the experts for you. Our knowledge of the relevant winding up petition legislation combined with our day to day experience and team of experts makes us the go to firm for sound commercial advice.

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