What is a Director’s Conduct Report During Liquidation?

A Directors’ Conduct Report[1]Trusted Source – GOV.UK – The Insolvent Companies (Reports on Conduct of Directors) (England and Wales) Rules 2016 is a mandatory, confidential document prepared by an insolvency practitioner during a company’s liquidation or administration and submitted to the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform.

As per Section 7A of the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, it assesses the conduct of the company’s directors in the period leading up to the insolvency, with the aim of identifying any potential wrongdoing and ensuring directors are held accountable for their actions[2]Trusted Source – GOV.UK – Director Conduct Reporting Service.

This report is vital for directors and the broader business community. It assesses responsibility and, where necessary, initiates further action against directors who may have failed in their duties.


What is Contained in a Director’s Conduct Report?

A Directors’ Conduct Report typically contains the following information:

  • A list of all directors, shadow directors, and de-facto directors of the company during the three years prior to the insolvency date, including their personal details and period as director
  • The insolvency practitioner’s opinion on whether any of the directors’ conduct makes them unfit to be concerned in the management of a company
  • If unfit conduct is identified, details of the specific matters of unfitness for each relevant director, along with supporting evidence
  • Information about the company’s financial situation, including:
    • Reasons for failure and deficiency
    • Estimated deficiency amount
    • Value of assets and liabilities
    • Likelihood of dividend to creditors
  • Details of the company’s books and records, including their completeness and sufficiency
  • Any other relevant matters, such as civil or criminal proceedings against directors, connected companies, or personal circumstances of directors

The report is submitted to the Insolvency Service within 3 months of the insolvency date and is supported by various enclosures, such as statements of affairs, accounts, questionnaires completed by directors, and evidence of unfit conduct (if applicable).

What’s the Directors Investigation Process During Insolvency?

The directors’ investigation process typically involves the following steps:

  1. Information gathering: The IP will collect and review relevant documents, such as financial records, board minutes, and correspondence, to gain a comprehensive understanding of the company’s affairs and the directors’ actions. Much of this goes into the Statement of Affairs document.
  2. Director interviews: The IP will interview the directors to obtain explanations and clarifications regarding the company’s financial position, decision-making processes, and any potential misconduct.
  3. Reporting to the Insolvency Service: If the IP uncovers evidence of wrongdoing, such as fraudulent trading, misfeasance, or wrongful trading, they are obligated to report their findings to the Insolvency Service.
  4. Further investigation: Based on the IP’s report, the Insolvency Service may conduct further investigations and gather additional evidence to determine if director disqualification proceedings or other legal actions are warranted.

Throughout the investigation process, directors are required to cooperate fully with the IP and provide all requested information and documentation. Failure to do so can result in serious consequences, including being held in contempt of court.

>>Read our full article on Insolvent Company Investigations

How Long Does the Insolvency Service Have to Respond?

The Insolvency Service has a two-year time frame to proceed if they feel there is a reasonable case for director disqualification. A good deal of that timeframe will be spent collecting evidence and contacting the relevant company directors to ensure their information is verifiable.

What Are the Potential Consequences of a Director’s Report in Liquidation?

The director’s report has significant implications for all stakeholders involved, affecting the directors personally, the company’s creditors, and the overall outcome of the liquidation process.

Potential consequences are as follows:

  • Director Liability: If the report reveals that directors engaged in wrongful trading, they may be held personally liable for the company’s debts. This could lead to financial penalties, compensation orders, or even personal bankruptcy in severe cases.
  • Disqualification: The findings can lead to director disqualification for a period ranging from 2 to 15 years under the Company Directors Disqualification Act, (CDDA) 1986. Disqualification prevents an individual from acting as a director of any company, imposing a significant restriction on their professional activities and reputation.
  • Criminal Proceedings: Directors may face criminal charges in cases of fraudulent trading or serious breaches of duty, leading to fines or imprisonment. Such outcomes are more likely when there is evidence of intent to defraud creditors or other fraudulent activities.
  • Creditor Impact: The report can influence the distribution of assets to creditors. If it’s found that directors made preferential payments or undervalued transactions, creditors may receive a greater share of the assets or compensation through legal actions against the directors.

Get Expert Guidance on Directors Conduct Reports

If your company is facing insolvency and you’re concerned about the implications of the Directors Conduct Report, don’t hesitate to seek professional advice. Our experienced team can provide you with a free consultation to help you understand your situation confidentially and quickly.

For expert guidance, contact us today by phone at 0800 074 6757, email us at info@companydebt.com, or instantly connect with our team using the live chat feature at the bottom of the screen.

FAQs about the Directors Conduct Report in Liquidation

Directors should seek legal advice if they disagree with the report’s findings. They may have the opportunity to provide further evidence or clarification to the Insolvency Service or, if necessary, challenge the findings legally.

Yes, the actions of both current and former directors within a specific timeframe before the company’s insolvency are examined as part of the investigation.


The primary sources for this article are listed below, including the relevant laws and Acts which provide their legal basis.

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  1. Trusted Source – GOV.UK – The Insolvent Companies (Reports on Conduct of Directors) (England and Wales) Rules 2016
  2. Trusted Source – GOV.UK – Director Conduct Reporting Service