Every year, thousands of businesses are struck off the Companies House register, both by voluntary and enforced means.
Striking off refers to the process of removing a company’s name from the Companies House official register. Once this process is complete, the company name then becomes available for incorporation by a new company.
In order for a company to be struck off the register and dissolved, either an application needs to be submitted to the Registrar or the Registrar needs to deem the company as not in operation.
If a company wishes to be dissolved and struck off the Companies House register, the following requirements need to be met first.
If a company meets all the necessary criteria, it is then possible to complete a striking off application form (form DS01) which should be sent to Companies House.
In addition to sending the application forms to Companies House, within a week of making the application, copies must also be sent to all interested parties, such as HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), creditors, employees, etc.
If one of the interested parties chooses to make an objection, and the objection is upheld by Companies House, the company strike off procedure will be suspended.
The decision to strike off a company may be made by the Registrar and for a variety of reasons. The Registrar may strike off a company if it is deemed to be no longer in business or operation, perhaps because documents haven’t been received or mail is being returned as undelivered.
Before a company is struck off the Companies House register, it must first inquire as to whether the company is still in operation. If the Registrar is satisfied that the business can removed from the register, a notice of intention to strike off the company is placed in the London Gazette and a copy notice is added to the company’s public record.
Following the issuance of the notice, the Registrar will usually allow three months before the company is struck off.A further notice will be added to the London Gazette stating that the company is being dissolved.