The Companies Act 2014 (‘2014 Act’) came into effect on 1 June 2015. Sections 633 and 634 of the 2014 Act now provide a statutory regime governing qualifications for appointment as a liquidator or provisional liquidator.
A person, in order to qualify for appointment as a liquidator of a company, must fall within one of five qualifying categories set out in the Table to Section 633 of the 2014 Act. While the majority of liquidators are likely to fall into category 1 (i.e. accountants) or category 2 (i.e. solicitors), IAASA now has responsibility to consider for authorisation those individuals falling within category 5.
To be authorised, such individuals will be required to make an application to IAASA within two years from 1 June 2015. IAASA is currently in the process of designing a registration and authorisation system and will engage in a public consultation on this in the coming weeks.
For reference, a summary of the five qualifying categories referred to above are:
- Category 1: The person must be a member of a prescribed accountancy body and hold a current practicing certificate from that body and is not prohibited by the rules of that body from acting as a liquidator.
- Category 2: The person must be a practicing solicitor and hold a current practicing certificate from the Law Society of Ireland under the Solicitors Acts 1954 to 2002 and is not prohibited from acting as a liquidator.
- Category 3 The person is a member of a professional body recognised by the Irish Auditing and Accounting Supervisory Authority (IAASA) and, is authorised for the time being by that professional body to pursue the activity and is not prohibited by the rules of that body from acting as a liquidator.
- Category 4 The person qualified under the laws of another EEA state to act as a liquidator in insolvency proceedings and the qualifications held entitles him or her to act as a liquidator in the State.
- Category 5 The person has practical experience of winding-up a company, has knowledge of the relevant law, and has been authorised by IAASA, in consultation with the ODCE, to be authorised as a fit and proper person to act as a liquidator.
Any individuals with an interest in the relevant provisions of the 2014 Act are advised to register for updates.
Affected individuals are strongly urged to seek their own legal advice on the implications of the relevant provisions concerning qualifications for appointment as a liquidator or provisional liquidator for them.