On 23 March 2020, Insolvency and Companies Court Judge Mullen set out the Court’s emergency response to managing winding up hearings during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Upon considering the current situation it was decided that the general winding up list cannot presently be conducted remotely. The court ordered, by the courts own motion, that existing winding-up petitions should be adjourned to ensure the safety of all. Existing petitions were adjourned in blocks to future dates ranging from 17 June to 5 August 2020.
The court also gave permission to any party to seek dismissal of a petition before the adjourned hearing takes place. Such applications must be made by notice to the other party and to any party intending to appear and must be supported by evidence, clearly stating the reasons of dismissal and setting out details of persons who indicated an intention to appear. Such applications will be listed in a general dismissal list, which will be conducted remotely by video conferencing technology, such as Skype.
The above order does not preclude a petitioner from withdrawing a petition where notice of the petition has not been given and no notice in support or opposition has been received. Applications to withdraw will be most likely granted on paper.
For further information and list of adjourned hearings, visit https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/court-lists/list-companies-winding-up.
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