A court action had been raised in the name of a company without authority, giving rise to a possible liability in expenses to the defendants. One of the defendants claimed that, in the event that the company’s liquidator ratified the action, that liability would become a debt of the company, which would be related back to the beginning of the action.
Held: At the date when the question arose, prior to winding up, the possibility that the company would be liable to pay the expenses did not amount to a contingent debt, as it depended on ratification by the liquidator, if he chose to do so.
 1 WLR 799,  2 All ER 615
England and Wales
Helpful – In re Sutherland, dec’d; Winter v Inland Revenue Commissioners HL 1963
The concept of a contingent liability was considered.
Held: In Scots law, a contingent liability is a liability which, by reason of something done by the person bound, may or may not arise depending on the happening of a future event.
Cited – In re Nortel Companies and Others SC 24-Jul-2013
The court was asked as to the interrelationship of the statutory schemes relating to the protection of employees’ pensions and to corporate insolvency.
Held: Liabilities which arose from financial support directions or contribution notices . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 20 August 2021; Ref: scu.537711