Re Cedac Ltd: CA 1991

The Secretary of State’s notice of intention to bring disqualification proceedings was served and the proceedings begun 10 days later just inside the 2 year limitation period specified by s 7(2) of the Act. Both parties believed the 10 day notice period had been complied with, and the director raised no objection at first. Following Jaymar, he objected to the short service.
Held: The court asked four questions: (1) What is the scope and purpose of the Act of 1986? (2) What is the importance of the 10-day notice requirement in section 16(1)? (3) What is the relation of that requirement to the general object intended to be secured by the Act of 1986? (4) What are the relevant circumstances of the present case? The Act was intended to protect the public, and the requirement was important, but a breach did not create an automatic nullity. The court could make an order without such formal notice, provided the principles of natural justice were followed. (Legatt LJ) ‘The notice here fulfils no such function (i.e. to protect the director): its importance in the proceedings is minimal, and no one has been able to point to any real benefit that the director may derive from it.’ The third question is a balancing exercise with the protection afforded to the director by the provision of the notice period being set against the need to protect the public. As to the fourth, in these circunstances there was no prejudice to the director.


Balcombe LJ, Leggatt LJ


[1991] Ch 402


Company Director Disqualification Act 1986 7(2) 16(1)


England and Wales


CitedRe Jaymar Management Ltd ChD 1990
The 10 day notice period before commencing proceedings had to be calculated exclusive of the day on which the notice was given and the day on which the proceedings were issued. . .

Cited by:

CitedThe Secretary of State for Trade and Industry v Swan and Othes ChD 22-Jul-2003
When commencing proceedings under the Act, the papers were defective. The secretary of state had failed to give appropriate notice, and thus prevented him from making representations as to the allegations. The allegations involved the manipulation . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Company, Administrative, Natural Justice

Updated: 06 May 2022; Ref: scu.185779