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New Clause 16 — Names and addresses of members of companies: company application

Part of Orders of the Day – in the House of Commons at 4:45 pm on 18th October 2006.

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Photo of Mike O'Brien Mike O'Brien Solicitor General, Law Officers' Department 4:45 pm, 18th October 2006

I note what the right hon. and learned Gentleman says.

Amendment No. 383 would give every shareholder of a quoted or publicly traded company the right for their home address not be publicly available either through the company or Companies House. That is simply not necessary. There is no requirement for the home address of any member of any company to be publicly available anywhere. All that clause 113 requires is

"the names and addresses of the members".

That is the same as the current requirement in section 352 of the Companies Act 1985. The Bill makes it clear elsewhere that an address for service, such as a PO box, is all that is required. We are talking about something for the purpose of communicating with the member and a way in which the member can be easily contacted. That is the objective of the exercise. In any event, a large and increasing proportion of individual investors in quoted companies and publicly traded companies hold their shareholdings through nominees so their names and addresses do not appear in the register at all.