Clause 725

Company Law Reform Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 12:45 pm on 4th July 2006.

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Defective delivery

Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Jonathan Djanogly Jonathan Djanogly Shadow Minister (Business, Innovation and Skills), Shadow Solicitor General, Shadow Minister (Justice)

I am not sure what the purpose of subsection (1) is. It says that a document is not delivered unless other things are done, which are set out separately, but is that not stating the obvious and repetitive?

Photo of Vera Baird Vera Baird Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs

When the registrar receives documents she has to decide whether to make the information  contained in them available for public inspection. The clause clarifies her powers in that area and ensures that the registrar has the power to omit from the register any or all of the information contained in a document that does not meet the necessary requirements. Examples of that could be information that is not sent in conformity with the rules, in a form or manner of delivery that is not properly authenticated, or where the necessary fee has not been paid. The registrar will still be able to accept and register such a document at her discretion, but by accepting it she will not be exempting the person who is filing it from any consequence that might attach to their failure to comply with the original requirements for delivery.

Taken together, the elements of the clause provide a sensible framework for ensuring that defective material does not get accepted and placed on the public register, and that there is appropriate discipline on companies to ensure that they file documents in the correct way—that is surely the main point—while providing a degree of discretion to the registrar in cases of genuine doubt.

Photo of Jonathan Djanogly Jonathan Djanogly Shadow Minister (Business, Innovation and Skills), Shadow Solicitor General, Shadow Minister (Justice)

Although I maintain that the clause is repetitive, I accept what the Minister said, in terms of setting a framework for someone to have easier access round the Bill than they might have otherwise.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 725 ordered to stand part of the Bill.