Friday, 1 April 2016
The Hon Mr Justice Jack, sitting in the Supreme Court, has considered the operation of section 414 of the Companies Act 2014 in The Matter of Tasmania Investments Ltd (Claim No 2015, Comp 23; 23 March 2016): see here (pdf). Section 414 provides a means for companies that have been struck off the register under sections 411, 412 or 413 to be restored to the register by the Registrar of Companies. At issue was whether the Registrar had the power, under the 2014 Act, to restore to the register a company that had been struck off in January 2002 under the Companies Act 1930. Judge Jack held that the Registrar did not have this power, a conclusion he reached with regret, observing that the "failure of the 2014 Act to deal with cases where companies had been struck off under the 1930 Act is likely to have been an oversight. It may be that the Gibraltar Parliament needs to look at the issue. Nonetheless the court's function is to apply the law as it has been enacted, not as it might have been" (para. 20). Following this decision, the Registrar has announced that until further notice it will not proceed with any company restorations in respect of companies struck off under the 1930 Act; only reinstatements where the company was struck off under the 2014 Act will be dealt with: see here (pdf). A copy of the 1930 Act is available here (pdf) and a copy of the 2014 Act is available here (pdf).