Asking for help if your business is in trouble

No business ever wants to end up in financial trouble or legal strife, but when things start to go pear shaped, you need a good lawyer. That’s where we can come in.

It’s best to avoid trouble in the first place if possible of course – so getting some advice on issues like structuring business expansions (such as, opening new branches) and getting your staffing arrangements right can give your business the best chance of success.

If things do go wrong, though, including if you’re looking down the barrel of possible liquidation or receivership, we can guide you through the process including:

    • negotiating with creditors
    • helping to structure repayment plans so you can avoid bankruptcy
    • managing employment relationships and redundancies
    • making sure you still comply with your legal obligations, such as director duties.

Don’t do what one of our clients did recently, though, and come to us for help a few days before their company was liquidated! That’s far too late to do anything constructive, like recovering debt from slow payers. By that time, the writing is on the wall.

Small business owners tend to care very deeply about their businesses – building up a business is a really personal matter. So, they often struggle on, thinking that they can resolve things by sheer willpower. But denial just gets you deeper in the mire. It’s far better to come to get some advice as soon as things look iffy.

Sticking your head in the sand can also lead to some really bad decisions. For instance, we’ve had people come to us after borrowing money in their own names to try to prop up their business, instead of organising loans through their company. They have no idea that this can lead to massive complications. They could end up as unsecured creditors and the company may have been trading when insolvent (this is a breach of director’s duties and can attract personal liability) and it doesn’t keep the liquidator or Inland Revenue at bay.

So, don’t be an ostrich. Ask for help if you need it. We’re always here to advise – and the sooner, the better.