Whether you are seeking the services of an insolvency practitioner in order to close your company or are looking for help with turning an insolvent company around, choosing the best insolvency practitioner for the job is key.
An insolvency practitioner will analyse your company’s affairs to determine the extent of the problem, in turn offering expert advice on the best route forward, whether that is closing your insolvent company or rescuing the business. In other words, the insolvency practitioner helps you find the right solution and can determine how well you meet the desired outcomes for your company.
That’s why it’s so important to do your research and choose the right one to work with. To help, Clarke Bell has put together this handy guide outlining everything you need to know before choosing an insolvency practitioner, so you can make the right decision.
What is an insolvency practitioner’s role?
Here in the UK, licensed insolvency practitioners are authorised under the Insolvency Act 1986 to work with company and personal insolvency.
Insolvency practitioners can have several different roles – from coordinating and overseeing the closure of a company to get the best outcome for the company’s creditors, to restructuring a company so that it can restore profitability.
Ultimately the aim of the insolvency practitioner is to work with insolvent companies to get the best possible outcome under the circumstances.
What should I look out for when choosing an insolvency practitioner?
Companies that are insolvent or facing threat of liquidation are in a critical period, meaning it’s important to find an insolvency practitioner that will find the best solution to your problem.
The chosen insolvency practitioner will understand your situation and financial problems, be able to communicate with your creditors and ultimately find the best route forward.
To ensure you choose the best insolvency practitioner for your needs, there are a few key indicators to look out for:
Are they licensed?
Insolvency practitioners are required to be licensed in order to practice. When looking for an insolvency practitioner to work with, it is important that you check they are fully licensed and therefore permitted to take on your case. After all, it is only licensed practitioners that can legally perform many of the tasks required in insolvency proceedings.
Just like in any industry, there are some unscrupulous firms out there who offer insolvency advice to companies but are not licensed or qualified to do so. To avoid wasting your time, always check that the firm you are dealing with is fully licensed to take on your case.
So, what should you look out for?
There are several recognised Professional Bodies who can license insolvency practitioners, including:
- Insolvency of Practitioners Association
- Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales
- Institute of Chartered Accountants in Scotland
- Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland
What experience do they have?
Insolvency practitioners should understand or have experience across industries and be able to provide you with specific advice catered towards your sector. This specialist experience and in-depth level of expertise will help the insolvency practitioner identify the causes of your businesses’ difficulties to help you achieve the best outcome.
When carrying out the selection process, don’t be afraid to ask an insolvency practitioner how much experience they have in working with similar cases to yours. This is a good way to gauge whether you think they will be the best person for the job.
Are they a good communicator?
When it comes to working with an insolvency practitioner, communication is key.
As the insolvency practitioner’s role is to close or rescue a company, a significant part of their role requires effective communication with company directors, creditors and other stakeholders.
After all, cases of insolvency can be complicated, so it’s important that an insolvency practitioner can communicate what course of action should be taken in clear, jargon-free terms, to ensure that everyone involved is fully informed and in agreement.
What fees and costs do they charge?
When choosing an insolvency practitioner, cost and fees inevitably factor in the decision-making process. After all, insolvency practitioners’ fees vary from firm to firm, which is why it’s a good idea to ask around and get quotes from several different companies.
Some insolvency practitioners offer an initial no-obligation, free of charge consultation, which is a good way to get to know them further, weighing up their costs, how much experience they have and how they can help you to see if you wish to work with them.
Although you want to get a good deal, remember, the cheapest option isn’t always the best.
Are they trustworthy and reputable?
It’s important to choose an insolvency practitioner that you can trust to deliver results. That’s why working with a firm with a solid reputation is always the best route forward.
The great thing is is that it’s never been easier to do your research. A simple google search will uncover others’ reviews and experiences, giving you a better idea of a firm’s reputation and service level.
It is also a good idea to work with well-known, established firms. After all, those that have been around for years have clearly passed the test of time because they’re getting it right. So, choosing these well-established, reputable firms can help reassure you that you’re making the right choice.
If possible, it’s always good to get real recommendations. So, if you know someone that has been through the same experience that you’re going through, it’s always worth asking if they can recommend an insolvency practitioner to work with.
Let Clarke Bell help
At Clarke Bell, we have a dedicated and experienced team of insolvency practitioners who will work closely with you to establish the best solution for you and your company. We have been trading for over 28 years, in which time we have built up a wealth of experience and an excellent reputation, so you can rest assured that you’re only working with the best. What’s more, we provide a friendly and professional service at an affordable price.