What you can do if you cannot effect service of insolvency proceedings on the respondent
What you can do if you cannot effect service of insolvency proceedings on the respondent

The following Restructuring & Insolvency guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • What you can do if you cannot effect service of insolvency proceedings on the respondent
  • Service—the general position
  • Practical steps to take if service cannot be effected
  • Application for an alternative method of service
  • Matters to set out in an application for an alternative method of service

Once insolvency proceedings have been issued one of the first steps that must be taken is to serve the application and supporting documents on a respondent (except where the application is without notice, or the court directs that service is not required). However, problems can occur when it is not possible to serve a respondent. Reasons for this might be that they cannot be located, or that they are deliberately avoiding service.

This Practice Note looks at the steps an applicant can take in insolvency proceedings if they cannot effect service of the application and supporting documents on a respondent. This Practice Note only looks at applications made within existing insolvency proceedings and their service (formerly known as ordinary applications); it does not look at alternative methods of service for bankruptcy petitions, winding-up petitions and administration applications by which insolvency proceedings are opened. For further reading on the service of documents opening insolvency proceedings, see Practice Notes:

  1. How do you effect service of a creditor’s bankruptcy petition on the debtor and what if service cannot be effected?

  2. Compulsory winding up of a company—the process and procedure

  3. Court appointments-the procedure

For further reading on service generally of insolvency proceedings issued within existing insolvency proceedings, see Practice Note: Service of documents in insolvency proceedings—how service is effected, what needs to be served and when.

Service—the general position

The general position for service of proceedings issued within existing insolvency proceedings is that the application notice, witness statement and any other supporting documents, must be served on the respondent. The methods of service differ to those for the proceedings opening the relevant insolvency process (ie bankruptcy/winding-up