Face up to financial problems, TC warns hauliers07 October 2013

Hauliers with financial problems must not ignore their legal duty to inform traffic commissioners about insolvency action.

That's the warning from Nick Jones, West Midlands traffic commissioner, whose call follows a public enquiry involving the partners of a Shrewsbury haulage firm, who were subject to personal bankruptcy orders.

The commissioner praised the individuals for their prompt application for a Regulation 31 order – which allows third parties to take over a licence in financial difficulty, subject to the regulator's approval.

Jones added that the presence of the administrator at the public inquiry had been of "very real assistance" in his decision on whether to approve the application.

However, he also remarked that this situation was not the norm for operators facing financial uncertainty.

"Historically, too many entities that get into financial difficulties ignore the important legal provisions relating to communicating with the Office of the Traffic Commissioner and addressing the need to comply with operator licensing requirements," he observed.

In this case, he said, the administrator's actions enabled him to make decisions that helped the business to keep running, and debtors were likely to be paid. The administrator took over the licence.

The commissioner noted evidence that undertakings on the licence, primarily relating to maintenance, had not been complied with, but that moves were underway to resolve those issues.

Author
Laura Cork

Related Companies
Department for Transport

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