HMRC winding-up petitions at highest level since before pandemic

31st August 2023

HMRC has issued the highest number of winding-up petitions since before the pandemic, according to data from Kroll. D

In July 348 winding-up petitions were registered with this the highest number of court orders in any month since 2019.

The figures also showed that the number of time-to-pay agreements was up by 20% in Quarter 1 compared with Quarter 4 2022.

The report said that HMRC has become more aggressive in its enforcement and collection processes in the first six months of the year and has restricted its discretion with time-to-pay arrangements.

David Fleming, UK Head of Restructuring at Kroll, said “The tax office was broadly supportive of companies with a strong underlying business. However the authority was generally keen to impress upon directors that they are not a lender, and they are certainly not a lender of last resort.”

“It will be interesting to see how HMRC reacts to what is coming across on their desks in the run-up to Christmas. They need to get comfortable that they are dealing with a viable underlying business that is worthy of support as opposed to a lend-and-extend scenario, where the business fails three or four months down the line.”