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Bona Vacantia Money

Page updated 19 June 2015

The Treasury is sometimes asked to take action in respect of money held by a company which has been struck off the Companies Register.  Please note that bona vacantia money is different to unclaimed money, which has an owner - albeit one that cannot be found. Further information on unclaimed money can be found at Unclaimed Money.

Receipt of Bona Vacantia Money

The Treasury on behalf of the Crown can receive money held in the name of a struck off company.  Before doing so we need to be satisfied that the money constitutes property of a struck off company.
 
To this end we require a statutory declaration from someone with knowledge of the matter which includes:

    1. details of the how the funds became payable to the struck off company ("the Company");
    1. details of the circumstances surrounding the striking off of the Company without first collecting and dealing with the funds; and
    1. any steps undertaken to contact the directors of the Company.

You will also need to provide extracts from the Companies Office for the Company showing when it was registered and when it was struck off.

Provided that we find the statutory declaration and the Companies Office extracts to be satisfactory we will accept a transfer of the funds to the Treasury.

A template forms of the statutory declaration is available below. 
We encourage applicants to provide draft documentation to the Treasury's Legal Team for comment prior to issuing final documentation. This allows the Treasury's Legal Team to identify:

  • any issues with documentation, and/or
  • any other documents that we require to process the application.

 

Template

Statutory Declaration - Money (receipt)   (Word, 29KB)

Distribution of Bona Vacantia Money  

The Treasury on behalf of the Crown can distribute funds held in the name of a struck off company.  Before doing so we need to be satisfied that the funds have vested in the Crown, distribution of the funds is to be made to the correct people, and that there will be no claims against Crown arising from distributing the funds.
 
To this end we require the following:

  1. A statutory declaration by a director of the struck off company ("the Company") (or someone else associated with the Company) at the time the Company was struck off which includes:

    1.1 details of the how the funds became payable to the Company;

    1.2 details of the circumstances surrounding the striking off of the Company without first collecting and dealing with the funds; and

    1.3 a declaration that the Company held the funds in its own right and not on trust for any other body corporate or any other person.

    If you are unable to locate any former officers of the Company we may accept a statutory declaration from someone else with knowledge of the matter.  However, their statutory declaration will also need to include details of the steps taken to contact the former Company.

  2. An application requesting the Crown to deal with the matter pursuant to the relevant section of the Companies Act 1993 or Companies Act 1955, together with an indemnity from the applicant in favour of the Crown in respect of all or any liability that may be incurred by the Crown in respect of all actions taken, or not taken as the case may be, in relation to the funds. 

  3. The application will also need to confirm that the applicant has been authorised by the former shareholders and directors of the Company to accept the distribution of the funds.

  4. Extracts from the Companies Office for the Company showing when it was registered and when it was struck off.

  5. A certified copy of the applicant's current passport or driver's licence.

  6. The details of the nominated bank account into which the funds are to be deposited.

  7. Your undertaking to pay our costs (approximately $400) and to reimburse any advertising costs and other disbursements we need to incur in connection with this matter. We are entitled to recover our costs pursuant to section 75(2) of the Public Finance Act 1989.

Provided that we find the above documents to be satisfactory we will transfer the funds to the nominated bank account.

As an alternative to seeking a distribution of the funds by the Crown you may also wish to consider an application to restore the Company to the register.  In some circumstances this can be a faster and cheaper process than seeking a distribution.  On restoration the funds and any other property of the company vest back in the company as if it had not been struck off the register.

Template forms of the statutory declaration and the application and indemnity are available below. 
We encourage applicants to provide draft documentation to the Treasury's Legal Team for comment prior to issuing final documentation. This allows the Treasury's Legal Team to identify:

  • any issues with documentation, and/or
  • any other documents that we require to process the application.

 

Templates

Statutory Declaration - Money (payment)   (Word, 25KB)

Application and Indemnity - Money (payment) (Word, 28KB)

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