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What happens to a lease that has been disclaimed when a company struck off the Register is restored?

When a company ceases to exist because it has been struck off the Register at Companies House, all property belonging to that company becomes “bona vacantia” and automatically belongs to the Crown.
Where the property belonging to the company has obligations associated with it (such as a lease of commercial premises with rent payable) the Crown often terminates that property by way of a disclaimer.  It is possible for a company to be restored to the Register and exist again but there has been debate as to what happens to property that belonged to the company but was disclaimed.
A recent case in Scotland has shed some light on that and whilst not binding on the English courts, it may prove influential.  In ELB Securities Ltd v Love and another [2015] ScotCS CSIH 67, the tenant company was struck off but continued to occupy leasehold premises.  The Crown disclaimed the lease.  The tenant company got itself restored to the Company Registers and continued to occupy the leasehold premises.  The landlord wanted possession of the premises.  The tenant argued in court that as it had been restored to the Register all its property was restored to it as if the property had never vested in the Crown and therefore disclaimer should be treated as if it had never happened.   The landlord claimed that once the lease had been disclaimed there was no going back and that any other view would give rise to considerable uncertainty.
The court agreed with the landlord.  The court accepted that there were certain statutory provisions enabling a third party (such as a sub-tenant) to have protection against a disclaimer but those provisions did not apply to the company itself.
If you would like further advice regarding leases please contact Tom Warrender
If you would like further advice about restoring a company to the Register please contact Kevin Rogers