As a director of a business of any size, whether a co-director or a single director you will likely play a vital role in the day to day running of the company. The role of a director is a crucial one which cannot be overlooked as they will be responsible for outlining the overall goals and strategies of the company as well as for overseeing the business and putting into place procedures to ensure the continuing success of the company. The director is also the individual who will be faced with the toughest decisions should the company begin to show signs of failure. Even so-called “passive” co-directors who may be director only in name and not in actions need to be aware of the weight carried by the title as they can be brought to the fore should issues arise, as evidenced in last year’s case featuring model and presenter Glenda Gilson in which she was ‘deceived’ by her co-director brother about the poor handling of company matters.


More recently A&L Goodbody have written about a case “Murphy V O’Flynn wherein a liquidator sought a court order restricting directors William and Deirdre O’Flynn from acting as directors of their company following a repeated failure to file the appropriate accounts. This was deemed a severe failure and a breach of obligation by the company directors. Whilst Mr. O’Flynn made no objection to the order against him, Mrs O’Flynn claimed that she had been deceived by her husband in regards to the company affairs offering forgeries of her signature as evidence. As the judge in this case was satisfied with her testimony, she was not restricted by the high court.


The importance of cases like these cannot be overstated as it highlights an Act which all prospective directors should be aware of. Section 819 of the Companies Act replaced section 150 of the same Act. This stipulates that a director must establish that he/she has acted honestly and responsibly in relation to company affairs before or after insolvency, as well as having co-operated with winding up and liquidation proceedings as much as possible.


These cases showcase the importance not only of directors, but of active directors. As a partial or full director of any company it is your responsibility to ensure that you keep abreast of company dealings as even ‘passive’ directors have a responsibility to their company and clients/creditors.


Should you have any queries or require any advice or guidance on your own company and financial matters please don’t hesitate to contact us here at DCA Accountants where we will be happy to help.


With the Christmas party season just around the corner, we here at DCA Accountants are always looking out for the best interests of our clients and readers. As such, we have decided to talk today about the darker side of the office Christmas party which could place a dark cloud over the season for you or your staff. The Christmas party season is often rife with reports of bullying of all kinds and harassment. Not quite the ideal way to round off a busy working year.


The office Christmas Party is a great way to thank your employees for a year of hard work and dedication. It can also be a good way to get to know your co-workers outside of a strict office environment. However, from a managerial standpoint it can be somewhat of a mine-field, with a UK study stating that one in ten employees knows someone who has been disciplined or dismissed following the staff Christmas party. The top two culprits here are alcohol-fuelled fights and sexual harassment issues. These issues are not widely considered when choosing the event, but one that is important to bear in mind. We suggest some ways to avoid these awkward and unnecessary stumbling blocks and ensure that both you and all staff have a wonderful trouble-free evening.


The standard office Christmas party will usually occur outside of the work premises. Despite this fact, it is vital to remember that the responsibility still remains with the employer to ensure the protection of all employees. If cases of harassment are brought up, you as the employer are liable, despite the party location. The party environment may be festive, but legally the event is just an extension of the office.


A good way to ensure that all staff know that they must still behave appropriately with one another during the party is to circulate a memo which pinpoints the company’s/office’s no-tolerance approach to issues such as bullying and harassment. This notice should also include the company grievance procedures should any staff have issues. Management should be advised not to discuss any business matters such as salaries etc. at the event. This will ensure that no promises are made under the influence of alcohol which cannot be kept when the haze passes.


Something else which is not widely considered is that the party should be optional for all staff and not mandatory. This allows for people with other beliefs or responsibilities to politely decline without feeling awkward. We would also advise arranging specific finishing times for your event and perhaps arranging transport to avoid further dangers for you and your staff.


With employers and employees under increasing pressure to hold onto their positions, these easy pitfalls at the staff Christmas party are easily avoided. The most important thing to bear in mind is that the boundaries of acceptable behaviour must be set out beforehand in order to avoid any unnecessary stress or awkwardness. We here at DCA Accountants hope that you and all your staff/co-workers have an enjoyable Christmas party and festive season.