HC Deb 17 December 1985 vol 89 cc136-7W
Mr. Wood

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he has any specific proposals for the simplification of parts of company law.

Mr. Howard

Yes. My Department has received numerous representations suggesting that the ultra vires rule as applied to companies has outlived its usefulness and is an unnecessary burden on companies and creditors alike. I have therefore asked Dr. Dan Prentice of Oxford university to examine the legal and commercial implications of abolishing the rule as it applies to companies registered under the Companies Act and to > make recommendations on legislative changes which may be necessary consequent on abolition. Dr. Prentice will start work shortly and will report by 31 May 1986. He will consult widely in the course of the study but once his report is available, my Department will, in any case, issue a consultative document inviting comments on any proposed changes. Subject to the outcome of the consultation, any necessary legislation will be brought forward at the first available opportunity. In addition, I am proposing to commission a similar study in relation to registration of company charges. I will make an announcement about this shortly.