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Title: Limited liability : a pathway for corporate recklessness?
Author: Dabor, Igho Lordson
ISNI:       0000 0004 6349 2057
Awarding Body: University of Wolverhampton
Current Institution: University of Wolverhampton
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis argues that the twin concept of separate personality and limited liability from its historical beginnings, has entrenched corporate irresponsibility. It assesses the role that these concepts have played in tackling corporate irresponsibility from their historical origins to the present day, commenting on the lessons learnt. Whilst the institution of the company as a legal person is unquestionably the bedrock of modern company law,1 this thesis examines these concepts not necessarily from the position of disputing the philosophical, economic, or political imperatives, all of which are incredibly important – but from the viewpoint that historically, the principle of separate personality and limited liability entrenches corporate irresponsibility. As such, this thesis suggests a partial abandonment of the separate personality principle because it provides a mechanism for dishonest directors to escape liability for their fraudulent conduct. It also argues that the existing judicial evasion and concealment2 principles and the statutory fraudulent and wrongful trading provisions under the Insolvency Act 19863 are too restrictive, and ambiguous in combating corporate abuse. It is concluded that the existing common law and statutory rules geared towards combating abuse of limited liability provides no coherent format upon which the courts and legislature may effectively curb abuse of the corporate form. As such, these laws in light of their inability to make dishonest directors personally liable for their fraudulent conducts ought to be challenged. There is a need to challenge the existing rules in order to show the effect abuse of limited liability has on creditors, the public and the economy. This research indicates that there ought to be an adequate and effective alternative law which provides balance and support for genuine enterprise whilst providing a robust system whereby those who abuse the corporate form can be easily made liable for corporate debts.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Limited Liability ; History ; Corporate Personality ; Corporate irresponsibility ; Piercing the Corporate veil under Common Law ; Salomon v Salomon Ltd ; Statutory piercing of the veil ; Prest v Petrodel Resources Ltd ; Evasion and Concealment Principles