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It is not unknown for Directors to destroy company records once a company has gone into liquidation and even beforehand but as a Director, do not destroy company records due to GDPR or indeed for any purposes without taking professional advice.

The simple answer to the question is this, a Director is not permitted to destroy company records except when there is no longer an obligation to keep them.

But why not? 

Can I Destroy Company Records Due To GDPR?

Company Records That Must Be Created And Retained

Because there are laws that require company Directors to keep company and accounting records. Those laws do not provide any green light to destroying company records per se under GDPR or because a company has gone into liquidation or dissolution.

Company records are documents and data a company is required to keep.

They are the Company’s information about its activities. Without such records, a company cannot show what it has been doing and why it was doing whatever it was doing.

Company Records Law

Under Section 386 of the Companies Act 2006 a company must keep adequate account records. For more information on such records see our post What Are Adequate Accounting Records?.

The purpose of company records is because a company must account for its actions through its Board of Directors who have run the company. If there are no records there is no obvious way for the Directors to justify what they have done other than their own self-serving assertions.

There are typically two types of records that are fundamental. Underlying records such as purchase and sales invoices and bank statements that show its trading activities. Those are activities that more often than not will appear on the profit and loss account.

In addition, there are accounting records the company must keep that often will be its own created record. These will often be ledgers that enable a company to work out what it owes its creditors and what it is owed by its customers / clients. Those accounting records often feature on a company’s balance sheet.

It is a criminal offence under Section 387 of the Companies Act 2006 to fail to keep or destroy company records that are not available for three years from the date they are made in the case of a private company or six years for a public company. However, it is wise to keep company records for at least six years because of the statutory records a company must keep due to tax legislation.

For more information see our article What Records Must A Company Keep?.

What Is GDPR?

GDPR is short for General Data Protection Regulation. This was put in place through the Data Protection Act 2018

Data protection and privacy is an important matter overseen by the Information Commissioner’s Office

However, it is not a piece of legislation that is in conflict with other laws such as company and tax legislation. Notably Part 5(2) of Schedule 5 of the Data Protection Act 2018:

The listed GDPR provisions do not apply to personal data where disclosure of the data is required by an enactment, a rule of law or an order of a court or tribunal, to the extent that the application of those provisions would prevent the controller from making the disclosure.

GET IN TOUCH FOR HELP

For a free no obligation chat about any of the matters detailed above, please do get in touch for help. An expert will call you back or if you prefer exchange emails.

We can explore your situation and consider the best way to help you and your business needs. You can call us 020 3925 3613 or fill in the form below and will get back to you quickly. We Know Insolvency Inside Out.

Author: Elliot Green
Last Updated: May 20, 2024

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Disclaimer: Can I Destroy Company Records Due To GDPR?

This page is not legal advice and is not to be relied upon as such. This article Can I Destroy Company Records Due To GDPR? is provided for information purposes only. You should take independent advice on the facts of your case. No liability is accepted for reliance upon this post.

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