How to repay a charge that was due to a dissolved company and is now due to the Crown.
The Bona Vacantia division (BVD) of the Government Legal Department deals with the collection of money owed to a dissolved company under a mortgage, charge or charging order, known here as charges, that is now due to the Crown.
BVD has a duty to obtain market value for bona vacantia assets. In the case of charges, this will involve collecting the full amount outstanding, including any interest.
Once any outstanding amounts have been repaid, BVD will consent to the removal of the charge from the title to the property.
If BVD are satisfied that no money remained outstanding when the company was dissolved, they will provide a letter stating that there is no bona vacantia interest. This may help you apply to the Land Registry to remove the charge from the title. However, you must provide sufficient evidence to satisfy them that the charge has been paid off.
You should note that BVD will not agree to waive charges that have passed to the Crown as bona vacantia nor will they accept less than the amount due for repayment.
Apply to repay a charge or refer a case to the Treasury Solicitor
- check that BVD is the correct office by reading BVC1 on jurisdiction
- write to BVD at
Bona Vacantia - Companies
Government Legal Department
PO Box 70165
Switchboard 020 7210 4700
Please use this email address for all enquiries relating to the non cash assets of dissolved companies (eg, land, shares, intellectual property, chattels, etc).
You must include:
- the name, company number and last registered office of the dissolved company that has the benefit of the charge. You can get this information from Companies House
- Official Copy Entries (OCE) and a title plan from the Land Registry for the property that is subject to the charge. You can get this information from the Land Registry. If the land is not registered please send us a copy of the title deeds
- a copy of the mortgage deed, charge document or charging order in favour of the dissolved company. You may be able to get a copy of a charge from the Land Registry or a copy of a charging order from the Court that issued it if you do not have a copy
- details of the repayments you have made and evidence to prove that the repayments have been made. You should ideally include a schedule of payments indicating the dates on which payments were made and amounts paid. You must also include evidence of payment, for example, copies of your bank statements showing the payments going to the dissolved company or a statement from someone independent who was connected to the company who recalls the payments being made
- details of any solicitors who are acting for you
Please send your application either by post/DX or email but not both. Please do not send multiple copies.
What happens next
BVD will check whether the charge has passed to the Crown as bona vacantia.
If BVD are satisfied that it has they will calculate the amount owing under the charge, including any interest, and will let you know how much is required to pay it off.
You will also have to pay BVD’s costs of £300 plus VAT.
When this amount has been paid BVD will sign the necessary Land Registry forms to remove the charge.
If you say that there is no money outstanding under the charge BVD will consider any supporting evidence.
If BVD are satisfied that nothing is outstanding under the charge they will provide a letter which states that there is no bona vacantia interest. This letter may help you apply to the Land Registry to remove the charge from the title.
If you have insufficient evidence of repayment BVD will not consent to the removal of the charge.
If the total amount of the transaction is £10,000 or more BVD will ask for proof of identity and address in line with anti-money laundering procedures.