Halliwells’ suspicious minds

Former Halliwells equity partners sat down with the failed firm’s liquidators last week to mediate, hoping to resolve their differences in a friendly manner.

But, as The Lawyer revealed yesterday, there’s a group of potential litigants enmeshed in the Halliwells saga that believes that relations between the firm’s former top brass and its liquidators (formerly the administrators) are already a little too friendly (see story).

The group, which consists of former fixed-share partners who are mulling action against the ex-equity partners, suspects that Halliwells and the liquidators had a close and lucrative working relationship prior to the firm’s meltdown and that this should have been disclosed to the court. As a result of this relationship, they say, certain classes of partners were dealt with more favourably than others in the aftermath of the firm’s collapse.

One of the liquidators, BDO partner Dermot Power, has rejected the claims, stating that as one of Manchester’s biggest business services firms BDO was bound to interact with Halliwells from time to time.

One thing is clear: with every detail of the administration being picked over, it doesn’t bode well for that friendly resolution.