A range of offences for directors and other office holders within a company can attract criminal and civil liability, including:
- acting recklessly or with intentional dishonesty and failing to fulfil your duties to the corporation
- using your position or information dishonestly (or recklessly) with the intention to gain an advantage for yourself or someone else or to cause a detriment to the corporation
- insolvent trading
- illegal phoenix activity
- outstanding tax obligations
- debts incurred by companies acting as trustees.
In the most serious cases, the maximum penalty is 10 years of imprisonment and/or the larger of:
- 4,500 penalty units
- three times the ‘benefit gained’ or ‘loss avoided’ because of the offence.
Other consequences of breaching directors' duties may include:
- personal liability to compensate the company for losses caused by the breach
- personal liability to compensate shareholders, creditors or other third parties for losses caused by the breach
- removal from office
- banning orders preventing the office holder from managing other companies.
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