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Company Law

Company Law (2nd edn)

Lee Roach
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date: 22 April 2024

p. 794. Corporate personalitylocked

p. 794. Corporate personalitylocked

  • Lee RoachLee RoachSenior Lecturer, University of Portsmouth


This chapter looks at one of, if not the, defining characteristic of the company, namely its corporate personality. At its most basic level, the doctrine of corporate personality simply provides that the company is a person. As such, it can do many things that humans are able to do, including own property, enter into contracts, and be subject to legal rights, duties, and obligations. However, the artificial nature of corporate personality, and the fact that it can be abused, means that a significant body of law has developed in this area. The law provides for several ways in which a company’s corporate personality can be set aside. These include statutory provisions and the common law. Moreover, individuals may contract away the protection of corporate personality and render themselves personally liable.

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