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Collapsed contractor Rok revived for insurance claim

Dissolved contractor Rok plc has been restored as part of a move by one of its former insurers to partially recoup a payout it made on behalf of the firm.

Rok, which was officially dissolved in January 2017, was restored to the companies register last month so its insurer, Royal Sun Alliance (RSA), could seek a contribution from scaffolding firm LTC Group87 towards a historic claim it paid out.

Rok went into administration in November 2010, making more than 3,000 staff redundant and owing subcontractors more than £280m.

CN understands a personal injury claim was made against Rok by a third party when the contractor was still solvent pre-2010.

After the company went into administration, RSA had to pay out the claim.

When asked by CN about the claimant’s name or the nature of the claim, RSA said it could not disclose details.

RSA is now seeking a contribution towards that payment from scaffolding company LTC Group 87 through what is called a subrogated claim.

Plymouth-based LTC Group87 is a construction access and training company which provides specialist scaffolding, powered access and hoists services to construction firms.

A subrogated claim is when an insurance company has the right to seek contribution towards a claim it has paid out from a third-party it deems jointly liable.

In most cases, this can be resolved simply between the insurer and the company it is insuring.

However, in the case of a dissolved company like Rok, the company must be restored on the list of registered companies before an insurer can make the subrogated claim.

RSA launched an order to restore Rok with the Central London County Court last November, with the judge granting full restoration on 17 March.

Once Rok was restored the claim could be transferred, or subrogated, to RSA so it could pursue a contribution from LTC Group87.

As part of the subrogated claim process, RSA was required to get the revived Rok liquidated immediately after transferring the claim.

RSA lodged a petition to do this last month and was yesterday granted its winding-up order at the Royal Courts of Justice that will see Rok liquidated by the official receiver.

Rok became the biggest casualty of the recession to date when it collapsed in November 2010.

The company was known as EBC Contractors before it was relaunched as Rok in 2001 by the firm’s chief executive Garvis Snook.

A string of acquisitions, including Inverness-based contractor Tulloch Construction for £31.3m, saw the value of the company soar from £7m in 2000 to £322m.

However, by 2010 the company suffered a number of profit warnings and went into administration.

RSA and LTC Group87 declined to comment.

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