Introduction: What is a Successor Director?

In the dynamic realm of business, the preservation of operations is of utmost importance. However, what transpires when unforeseen events disrupt the flow, such as the sudden incapacitation or, even more unfortunate, the passing away of a company’s sole director? This is where the notion of a Successor Director comes into play—an already designated individual who steps in to guarantee the smooth functioning of the company during these unexpected scenarios. This safeguard isn’t merely a theoretical concept; it’s a pragmatic remedy addressing a tangible challenge that Australian businesses currently face.

This article was first posted in the Abbott & Mourly website, the official legal partner of Invigor8 Estate Planning.

The Problem: A Case Study

Consider the case of John Smith, an actively involved sole director of a successful small business. John also holds the position of director for his family trust and manages his self-managed super fund. Tragically, John is involved in a serious accident and passes away, leaving behind a wife, two young children, and a business in a state of uncertainty. Bills begin to accumulate, employees go unpaid, and even accessing funds for John’s funeral becomes an ordeal. The business, which was thriving not long ago, now teeters on the edge of collapse.

ASIC’s Concerns

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has issued a warning through Info 73, drawing attention to this concern. In their advisory, ASIC underscores the severe repercussions that companies may face in the absence of a director. Ranging from operational disruptions to outstanding payments owed to employees and suppliers, the absence of a Successor Director can result in a swift erosion of a company’s worth and standing. ASIC’s caution serves as a call to action, urging companies to promptly rectify this oversight.

The Solution: Successor Director by Abbott & Mourly Lawyers

Abbott & Mourly Lawyers present an all-encompassing Successor Director solution that not only resolves ASIC’s apprehensions but also establishes a resilient framework for maintaining business operations without disruption. This solution entails enhancing the company’s constitution to encompass provisions for a Successor Director and executing a proactive resolution, which automatically appoints the Successor Director during unforeseen contingencies. Additionally, an essential Deed of Indemnity is provided to safeguard the incoming director from liabilities stemming from prior company actions.

Five Benefits of Establishing a Successor Director via Abbott & Mourly Lawyers

  1. Immediate Business Continuity: The Successor Director is automatically installed, ensuring that the business operations continue without a hitch.
  2. Legal Compliance: The solution is in line with ASIC’s guidelines, mitigating legal risks and potential liabilities.
  3. Financial Stability: With a Successor Director in place, banks and financial institutions are more likely to continue their business relationships, ensuring financial stability.
  4. Employee and Supplier Confidence: Knowing that there is a plan for business continuity increases the confidence of employees and suppliers, which is crucial for maintaining the company’s reputation.
  5. Peace of Mind: For the family and stakeholders, knowing that the business and its assets are in capable hands provides invaluable peace of mind during a difficult time.


The concept of a Successor Director is not just a best practice; it’s a necessity for any company with a sole director. We offer a streamlined, legally compliant solution that addresses the concerns raised by ASIC and provides a safety net for businesses and families alike. In a world filled with uncertainties, a Successor Director is the assurance your company needs to weather any storm.

For more information on implementing a Successor Director solution for your business, contact us through our convenient form submission here, or reach out via email at [email protected]. Alternatively, you can give us a call at 1300 844 678 and get advice today.