My last post on this little mess implied that there was pretty slack official monitoring of the NZ Company Register for obviously false or impermissible registration information.
But one or two other sightings invite the question: does anyone in New Zealand take Para 1, Section 377 of the Companies Act seriously, any more?
377 False statements
- (1) Every person who, with respect to a document required by or for the purposes of this Act,—
- (a) makes, or authorises the making of, a statement in it that is false or misleading in a material particular knowing it to be false or misleading; or
- (b) omits, or authorises the omission from it of, any matter knowing that the omission makes the document false or misleading in a material particular—
commits an offence, and is liable on conviction to the penalties set out in section 373(4).
Heck, even the New Zealand Companies House’s own internal software development team think it’s OK to put garbage on the official register:
The register affirms these entities to be genuine New Zealand companies. It seems unlikely. Is there really some unfortunate Natural Person in New Zealand called Test DIRECTOR? In reality these are just figments of some (rather skimpy, to my eyes) functional regression test scripts. But what is their legal status?
I don’t suppose the Companies Office should be prosecuting its own software team under the Companies Act. The developers wouldn’t be doing this, if they had a clue.
But it might be a good idea for Companies Office to give the team a spot of remedial training covering a) what an entry on the official register actually means, and b) the desirability of segregating test and live environments.
If enough computer kit really isn’t available already, the developers also need a dedicated test environment. Don’t allow (or force) them to run riot on the live system.
Further reading: Dear Companies House, make sure you don’t take any clean-up tips from HSBC, either.