Metamorph group law firm owes £2.3m, liquidators reveal

HMRC: Owed £942,000

Beaumont ABS Ltd, one of the companies in the Metamorph Law group, owes creditors £2.3m, its liquidators have revealed.

There remains mystery about what is exactly going on at the troubled law firm consolidator, but winding-up orders have now been issued in relation to two of the group companies, Beaumont and MLL Ltd.

Beaumont ABS traded in Wakefield as volume conveyancing and remortgaging firm Beaumont Legal, which Metamorph bought from US legal giant LegalZoom in 2020.

In October, estate agency Connells issued a winding-up petition against Beaumont. Shortly after, its work was transferred to Knowles Benning, a three-office Bedfordshire practice that joined Metamorph in July.

According to a statement of affairs filed at Companies House by liquidators at Macintyre Hudson, Beaumont owes Barclays Bank nearly £600,000 under a fixed and floating charge, and HM Revenue & Customs £942,000.

The statement said the liquidators would not realise any of the £4.6m in assets – mainly goodwill – subject to the fixed charge, while it was uncertain how much of the £315,000 in assets subject to the floating charge would be realised. There is £925,000 in uncharged work in progress.

Among the unsecured creditors, Connells is owed £36,000, while fellow estate agents Spicerhaart and Sequence are owed £182,000 and £96,000 respectively. Unsecured creditors in total are owed £773,000. This includes a further £39,000 owed to Barclays in Covid support loans.

MLL’s winding-up petition was served by HMRC. It has now been approved. MLL owns four of the Metamorph law firms: Linder Myers, SLC Solicitors, Verisona Law and Donnelly & Elliott.

In a separate development, Tony Stockdale, Metamorph’s executive director, this week resigned as a director of Knowles Benning. He had resigned from all of the other group companies too but was reappointed as a director of the group board three weeks later.

At the start of this month, marketing network QualitySolicitors left the Metamorph group following a management buy-out.

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