The collapse of a behemoth like Thomas Cook is felt widely across the business community. Twenty six companies in the group entered liquidation on 23 September 2019 with the result that business stopped immediately across the board. This left repatriation of some 155,000 Brits to the Civil Aviation Authority (which reportedly chartered 45 aircraft to address the task at hand, leaving Thomas Cook’s fleet of 34 planes grounded).

Insolvencies are of course a fact of business life. Nevertheless, the ripple effect of a large insolvency can create a domino effect for suppliers and customers alike. Those affected by the liquidation of Thomas Cook will need to ascertain their losses and file claims (proofs of debt) with the liquidator. Generally the prospects of recoveries for unsecured creditors are not good. Depending on the circumstances it is possible sometimes to argue that property held by the insolvent company is to be returned (whether that might be cash or property).