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It is quite common in Ireland for one person to have such a variety of roles and still be a different legal entity from the company. Lee formed his crop spraying business into a limited company in which he was director, shareholder and employee. Lee was self-employed and thus not covered by the legislation. Lee and the company he had formed were separate entities, and it was possible for Mr. The following case is similar to Salomon and Lee, but the principle of separate personality worked to the disadvantage of the plaintiff.When he was killed in a flying accident, his widow sought social welfare compensation from the State, arguing that Mr. The defendant company was involved in legal proceedings but did not have enough money for legal representation.He sold the land and timber to a company he formed and received as consideration all the fully paid shares.The company carried the business of felling and milling timber. Macaura had earlier insured the timber against loss of by fire in his own name. He subsequently sold the plantation to a company of which he was the only shareholder, through the purchase money remained owing to him.The plaintiff, who was the major shareholder and managing director of the company, sought to conduct the company’s defence.The court held that while a human person can represent him or herself in court, a legal person such as a company can only be represented by a solicitor or barrister.These are the exceptions to the rule in Salomon’s Case, when the corporate veil is lifted and the reality of the situation is examined.
In other words, if a corporation, in the course of doing business, is involved in any legal action, then the corporation, for legal purposes, is its own person.The liquidator and the other creditors objected to this, claiming that it was unfair for the person who formed and ran the company to get paid first.However, the House of Lords held that the company was a different legal person from the shareholders, and thus Mr Salomon, as a shareholder and creditor, was totally separate in law from the company A Salomon & Co Ltd.Mr Salomon owned 20,000 £1 shares, and his wife and five children owned one share each.
Some years later the company went into liquidation, and Mr Salomon claimed to be entitled to be paid first as a secured debenture holder.The ‘corporate veil’ surrounds the company of Murphy & Co Ltd and prevents outsiders challenging the operation of the company.