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Business Law1 Essay

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The history of the corporation
[2.10] The derivation of the modern company

• Introduction

o A corporation is an organisational structure that facilitates the raising of finance for business activity from those with capital for investment but no interest or capacity for management of that business
o Creditors are people who are owed money
o Liquidators are sometimes is the company, or sometimes an agent for the company
o In the 20th century the company emerged as dominant form of business association in western society

• The recognition of corporate persons

o A registered company formed under companies legislation is the pre-eminent modern form of the corporation
o Concept of a ‘corporate person’ (as opposed to a natural person) was becoming naturalised in our law at end of the 15th century
o The earliest development in the new law of the incorporate person was in canon law from associations in which property of church was vested
o Incorporation slowly began to be recognised in common law and other groups which had nothing to do with the church i.e. universities, and boroughs – most important from the view of development of legal doctrine
o Recognition of the corporate person introduced many problems including one of classification  in the 15th – 18th centuries, there were 2 main groups
o Corporations aggregate: most important class, consisted of many persons united into one society and kept up by perpetual succession of members i.e. mayor and commonalty of a city, dean and chapter of cathedral church
o Corporations sole: consisted of one person only and his successors i.e. king, bishop, some deans
o Recognition of the existence of an incorporate person also involved recognition of three main principles:
o A corporation is a person distinct from its members
o Property of the corporation is distinct from property of its members
o Property of its members cannot be taken in execution for debt of corporation and vice versa

• Boroughs and...

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