What is Bankruptcy?
Available to those living in England, Northern Ireland and Wales, Bankruptcy is a legally binding debt solution to resolve a debt problem that cannot be resolved. In Scotland, this is sometimes called sequestration.
Who Can Apply for Bankruptcy
If you have debts of over £5 000, you can apply for bankruptcy.
How Do I Declare Myself Bankrupt?
If you live in England or Wales, you can apply for bankruptcy on the government website. Your application fee will be £130, and your bankruptcy deposit will be £550.
If you live in Northern Ireland, you need to apply to the court. Your court fee will be £137, and your bankruptcy fee will be £525. Also, you need to swear the contents of your statement of affairs in front of a solicitor. The fee for this is £7.
If you live in Scotland, you can apply for bankruptcy on the Accountant in Bankruptcy’s website. Your application fee will be £200 or £90 for a Minimal Asset Process (MAP) bankruptcy if you qualify.
The Bankruptcy Process
- Talk to one of our friendly and professional guides who can help you to decide whether bankruptcy is the right debt solution for you. There may be alternatives to bankruptcy that you could consider.
- Fill out your bankruptcy form on the government website and pay your fee.
- You will receive a letter from the Official Receiver/Accountant in Bankruptcy detailing everything you must do.
- Your accounts will be frozen, and you will be interviewed by your Trustee and must cooperate with their requests for information.
- Your Trustee will decide whether you need to make monthly payments toward your debt and which of your assets will be sold.
- Details of bankruptcies are recorded on the public Individual Insolvency Register in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and the Register of Insolvencies in Scotland.
What Happens When Bankruptcy Finishes?
After 12 months, if you have fully cooperated with your Trustee, you will receive an automatic discharge from your bankruptcy. All remaining debts will be written off. Your bankruptcy will remain on your credit file for six years.
If you are making payments into your bankruptcy, these usually last for three years (England, Wales and NI) or four years (Scotland) so will likely continue after you have been discharged.
Is Declaring Bankruptcy Right for Me?
It is important to understand that the making of a Bankruptcy Order has consequences. You must assess the advantages and disadvantages before you proceed.
Advantages of Bankruptcy
- Bankruptcy includes all unsecured debts.
- Interest is frozen (unless debts are paid in full, then you may have to pay statutory interest).
- After 12 months, all debt is written off and no further action will be taken by creditors.
- Many people find that bankruptcy is the quickest and cheapest debt solution.
- In England and Wales, the application can be done online, and the fees can be paid in instalments.
Disadvantages of Bankruptcy
- Your employment may be affected by bankruptcy. Be sure to check your employment contract!
- If you own property or any other assets of value, they may be sold.
- Bankruptcy fees are £680 (£647 in NI, £200 in Scotland), additional fees will be paid out of the sale of your assets.
- You will appear on the public Individual Insolvency Register/Register of Insolvencies whilst bankrupt, and the bankruptcy will appear on your credit file for six years.
- There may be other restrictions, you can find these on the government’s website.
How Debt Movement Can Help
Although Debt Movement do not administer bankruptcy’s, we will always give you unbiased help and guidance when it comes to deciding on the right debt solution. Request a free callback and talk to one of our friendly and caring guides today, and you could start your journey to financial freedom.