Bankruptcy restrictions orders (BROs)
Produced in partnership with Lydia Pemberton of 3PB
Bankruptcy restrictions orders (BROs)

The following Restructuring & Insolvency guidance note Produced in partnership with Lydia Pemberton of 3PB provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Bankruptcy restrictions orders (BROs)
  • What are bankruptcy restrictions orders and why they were introduced?
  • Who can apply for a BRO?
  • When can proceedings be brought?
  • Interim BROs
  • Applying to set aside an interim BRO
  • The procedure and timing of an application for a BRO
  • Application
  • Evidence in support of application
  • Service of application
  • more

A bankrupt is discharged from bankruptcy one year after their bankruptcy commences, unless the court grants a suspension of that discharge by reason of a bankrupt's failure to co-operate with the official receiver (OR) or their trustee in bankruptcy (trustee)—see section 279 of the Insolvency Act 1986 (IA 1986). On discharge, the disqualifications and restrictions which apply to an undischarged bankrupt cease. For further reading on what these disqualifications and restrictions are, see Practice Note: The immediate effects of a bankruptcy order on the bankrupt.

What are bankruptcy restrictions orders and why they were introduced?

In those cases of bankruptcy which are not simply the result of honest misfortune—but are due to the bankrupt's misconduct or recklessness—it is considered appropriate to ensure that the disqualifications and restrictions imposed in bankruptcy are maintained for a longer period than one year, to protect the public interest and serve as a deterrent. As a result, the Enterprise Act 2002 inserted a new section (IA 1986, s 281A) and Schedule (IA 1986, Sch 4A) into the IA 1986, so that with effect from 1 April 2004, the bankruptcy restrictions regime was in force. This means that if a bankruptcy restrictions order (BRO) is made by the court (or a bankruptcy restrictions undertaking (BRU) is accepted by the Secretary of State for Business, Energy &