Personal insolvency for dispute resolution practitioners: bankruptcy

The following Restructuring & Insolvency practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Personal insolvency for dispute resolution practitioners: bankruptcy
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • What is bankruptcy?
  • The effects of bankruptcy and how long it lasts
  • How to make someone bankrupt
  • Types of petition
  • Grounds for creditors' petition
  • Summary of process
  • What if the debtor disputes debt?
  • What happens after the bankruptcy order is made
  • More...

Personal insolvency for dispute resolution practitioners: bankruptcy

This Practice Note is a summary of bankruptcy and its impact on legal proceedings from a dispute resolution perspective.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

This content contains guidance on subjects impacted by the Coronavirus Act 2020 and related changes to court procedures and processes as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, including the Temporary Insolvency Practice Direction 2020. For further information, see Practice Notes: Coronavirus (COVID-19)—Changes to the court process in insolvency proceedings and The Temporary Insolvency Practice Direction Supporting the Insolvency Practice Direction (June 2021). For related news, guidance and other resources to assist practitioners working on restructuring and insolvency matters, see: Coronavirus (COVID-19)—Restructuring & Insolvency—overview.

What is bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is an insolvency process for individuals. Until 6 April 2016—unlike its corporate equivalent liquidation—only the court could make an individual bankrupt. However, on 6 April 2016, the bankruptcy applications regime came into force replacing debtors' bankruptcy petitions (but not creditors' petitions). Although the change did not affect debtors' petitions presented prior to 6 April 2016, any individual who now wishes to be made bankrupt must make an online bankruptcy application which is determined by the adjudicator (an official within the Insolvency Service), and not by the court.

For further reading, see News Analysis: New bankruptcy applications regime to come into force.

The making of a bankruptcy order—whether by the court or by the adjudicator—frees the

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