Insolvency Service outlines plans for online filing for debtor’s own bankruptcy petitions

The Insolvency Service has confirmed that there are plans for debtors to file online petitions for their own bankruptcy and they won’t need sign off from an insolvency practitioner.

The Insolvency Service believe that it will become easier for debtors to file bankruptcy petitions and that imminent changes to the process will free up the courts’ time.  However, attention will need to be given to ensure there is no abuse of the system.

The Insolvency Service’s new roles are brought about by the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013.  Once the provisions are implemented, an individual seeking the protection of bankruptcy will follow a new process.  A debtor will complete an online application and submit their application to the newly created office of the adjudicator, rather than to the court.  As a result of the changes, the court will only be involved in a minority of cases where an individual applies for bankruptcy. These will be cases involving an appeal or a post-order application. In this way, much valuable court time will be freed up.

Part of the reason for filing online is to allow individual debtors’ easier access to bankruptcy and the removal of the need to attend court, an experience which many find stressful.

Although the process will be made easier for individuals, caution must be raised that the process is not too easy and open to abuse for individuals.  Protection will need to be available to stop people filing vindictive petitions on behalf of other individuals or filing a petition online for themselves and then regretting the submission shortly afterwards.

Should you wish to discuss the above or the merits of bankruptcy or other insolvency options, please feel free to contact us on 0207 186 1144.


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