If you are going through an insolvency procedure then you will hear a lot about bankruptcy records. There are records that you will have to produce, those that the official receiver will have to produce and those that the trustee will have to keep. This page explains some of the bankruptcy records and their purpose.
Under the Insolvency Act the official receiver has a duty to investigate your affairs leading up to the bankruptcy. As such, he/she will need to ascertain certain pieces of information. From the date of the bankruptcy order you have a duty to deliver up all books, papers and other records which are in your possession or control and relate to your estate and affairs. Further to this the official receiver will have a copy of your statement of affairs or will request one from you. It will also form part of their bankruptcy records.
The official receiver will normally request these records and you may be guilty in contempt of court if you fail to deliver them without a reasonable excuse. The records will usually include, but are not limited to, documents pertaining to possessions, financial transactions and your business.
During the bankruptcy records relating to you but held by others can also be requested. The official receiver can apply for a court order summonsing others to deliver them up. Therefore, if applicable, the official receiver will seek to establish whereabouts of the information relating to your possessions and affairs but are held by others.
Please note: If you are delivering your records to the insolvency office then get a receipt of delivery.
The records that you are required to keep will depend on the type of business that you operate, whether it is a partnership and whether you employ staff. As a minimum you are required by law to keep any information and documents that you may need to help you fill in your tax return or to make a claim.
For the purposes of bankruptcy, you may be subject to a bankruptcy restrictions order if you fail to keep records which account for any loss of property by you or any business carried on by you in the period beginning two years before the presentation of the petition and ending with the date of the application for a bankruptcy restriction order. You may also be subject to a bankruptcy restriction order for neglect of business affairs.
If feel that you could fall short of the record keeping requirements laid upon you by law then you should establish how you may be affected by speaking to a professional adviser.
After you have petitioned for your bankruptcy and prior to receipt of your statement of affairs the official receiver may require information allowing the following information to be entered onto your bankruptcy records:
When the official receiver receives your statement of affairs they will then categorise you as either:
It is the type of case that determines the information that the official receiver will require for your bankruptcy records. If you are classed as type 0 then the official receiver is of the opinion that no further information is required from you and that no interview is necessary. If you are classed as type 1 then the official receiver will require more information from you and a telephone interview will be likely. Type 2 cases are necessary where significant inquires need to be made due to complexities and a face to face interview is more likely.
The official receiver will initiate a case assessment record, which will be used to record important events and decisions concerning a case.
Records will also be kept of court papers, statutory notices, correspondence and information relating to assets.
A record of your bankruptcy will be kept on the bankruptcy register until three months after you are discharged. A record will also exist in the London Gazette as the official receiver administering your bankruptcy is required to advertise your bankruptcy there possibly the local newspaper.
The London Gazette is an official newspaper of the Crown and in many cases its notices are statutory in nature and used in legal proceedings. It contains a wide range of official notices including corporate insolvency and personal bankruptcies. Hence, the London Gazette is widely used by Credit Managers and other such professionals.
Credit Reference Agencies will usually pick up on your bankruptcy. A bankruptcy order will appear on your credit report for a minimum of six years from the date of bankruptcy and longer if the bankruptcy extends beyond this period. Even after discharge the note will remain on the file though you may wish to request that the credit reference agency adds a notice of discharge to your file. A Bankruptcy restriction undertaking or a bankruptcy restriction order will stay on your credit file until it ends.