2 TO HELP EXPLAIN SOME OF THE CONCEPTS CONTAINED IN BANKRUPTCY, THE INSOLVENCY SERVICE OF IRELAND (ISI) HAS CREATED SOME POSSIBLE SCENARIOS TO ILLUSTRATE HOW THE PROCESS MAY OPERATE IN RESPECT OF A DEBTOR. BANKRUPTCY IS AN OPTION OR REMEDY PROVIDED FOR IN THE BANKRUPTCY ACT, 1988 (AS AMENDED) TO CATER FOR CIRCUMSTANCES WHERE AN INSOLVENT DEBTOR IS UNABLE TO COME TO A VOLUNTARY ARRANGEMENT WITH HIS/HER CREDITORS OR TO AVAIL OF THE 3 OTHER NON-BANKRUPTCY OPTIONS (I.E. A DEBT RELIEF NOTICE, DEBT SETTLEMENT ARRANGEMENT OR PERSONAL INSOLVENCY ARRANGEMENT) PROVIDED FOR UNDER THE PERSONAL INSOLVENCY ACT, WHILE BASED WITHIN THE INSOLVENCY SERVICE OF IRELAND (ISI), THE OFFICIAL ASSIGNEE IN BANKRUPTCY RETAINS HIS INDEPENDENT STATUTORY POSITION UNDER THE BANKRUPTCY ACT 1988, AS ADMINISTRATOR OF BANKRUPTCIES AND HE IS ANSWERABLE TO THE HIGH COURT. IT IS IMPORTANT TO EMPHASISE THAT THESE POSSIBLE SCENARIOS ARE FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY. THE ISI DOES NOT PROVIDE FINANCIAL ADVICE. Date of publication: February 2014
3 CONTENTS BANKRUPTCY SCENARIO DETAILS PAGE 4 Bankruptcy - Equity in family home Illustrates the basic features of bankruptcy, its effect on the family home where there is equity and includes the possible outcome for both secured and unsecured debt. 4
4 SCENARIO 4 BANKRUPTCY APPLICANT ELIGIBLE This sample scenario is designed to illustrate the basic features of bankruptcy, its effect on the home where there is equity and includes the possible outcome for both secured and unsecured debt. 1. ROBERT S STORY Robert is single, an architect and has been unemployed for almost 2 years. His only source of income is social welfare. He has a car, which is valued at 2,000. Robert bought his home ten years ago and is held in his sole name. It is worth 270,000, and the outstanding mortgage is 240,000. Robert also bought a buy to let property in early 2007 for 230,000 which is currently worth 90,000. It is unrented as it is in an unfinished housing estate. Robert also has 10,000 in unsecured debt consisting of a Personal loan. His monthly debt commitments are as follows: Mortgage repayment on his PPR of 1,544 Mortgage repayment on buy to let property of 1,480 Unsecured debt repayments of 220 He has attempted to enter into a Personal Insolvency Arrangement [PIA] but was unable to obtain agreement from his creditors. Robert is unable to pay his debts in full as they fall due and acknowledges he is insolvent. Robert wishes to petition to adjudicate himself bankrupt. Page 4 of 12
5 2. ROBERT S CURRENT INSOLVENT POSITION Assets Value Loan Monthly Income Family Home 270, ,000 Net Income 950 Buy to Let Property 90, ,000 Car 2,000 Total 362, ,000 Total 950 Debts Monthly expenses Secured debts Total Set Costs1 1,045 Family Home mortgage 240,000 Rent/Mortgage2 1,544 Buy to Let mortgage 230,000 Childcare Costs - Unsecured debts Reasonable Living Expenses 2,589 Personal loan 10,000 Total 480,000 Buy to Let Mortgage Repayments 1,480 Total expenses before unsecured debt repayments Deficit prior to meeting unsecured debt obligations [ 4, ] 4,069 (3,119) 3. ELIGIBILITY Robert believes he is eligible for Bankruptcy because Robert is unable to meet his obligations to his creditors. Robert has considered whether his circumstances could be more adequately dealt with through a Personal Insolvency Arrangement [PIA] and Debt Settlement Arrangement [DSA] with regard to the nature and value of his affairs but he was unable to agree same with his creditors. Accordingly Robert will need to provide an affidavit proving this to the satisfaction of the Court. Robert must accompany the petition with a Statement of Affairs 3 which shows that his debts exceed his assets by 108,000. [A minimum shortfall of 20,000 is required.] 1 The Official Assignee will have regard to the tables in the ISI "Guidelines on a reasonable standard of living and reasonable living expenses", available on the website ( Robert's circumstances meet those covered by Table 2 One adult household, vehicle of the Guide (One adult, vehicle 1,045.48). For illustrative purposes and ease for the reader, the RLE figure is rounded to 1, The Official Assignee will assess the reasonableness of mortgage, rent and/or childcare payments in accordance with the Guidelines on a reasonable standard of living and reasonable living expenses". 3 A Statement of Affairs is a document setting out the individuals assets, liabilities, income and expenditure at adjudication. Page 5 of 12
6 4. DEBTOR JOURNEY TO ADJUDICATE HIMSELF/HERSELF BANKRUPT Pay fee Complete documents Get documents stamped Get Court date Declared bankrupt Meet Official Assignee Statutory Sitting Next three years Discharged Transfer 650 to the Official Assignee in the Bankruptcy Division of the ISI, either electronically or using an interbank transfer. You should the Bankruptcy Division at to confirm your lodgement and attach a scanned copy bank lodgement confirming your payment. We will then forward a receipt to you by . You must produce this receipt when issuing the petition at the Office of the Examiner of the High Court. The relevant account details are set out at Appendix 1: Official Assignee s Account Details. Prepare Petition, which must be verified by Affidavit and a Statement of Affairs. Both the Affidavit and Statement of Affairs must be sworn. Please read carefully the notes for completion of forms at The above documents must be stamped. Stamp Offices are located around the country, details of which can be found on: The necessary stamp duty must be paid and currently it is 190 for the Petition and 20 for the Affidavit. File the stamped documents and Statement of Affairs in the Examiner s Office. You must bring the receipt for the 650 payment to the Official Assignee with you. You will be provided with a Court date once the Examiner s Office is satisfied that all of your papers are in order for submission to the Court. At the Court hearing the Judge, if satisfied that all qualifying requirements have been met, will make an order adjudicating you bankrupt. Normally you will be served with a copy of the Order of Adjudication (Bankruptcy Order) and Warrant of Seizure by the Bankruptcy Inspector in the Bankruptcy Division of the ISI on the same day. An appointment will be arranged for you to attend the ISI. You will be interviewed about all of your assets and debts. You must fully co-operate with the Official Assignee and his staff in the administration of your estate. Place advert in Iris Oifigiúil & a national daily newspaper* publicising your bankruptcy and the date of your statutory sitting in the High Court. Your creditors may attend the sitting and submit claims or send same to the Bankruptcy Division of the ISI. Periodic reviews (every 6 months) of your financial circumstances and ongoing obligation to co-operate with the Official Assignee and his staff in the administration of your estate. Automatic discharge from bankruptcy after 3 years. Ownership of any unsold property or other assets remain with Official Assignee. If an Income Payment Order/Agreement has been made in your case, you must continue to comply with this for up to 5 years from date of Order/signing of Agreement. * The Companies (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013 contains a provision which provides an alternative to the requirement to advertise details of a petition for bankruptcy in a national newspaper. The provision provides for a person to publish details of the bankruptcy on the ISI website, at no cost. Page 6 of 12
7 5. DEBTOR JOURNEY TO BECOMING BANKRUPT The following process was drafted in consultation with the Examiner s Office and reflects the documentary requirements of that office in relation to a bankruptcy application. The ISI Bankruptcy Division a) Robert (the applicant) will lodge 650 electronically with the Bankruptcy Division of the ISI, for which he will get a receipt (details of this account are available in Appendix 1). You should the Bankruptcy Division at to confirm your lodgement and attach a scanned copy bank lodgement confirming your payment. We will then forward a receipt to you by . You must produce this receipt when issuing the petition at the Office of the Examiner of the High Court. The Examiner s Office b) Robert or his solicitor will then prepare a Petition and a Statement of Affairs (further details at step (e) below. Both completed forms must be verified by Affidavit. These forms together with other relevant forms are available on the Courts Service website ( see Rules of Superior Court (Bankruptcy) 2013 Appendix O - and the ISI s website for completion by the applicant or their solicitor. The Affidavit sworn by him must include a statement that he has made reasonable efforts to reach a satisfactory arrangement with the creditors relating to his debts. The Statement of Affairs details your his property, income and liabilities. Notes to aid in the completion of the forms are available on the ISI website. c) The Petition and Statement of Affairs are usually sworn before a Commissioner for Oaths or practising Solicitor. d) The next step is he takes the completed Petition, Statement of Affairs and Affidavit forms and go to his local Stamp Office in his local Court district and pay the necessary stamp duty on them. A list of Stamp Offices around the country can be found here : ie/offices.nsf/webcobycounty?openview e) After he has paid the necessary stamp duty, he can submit your completed forms to the Examiner s Office. He can do this in person or by post to the Examiner s Office. (Phoenix House, Phoenix St North, Smithfield, Dublin 7. It is his responsibility to ensure that all your papers contain information that is true and accurate. Page 7 of 12
8 He should submit the following list of documents to the Examiner s Office together with the receipt for the 650 lodgement paid to Official Assignee s Office in the Bankruptcy Division of the ISI. 1. The Petition (Form no. 13, Appendix O, Rules of The Superior Courts) with accompanying Affidavit sworn by him, plus 3 copies. There is stamp duty due on the Petition of 190. There is stamp duty of due on an Affidavit. 2. His Statement of Affairs (Form no. 23, Appendix O, Rules of The Superior Courts) plus 3 copies. Both the Statement of Affairs and Affidavit must be sworn by a Commissioner of Oaths or practising Solicitor (a nominal fee may apply). In addition to the above documents, he will also be required to attach the following (partially completed) forms (e.g. name inserted) which will be fully completed after he is formally declared bankrupt: 3. Order of Adjudication (Form no. 15 Appendix O, Rules of The Superior Courts) and 3 copies. There is no stamp duty due on this form. 4. Warrant of Seizure (Form no. 46 Appendix O, Rules of The Superior Courts) and 3 copies. There is no stamp duty due on this form. 5. Notice of adjudication and Statutory Sitting (Form no. 19 Appendix O, Rules of the Superior Courts) and 3 copies. There is no stamp duty due on this form. f) When the relevant papers have been accepted by the Examiner s Office he will be given a Court hearing date by them. g) Dates are allocated based on the number of applications on the bankruptcy list and other factors. h) Once he has been given a Court date he must attend Court on that date this will take place in the Four Courts in Dublin. The Court number will be available in the Court legal diary, available on the Courts Service website i) The process to apply for his bankruptcy remains private and confidential until Robert has been adjudicated bankrupt. From this point court documents are available in the Examiners Office for public inspection. Page 8 of 12
9 Appearance at the High Court j) At the Court appearance if the Court is satisfied that all of his papers are in order, the Judge will adjudicate him bankrupt. k) The Court may advise him to make contact with the Bankruptcy Inspector on the day of his adjudication to progress his case. l) He is required to attend his statutory Court sitting in order to notify his creditors of his bankruptcy. He must undertake to pay the costs of placing an advertisement in Iris Oifigiúil and one national daily newspaper* in order to notify creditors of his bankruptcy and the date of his statutory Court sitting. m) When the Court adjudicates him bankrupt, ownership of all his property will transfer to the Official Assignee including his interest in the family home. n) His unsecured creditors can no longer seek repayment directly from him. They must make a claim to the Official Assignee and all correspondence should be forwarded to him o) His secured creditors can: rely on security (i.e. sell property or allow mortgage be paid off) and not claim in bankruptcy abandon security and claim for full debt in bankruptcy sell or value their security and claim for the debt shortfall in the bankruptcy. The ISI Bankruptcy Division p) The Official Assignee will negotiate an Income Payment Agreement or seek an Income Payment Order for the surplus of his income over his Reasonable Living Expenses. This agreement order will last for a period of up to 5 years. q) He will be automatically discharged from bankruptcy in 3 years. r) Ownership of any property or assets which are unsold remain with the Official Assignee after he is discharged, until they are sold. * The Companies (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013 contains a provision which provides an alternative to the requirement to advertise details of a petition for bankruptcy in a national newspaper. The provision provides for a person to publish details of the bankruptcy on the ISI website, at no cost. Page 9 of 12
10 6. POSSIBLE OUTCOME FOR ROBERT FROM BANKRUPTCY Robert has now been adjudicated bankrupt and all his property is now vested in the Official Assignee. FAMILY HOME The home has a value of 270,000 and there is an outstanding mortgage of 240,000. There is therefore 30,000 equity in the home. Robert s home is now vested in the Official Assignee and as such any equity belongs to the Official Assignee. As Robert s residence is not a family home as defined in the Family Home Protection Act 1976 as amended1 the Official Assignee will not have to apply to Court for an order to sell the property. The Official Assignee will sell the house for the benefit of the creditors. For the purposes of this scenario it is estimated the costs associated with selling the property are 5,000. The Official Assignee will allow a reasonable rent for Robert for his accommodation cost. BUY-TO-LET PROPERTY The Official Assignee will not pay the mortgage in respect of the property. The lending institution may on foot of its mortgage agreement appoint a receiver to manage the property. On the basis that there is no equity in the property and the bank prove the security to the satisfaction of the Official Assignee he will surrender possession to the bank where no receiver has been appointed. For the purposes of this scenario we assume the Official Assignee surrenders possession to the bank and the bank values its security at 90,000 and claims for the shortfall of 140,000 in the bankruptcy. OTHER ASSETS Robert will be able to keep his car and household furniture valued at 4,000 as under Bankruptcy Law he is entitled to retain personal goods up to a cumulative value of 6,000. INCOME The Official Assignee would normally seek an Income Payment Agreement shortly after adjudication for the surplus of Robert s income over his Reasonable Living Expenses. However, as Robert s only source of income is social welfare payments no income payment will be sought by the Official Assignee 2. Robert s circumstances will be reviewed every six months during the bankruptcy. If Robert s income changes the Official Assignee will then seek to put an Income payment order in place which can last up to five years. For the purposes of this scenario it is assumed that Robert finds alternative accommodation at a monthly rent of 500. The unsecured creditors will avail of 15,500 (See Appendix A) as a final distribution of the estate, and Robert has no repayment obligation for the remaining unsecured debt. Robert will be 1 Family Home Protection Act 1976 defines a family home as being a home in which a married couple reside and includes a shared home as defined by the Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act Section 85D(4) Bankruptcy Act, 1988 Page 10 of 12
11 automatically discharged from bankruptcy after three years once he has fully cooperated with the Official Assignee. Robert s position before and after Bankruptcy Assets Before Bankruptcy Dividend Debt write down After OA Income Payment Order Family Home 270,000 - Repayment % Buy to Let Property 90,000 Car 2, Total 362, Debts Secured debts Family Home 240,000 Buy to Let Property 90,000 Unsecured debts Personal loan 10,000 ( 1,033) ( 8,967) 10% Buy to Let Property 140,000 ( 14,467) ( 125,533) 10% Bankruptcy Fees ( 9,500) Total (100%) 480,000 25, ,500 Deficiency/Surplus (118,000) 800 The Official Assignee deducts the following fees from the bankruptcy estate [the debtor is not liable for these fees] prior to making a distribution: Administration Fee 2,000 Realisation Fee 7,7502 Distribution Fee 500 Total Fee 10,250 1 We assume the car depreciates 1,200 over the life of the bankruptcy. 2 This is calculated based on a sliding scale on the gross amount before selling costs as follows: Administration Fee 0%, the next 100%, the next 50% and the balance up to 1m at 15%. Page 11 of 12
12 7. ROBERT S POSITION AFTER MEETING HIS DUTIES AND OBLIGATIONS UNDER BANKRUPTCY a) Robert s unsecured debt have been discharged. b) Robert will have repaid 15,500 of his unsecured debts and the remaining 134,500 is discharged. This represents a 10% return for the unsecured creditors based on amounts outstanding prior to Robert been adjudicated bankrupt. c) Robert is solvent. d) After three years Robert will be automatically discharged from bankruptcy. The Official Assignee may object to automatic discharge where the individual has failed to co-operate or has failed to disclose assets. e) Robert s accommodation costs / mortgage repayments are reasonable as assess by the Official Assignee having regard to the ISI Reasonable Living Expenses Guidelines. f) Should an income payment agreement be put in place the agreement shall last 5 years after it is commenced or earlier if agreed. 8. APPENDICES Assets Realised Appendix A: Dividend Payment to Unsecured Creditors Family Home 30,000 Less associated Selling Costs ( 5,000) Total 25,000 Income Contribution 0 x 60 months 0 Total Income in Estate 25,000 Dividend Calculation Total Income in Estate 25,000 Less Costs and Fees ( 9,500) Available to unsecured Creditors 15,500 Unsecured Creditors - Dividend Paid Percentage Return Personal loan 10,000 1,033 10% Buy to Let Property 140,000 14,467 10% Total 150,000 15,500 Page 12 of 12
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