Bankruptcy can be an option if you have personal debts and ensures your assets are shared out equally amongst creditors, however, it does not ensure they get paid. Anyone with personal debts can become bankrupt if you owe £5,000 or more.
Bankruptcy is a serious matter so before applying you should seek professional advice and assistance, there may be suitable alternatives to bankruptcy in your situation, but it is important you seek this advice before things go too far and professional advisers are no longer able to help.
In Northern Ireland there are several forms to complete begin the process of self-petition Bankruptcy, the first is the Insolvency Rules (NI) 1991 form 6.30. This lays out for the court the request for bankruptcy and includes reasons for the request.
The second form is the statement of affairs, Insolvency Rules (NI) 1991 form 6.31. This form demonstrates all the assets and debts including all the details of the creditors including the amount you owe each one. This form includes an affidavit which will need to be signed before an officer of the court of solicitor to attest to its completeness.
The next step is to pay a deposit towards the cost of administering the bankruptcy and then you need to take the completed forms to the Bankruptcy and Companies Office at the High Court.
Thereafter several options are available to the court depending on the circumstances and the official receiver will be responsible for administering the bankruptcy and protecting your assets.
Generally, after 12 months you are automatically freed from bankruptcy. This period can be shorter if the official receiver concludes their enquiries sooner and files a notice with the court, however, in some cases, this can be postponed and last for longer than 12 months.
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