We are one of the two Providers of out-sourced sequestration services to the Scottish Government’s Executive Agency, the Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB). Sequestration is a form of bankruptcy and where the AiB has been appointed to act as Trustee in relation to the bankruptcy case, it will be allocated to one of the two Providers to administer.
This section is designed to assist you, whether you have made an application to the Accountant in Bankruptcy for your own sequestration (and that award has been granted) or you have had an award of sequestration granted by the Court following a petition by a creditor.
Your case has now been passed to us as part of the above contract and although your case will be dealt with on an individual basis, we have detailed below some general advice, terms and links which you may find useful. We understand that the situation you now find yourself in can be distressing and difficult. With this in mind we have set out below some frequently asked questions and our answers. This information is not designed to be specific to your case, but is meant as a general outline of how certain matters are addressed. Your case is dealt with individually and on its own merits.
Frequently Asked Questions
As soon as we are notified by the Accountant in Bankruptcy that the award of sequestration has been made and that your case has been allocated to us to administer, we will write to you asking you to contact this office to arrange a suitable time for an initial telephone interview. If your sequestration is as a result of a creditor petition you will also be asked to complete a Form 10 – Statement of Assets and Liabilities and return it to this office prior to your interview.
The interview is designed to confirm your circumstances and to obtain any further information that we may require from you. We will also during that interview explain to you your rights and obligations as an undischarged debtor and to answer any questions you may have. Your rights and obligations are detailed in the publication, ‘Debtor’s Guide’, which is issued by the Accountant in Bankruptcy and is available on their website at http://www.aib.gov.uk/sites/default/files/Debtor’s%20guide%20-%20Sept%202013.pdf
If you own your home (either solely or jointly), your interest in the share of the property now vests (belongs) to your Trustee by law. This means that your Trustee could sell your home or allow your spouse, partner or a family member to buy out the Trustee’s share.
In the first instance the Trustee will assess the value of your share in the property and discuss and decide with you what is to happen to your share. As all cases are different, your case will be assessed on its own set of circumstances, but in all cases the Trustee will ask for a valuation of the property to be carried out. The Trustee will also contact your mortgage provider to find out the outstanding amount due to them.
We will write to you with your options.
If you do own a property (either solely or jointly) it is advisable that you obtain your own independent legal advice as soon as possible, preferably before bankruptcy has been awarded.
Please note that even after you are discharged from your bankruptcy, your Trustee may continue to deal with your property.
During the telephone interview your income and expenditure will be discussed. It is always helpful to have a note of your total household income and outgoings to hand when you have your interview. You should bear in mind that the Trustee may want you to make a contribution from your income to help towards the cost of your bankruptcy and to repay some of the debts that you owe. If you have a surplus income you will be expected to make a contribution. Your Trustee can ask your employer to take payments directly from your wages.
No contributions will be taken from social security benefits or tax credits. Your circumstances will be assessed on a six monthly basis and your contribution varied if applicable.
If you own any other assets, i.e. life policies, shares, savings, motor vehicles, expensive jewellery etc, these vest in your Trustee (the same as your property if you own one) and therefore your Trustee has the right to realise (sell) these for the benefit of your creditors. You are however allowed to keep items that are necessary for day-to-day living, such as clothes, furniture and household items. You may also keep any tools you need for your trade, up to a value of £1,000 and you may be able to keep a vehicle that you may reasonably require, up to a value of £3,000.
Throughout the duration of your bankruptcy you must advise your Trustee if you acquire any assets, such as an inheritance or an unexpected win eg lottery or the pools.
Your creditors (people you owe money to) are asked by us to submit a claim for the money that they are owed using a statutory form. This can be found on the Accountant in Bankruptcy’s website at http://www.aib.gov.uk/sites/default/files/publications/Resource/Doc/4/0000536.pdf . These claims are assessed and verified once the Trustee has ingathered and sold your assets and if sufficient funds are available to enable a payment to be made to them.
You do not have to deal with your creditors once you are bankrupt. Please send any letters or emails that you receive from them to us, and we will deal with them. Please give them our contact details if necessary, and ask them to contact us directly.
The Consequences of Bankruptcy
Your credit rating will be affected for many years. Your trustee has no control over your credit rating now or in the future. If you want any information regarding your credit rating, or want to discuss any entry on it, please contact the credit rating agencies directly.
Your bank account may be frozen or closed. If you experience any difficulties with your bank account you should speak to your bank in the first instance.
Suppliers of gas or electricity may have concerns with the way they provide services to you in the future and may wish to change the way they receive payment from you. They may insist on the installation of a meter or setting up a pre-payment plan.
Your bankruptcy is recorded on a public register called the Register of Insolvencies (RoI). Details of your bankruptcy will remain on the RoI until one year after the Trustee has completed their duties.
If your trustee considers that your conduct has been dishonest or blameworthy in some way, either before or during the bankruptcy, they will report it to the Accountant in Bankruptcy who may seek to restrict your behavior. This can last between 2 and 15 years. Details of the restrictions are recorded on the Register of Insolvencies.
Further information on bankruptcy restrictions is available in the AiB publication, ‘Bankruptcy Restrictions – Orders and Undertakings’ which can be found on their website at http://www.aib.gov.uk/guidance/publications/debtbankruptcy/bankruptcypostapril08/broguide/broguidepdf
The Accountant in Bankruptcy and her Agents are committed to providing a professional, fair and helpful service to all stakeholders. The Accountant in Bankruptcy’s Customer Charter can be found at www.aib.gov.uk.
However, if you consider you have cause for complaint, you should write to this office, addressing your letter to Christine Convy in the first instance, setting out your concerns. Your complaint will be treated seriously and responded to within 5 working days of receipt.
If you are not satisfied with the way your complaint has been dealt with you can write to The Accountant in Bankruptcy who will investigate further. The Accountant in Bankruptcy’s policy is that Insolvency Support Services Limited should have the first opportunity to resolve any disputes prior to its involvement.
For any further information, or to contact the AiB, please go to their website www.aib.gov.uk