Bankruptcy is a formal process that enables you to be released from your debts if you cannot pay them.
Risk of being bankrupt
There are two ways in which you can be declared bankrupt.
1. Voluntary (Debtor’s Petition)
We can help you complete the relevant forms and advise for a fixed fee.
2. Involuntary (by Creditor)
We can assist you and advise you of the process for a fixed fee if a debtor owes you more than $5000 and you have a judgment.
There are numerous issues that you must consider when going bankrupt. Our specialist in bankruptcy can walk you through the process and advise you on the following matters:
Statement of Affairs
We can assist you in filling out a comprehensive Statement of Affairs and dealing with the Trustee.
Just because you are declared bankrupt, doesn’t mean all your debts are automatically released. Some debts survive bankruptcy.
Repossession of Assets
We can advise you on what assets may be repossessed and the best way to protect them.
You need permission from the Trustee to travel overseas if you are bankrupt. We can assist you in seeking permission from the trustee to travel overseas.
Credit Rating/Personal Insolvency Index
Your credit rating will be affected if you have judgments against you or are made bankrupt.
Obtaining Finance whilst Bankrupt
You will have difficulties obtaining credit if you are a bankrupt. We can advise you when you are required to disclose your bankruptcy.
Inheritance from a Deceased Estate
There are numerous issues regarding inheritance and if you are a beneficiary of a deceased estate if you are declared bankrupt. We can advise you on these issues and how to protect your inheritance before you are declared bankrupt.
In some circumstances you may be required to pay some superannuation back to the Trustee. However your compulsory contributions are protected and is not divisible amongst your creditors. We can advise you about your superannuation if you are considering bankruptcy.
Role of the Trustee
We can explain to you the role of the Trustee. We can also liaise with the Trustee on your behalf.
Assets Retained and Seized
Upon being declared bankrupt, there are certain assets that you can retain (eg household items, tools worth up to a certain amount). There other assets which can be seized by the trustee (eg motor vehicles, real property and land). We can advise you in relation to what assets you will be able to retain and assets that may be seized by the Trustee. In some circumstances your spouse may also make a claim for a share of real property if they have made a contribution.
Your Income and Employment
We can advise you if bankruptcy will affect your employment. If you are declared bankrupt it may affect:
QBCC and other licences;
Professional associates; and
We can also advise you on the amount you can earn before you are required to contribute part of your earnings to the Trustee.
Discharge (and Extension) & Annulment
Bankruptcy generally comes to an end as a result of either discharge or annulment after 3 years. We can advise you about the process.
Alternatives to Bankruptcy – Personal Insolvency Agreements
There are alternatives to bankruptcy and in some circumstances you can enter into other formal agreements with your creditors. We can advise you regarding this.
Are you owed money?
Bankruptcy is one of many enforcement procedures available to a creditor to recover a judgment debt if the debt is for $5000.00 or more.
The websites at the Federal Court of Australia, the Federal Circuit Court of Australia and the Australian Financial Security Authority, provides valuable information and fact sheets regarding bankruptcy. Please go to the following links to obtain more detailed information regarding bankruptcy:
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you require advice regarding any bankruptcy matter.