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About

A Bankruptcy Petition is a document filed with the court by a creditor to initiate the bankruptcy process. The petition must be filed with the court and served on the debtor. The petition must contain the name and address of the debtor, the name and address of the creditor, and a statement of the amount of the debt.Next steps

How much does help with Bankruptcy Petition cost?

The cost for a licensed solicitor to help with Bankruptcy Petition is dependent on many factors including the complexity and specific requirements of the case. On average it is expected to range from £180-£250 but in some cases it could cost as much as £350.

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Bankruptcy Petition Solicitors

If someone owes you money and you want to take action against them, you might consider using a bankruptcy petition. This is a necessary step in seeking relief from debts.

To do this, a creditor files a bankruptcy petition with the court against a debtor who owes them money. This petition must include basic information like the debtor's name and address, the creditor's name and address, and the amount of debt owed.

bankruptcy-petition

Presenting a bankruptcy petition can be complex; many people choose to get help from a solicitor.

At Lawhive, our network of bankruptcy petition solicitors can help you file a petition correctly or support you if you are subject to a bankruptcy petition.

Contact our legal assessment team for a free case assessment today.

What is a bankruptcy petition?

A bankruptcy petition is a formal request to the court to declare someone bankrupt and sell their assets to pay off their debts.

How to present a bankruptcy petition

If you're considering presenting a bankruptcy petition, you should first make sure the debt owed to you is at least £5,000 or constitutes a share of debts totaling £5,000 or more.

You should also check if there are any other bankruptcy petitions filed against the debtor.

When you're ready to present your bankruptcy petition, you should fill out the necessary forms and file them with the court to start the process.

Which bankruptcy petition form you use depends on whether you have sent a statutory demand to the debtor, and they have not responded, or if the sheriff or bailiff couldn't recover enough assets. Along with the appropriate form, you should also include:

  • A statement of truth confirming the petition details

  • A declaration confirming the conducted searches

  • Evidence of the owed money.

How do I present the petition to the court?

If the debtor lives in London and owes £50,000 or more, or if they have no fixed abode, you can submit the petition online. Otherwise, you should deliver the bankruptcy petition in person to the county court nearest to the debtor's residence or workplace.

If the debtor owns a business, you should deliver the petition to the court closest to their business address.

How do I serve a bankruptcy petition to the debtor?

To successfully file a bankruptcy petition, you should also serve a copy of the petition to the debtor and submit a certificate of service to the court to confirm you've done this.

How much does a bankruptcy petition cost?

The court fees for a bankruptcy petition cost £1,802, which includes:

  • £1,500 petition deposit for managing the bankruptcy.

  • £302 for court costs.

If you choose to use a solicitor to help file a bankruptcy petition, you should factor in their fees too.

The cost for a licensed solicitor to help with a Bankruptcy Petition depends on many factors including the complexity and specific requirements of the case. On average it is expected to range from £180-£250 but in some cases, it could cost as much as £350.

What happens when a bankruptcy petition is presented?

When a bankruptcy petition is presented the Chief Land Registrar is informed of the petition and the debtor's name is added to the bankruptcy register as pending action. Other creditors may be notified, and the debtor's bank account could be frozen.

Any transactions the debtor engages in from that point may be considered void unless approved by the trustee in bankruptcy or the court.

Can a bankruptcy petition be withdrawn?

A bankruptcy petition can only be withdrawn with the court's permission at the hearing.

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What are the requirements for making someone bankrupt?

To make someone bankrupt, you must be owed either:

  • At least £5,000 or

  • A share of debts totaling at least £5,000.

You need to provide evidence to the court to prove the owed amount.

You can do this by confirming you have sent a statutory demand to the debtor by completing a certificate of service, or you can get a statement from a sheriff or bailiff indicating that you obtained a court judgment for the money and that the sheriff or bailiff couldn't recover enough assets to pay the debt.

How can I check if the debtor has any bankruptcy petitions against them?

Before you present a bankruptcy petition, you must check for any previous petitions against the debtor and complete a written declaration confirming the search results, which will be attached to your petition.

Most petitions are filed in the debtor's local area. However, government departments, file all petitions in London.

To check for petitions presented in London, you can use the public computers at the Rolls Building of the Royal Courts of Justice or the Central London County Court.

To check for petitions outside London, you should contact the county court in the area where the debtor lives.

Can I file a bankruptcy petition if there's already a petition or bankruptcy order against the debtor?

If your search finds an existing petition against a debtor, it's more cost-effective for you to support the petition rather than present your own.

If a bankruptcy order has already been issued, you can't file your petition but can register as a creditor. This means you'll be added to the list of people who are owed money by a debtor and you'll be allowed to vote on decisions at any creditors' meetings.

Do I have to go to court for a bankruptcy petition?

When you present a bankruptcy petition, the court will arrange a date and location for a hearing. At the hearing, the court may:

  1. Stay the petition

  2. Dismiss the petition

  3. Adjourn the hearing

  4. Make a bankruptcy order.

Do I have the right to appeal if a bankruptcy petition is rejected?

If your bankruptcy petition is rejected, you can appeal to the court where you filed your petition.

What to do if a bankruptcy petition has been served on you

If you've been served with a bankruptcy petition you can:

  1. Challenge the petition if you dispute the debt or believe the petitioner hasn't followed the correct procedure.

  2. Reach an agreement with the petitioner to repay the debt.

  3. Consider entering into an Individual Voluntary Arrangement, where you make an agreement with all of your creditors regarding the debts.

  4. Accept bankruptcy.

It's wise to get legal advice if you have been served with a bankruptcy petition to understand which course of action is best for you. Accepting bankruptcy or entering into an IVA comes with financial consequences you should be aware of.

What are the consequences of a bankruptcy order?

Bankruptcy orders are sent to the local Official Receiver's office, and the Land Charges Department is informed. This information is added to the public register and advertised in the London Gazette and local newspapers.

As a result of a bankruptcy order, a debtor may lose their home or business, or they may have to resign as a company director. The debtor's credit rating may also be adversely affected and be subject to bankruptcy restrictions.

How can Lawhive help?

At Lawhive, our money, tax, and debt lawyers are here to help whether you're a creditor looking to recover your debts or looking for help in dealing with a bankruptcy petition that has been served to you.

Dealing with money issues can be tough whether you're a debtor or a creditor, but you don't have to face it alone. To find out how we can help, contact us for a free case evaluation today.

Our legal assessment team is on hand to create a personalised action plan and provide a no-obligation quote for the services of our bankruptcy petition solicitors if you need it.

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