Bankruptcy and Annulment

Bankruptcy can be a new start. It can also be stressful, complicated and dangerous, both to the debtor and the debtor’s associates and family. Whether you are threatened with bankruptcy proceedings, or you have issues that have arisen out of your own bankruptcy or the bankruptcy of someone else, we can give you professional advice, help you understand your rights, fight your corner or conduct negotiations.

We can help contest bankruptcy proceedings where you dispute the debt or need time to pay. We can also work with trusted insolvency practitioners to ensure you are given advice on alternatives to bankruptcy. It is very important to seek help at an early stage – the sooner you obtain professional advice on your situation, the more options you will have.

Likewise, if you jointly own assets or are in business with someone who faces bankruptcy, you will want to ensure your interests are protected. Getting professional advice up front is the best way to avoid unexpected – and often expensive – issues arising later on.

If you have already been made bankrupt, that is not necessarily the end. Sometimes – particularly if you act fast – it may be possible to set aside a bankruptcy order. Alternatively, where you have equity in your home or other assets, or where you are able to raise money to pay of your debts, you may want to consider an annulment.

Obtaining an annulment will involve paying your debts in full, but it will also mean you are treated as though you never went bankrupt. Where you have assets, an annulment will usually be much more cost effective than letting a trustee in bankruptcy sell your property.

Following bankruptcy, a trustee may be appointed and may seek to bring claims against associates and family members, perhaps alleging transactions have occurred at an undervalue or that preferential payments have been made. Because we also act for trustees in bankruptcy, we understand these claims and the tactics involved. We will give you pragmatic advice on your options, and can act on your behalf in court proceedings or negotiations.

We can also advise where issues arise over a trustee in bankruptcy’s fees, as we have experience working for creditors, debtors and trustees in that scenario.

For creditors, bringing bankruptcy proceedings can be a good way of getting payment from debtors. In many cases, bankruptcy petitions may be covered by our Fixed Fee Debt Recovery Scheme.  We can also help creditors if they end up in dispute with a trustee in bankruptcy.

Case Studies

  • Successfully opposing an HMRC petition for unpaid tax, when our client’s accountant had made a mistake and the tax was not actually due.

  • Acting for the wife of a bankrupt in relation to a claim property was transferred to her at an undervalue. By demonstrating mistakes in the trustee’s position, our client successfully settled the claim for a fraction of its original value.

  • Obtaining an annulment for a debtor in contested court proceedings, after a previous annulment application had already been unsuccessful and they faced eviction. This included obtaining a substantial reduction in the trustee’s costs.


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