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i This solution is only available in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

How to go bankrupt

How much does it cost to go bankrupt? Bankruptcy fees

21 May 2020 - we've updated this page to reflect changes to the conditions for MAP bankruptcy in line with new Scottish legislation.

It costs money to go bankrupt. The fees and administration costs vary depending on where you live in the UK.

A lot of our callers ask how to apply for bankruptcy. You’ll need to submit your bankruptcy forms along with some fees. The cost of bankruptcy differs depending on where you live.

Bankruptcy costs and fees in the UK

In England and Wales:

  • the application fee is £130 and
  • the bankruptcy deposit is £550

In Northern Ireland:

  • the court fee is £151
  • the bankruptcy deposit is £525, and
  • there is a solicitor’s fee of approximately £7, depending on your solicitor

If you live in Northern Ireland and you‘re on a low income or receive certain benefits, the court fee may be waived. Whatever your circumstances, the bankruptcy deposit always has to be paid.

Once you’ve petitioned for bankruptcy, the official receiver assigned to deal with your bankruptcy will look through your finances and decide if you need to pay anything towards your debts. You may have to pay a monthly contribution towards your debts for up to three years. This is called an ‘income payment arrangement’ or IPA. It’s payable if you have available income of more than £20 per month after paying your household bills and essential living costs.

The official receiver won’t make you pay anything towards your bankruptcy if you can’t afford to, and they’ll always leave you with enough money to live on each month.

If you have any valuable items, such as property, a vehicle, expensive items of jewellery or savings, the official receiver may arrange for them to be sold, and the money generated will be used to pay back some of your debts.

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Bankruptcy costs in Scotland

  • Sequestration (Scottish bankruptcy): the Accountant in Bankruptcy fee is £150, at least until the end of September 2020. This fee may be reduced to £0 if you receive certain benefits, even if those benefits are not your sole income
  • Minimal assets process (MAP) bankruptcy: £50 application fee, at least until the end of September 2020. This fee may be reduced to £0 if you receive certain benefits, even if those benefits are not your sole income

In Scotland, the Accountant in Bankruptcy may order you to make a payment each month for up to four years after sequestration. This is called a ‘debtors contribution order’ and is based on your ability to pay. You won’t be asked to pay anything after MAP bankruptcy.

Get free bankruptcy advice

Going bankrupt is a big step to take and requires expert debt advice. If you’re considering bankruptcy, use our online debt advice tool, which will provide you with the best solution to your debt problem.

Or, if you’d prefer to speak to us, call our advisors (free from all landlines and mobiles).

"They were so kind, they listened patiently and helped me through the process" Alison, Kent