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MAP bankruptcy is only available in Scotland.

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Minimal asset process (MAP) bankruptcy

MAP bankruptcy is a way to write off debts you can't afford. We can set up and manage your MAP free of charge.

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A minimal asset process (MAP) bankruptcy gives you a fresh start by writing off debts that you can't repay within a reasonable time. 

It's aimed at people with a low income and not many assets, and is cheaper and more straightforward than sequestration bankruptcy. You can only apply for MAP through an approved money advice organisation, like us. Unlike many other companies, we'll set up and manage your MAP free of charge.

Benefits of MAP

  • Although MAP bankruptcy is a formal legal process, you won’t need to appear in court
  • MAP bankruptcy costs £90 to apply for, which is cheaper than sequestration. This fee is payable to the Accountant in Bankruptcy
  • You’ll usually be discharged from your MAP bankruptcy after six months, after which most debts will be legally written off
  • Once your MAP bankruptcy is approved your creditors can't chase you for payment or add more interest and charges to your debts, and they can’t take any court action
  • Most unsecured debts are included in MAP bankruptcy

Risks of MAP

  • Your credit rating will be affected for six years from the day your MAP bankruptcy begins
  • Your bank is likely to close or freeze your accounts and you may only be able to get a basic bank account
  • Bankruptcy can impact some jobs, or lead to dismissal
  • Some private landlords may evict tenants or not renew a tenancy agreement if you become bankrupt
  • Some debts, such as student loans, on-going child maintenance and court fines are not included
  • If you're self-employed, bankruptcy could make it harder to trade and obtain credit for goods and services

Is MAP bankruptcy right for you?

Use our free online debt advice tool to get tailored advice and debt solutions in around 20 minutes.

Get debt help now

MAP bankruptcy is only available if you live in Scotland. A debt relief order (DRO) is a similar solution available in England, Wales or Nothern Ireland, but has different benefits, risks and fees associated with it.

How to apply for a minimal asset process bankruptcy

  1. Find out whether MAP bankruptcy is the right debt solution for you. Use our online debt advice tool or speak to one of our expert advisors.
  2. If MAP is the best way to deal with your debts, we'll ask you to send details of your income and debts, and give you the support you need.
  3. The Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB) is responsible for overseeing all bankruptcies in Scotland. To apply, you'll need to pay them a £90 fee. Unlike other some companies, we won't charge any set up or advice fees.

Common MAP bankruptcy questions

Before you make a decision you should seek expert debt advice to decide whether it's right for you. As an approved organisation we can give you advice on a range of debt solutions, including those only available in Scotland.

MAP bankruptcy is aimed at people with a lower income and not many assets. You'll also need to meet the following criteria:

  • You live in Scotland or have lived in Scotland in the last year
  • You’re on a low income. This can be defined in two ways: Your income is made up solely of income-related benefits such as jobseekers allowance (JSA), or the amount of money you earn covers your essential living costs but you have nothing left over
  • Your debts are more than £1,500 and less than £17,000
  • Your car is worth £3,000 or less
  • Your other assets are worth less than £2,000 in total, with no single item worth more than £1,000
  • You’re not a homeowner or own land
  • You haven’t been bankrupt in the last five years

The easiest way to find out whether MAP is your best option is to use our free, confidential online debt advice tool.

To apply for MAP you'll need to pay a £90 fee to The Accountant in Bankruptcy. They'll accept instalments, but the full amount needs to be paid before you can apply. There are no exemptions or reductions available.

You’ll also need to get advice from an approved money advice organisation such as us. You can’t apply without doing this.

We can help you work out if MAP is the best option for you. If it is, we’ll ask you to send us details of your income, expenses and debts. This will include copies of payslips, bank statements. We’ll check your paperwork and provide all the support you need.

You should also be aware that with MAP bankruptcy your details will be added to a public register, called the Register of Insolvencies (ROI), for a period of five years.

It'll normally last for six months. At this point, your debts are usually written off. However, if your circumstances change or you do not comply, the bankruptcy term can be extended. 

While bankrupt and for a period of six months afterwards you can't borrow more than £2,000, either solely or jointly, without telling the lender you’re bankrupt.

It may affect you in other ways depending on your individual circumstances, for example:

  • Your bank is likely to close your account, and you may find it difficult to open a replacement
  • Bankruptcy can lead to disciplinary action or dismissal in some jobs
  • If you live in private rented housing or you have rent arrears, your landlord may evict you or decide against renewing you tenancy agreement
  • If you’re self-employed, bankruptcy may make it harder to trade, especially if you rely on credit to pay for stock or services

Worried about debt?

Use our free online debt advice tool to get tailored advice and debt solutions in around 20 minutes.

Get debt help now

Helping you become debt free...

“I wish to thank your staff for all the great help they gave me when I was in so much debt.
They were a pillar of support to me.” (Leslie, Essex)

Foundation for Credit Counselling Wade House, Merrion Centre, Leeds, LS2 8NG trading as StepChange Debt Charity and StepChange Debt Charity Scotland. A registered charity no.1016630 and SC046263. It is a limited company registered in England and Wales (company no:2757055). Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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