Official Receiver & Trustee in Bankruptcy
An explanation of the roles of the Official Receiver & Trustee in administering a bankruptcy order.
The Role of the Official Receiver.
Official Receivers are civil servants within the Governments’ Insolvency Service. Upon making a bankruptcy order, the court appoints an Official Receiver who is primarily responsible for:-
- Investigating your financial affairs and conduct and reporting this to the court. Any evidence of irregularity or criminal activity will be reported.
- Obtaining control of your property and assets of worth.
You are required to fully co-operate with the Official Receiver. Failure to do so can have severe consequences ranging from a delay in bankruptcy discharge to a recommendation for a full criminal investigation of your affairs.
The Officer Receiver will require you to complete a questionnaire similar to the “Statement of Affairs” that you would have already completed if you had petitioned for your own bankruptcy.
The Official Receiver contacts all your creditors, inviting them to prove any claim for a debt held against you.
The Officer Receiver (or an member of their staff) will interview you by phone. You will required to attend for interview in person at the Officer Receiver’s office in the case where:
- You have petitioned your own bankruptcy.
- You have been made bankruptcy before.
- You have recently been trading in business.
The Official Receiver has a wide range of powers and can, where appropriate arrange for:
- Your mail to be redirected to their office.
- A court order for seizure of your passport.
The Official Receiver registers the bankruptcy with the Land Registry and advertises it in:-
- The London Gazette
The London, Edinburgh, and Belfast Gazettes are the official newspapers of record in the United Kingdom. Several legal notices, including insolvency notices, are required by law to be published here.
- One Local Newspaper
The Official Receiver also arranges for your bank account(s) to frozen.
Within 12 weeks of the bankruptcy order, the Official Receiver can arrange for a meeting of the creditors in order to appoint a Trustee. The appointed Trustee is normally a licensed Insolvency Practitioner. If no Trustee is appointed, then the Official Receiver becomes the Trustee.
The Role of the Trustee
When the Trustee is appointed, or the Official Receiver becomes the Trustee, all your assets vest into the control of the Trustee.
The Trustee is primarily responsible for:-
- Disposing of your property, ensuring a fair price is obtained for the benefit of paying your creditors.
- Ensuring the proceeds your sale of your assets is shared out fairly amongst your creditors.