Bankruptcy Living Expenses Guide
A living expenses budget is a critical part of your bankruptcy application. The Official Receiver (OR) will use it to work out if you can afford to make payments towards your debts.
Jump to article contents:
- How to complete your Living Expenses Budget
- Get a free copy of our Living Expenses Guide
- How to use the Guide
- What if you are living with a Partner?
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How to complete your Bankruptcy Living Expenses budget
When putting together a Bankruptcy Living Expenses budget you must ensure you list all the items you spend money on each month.
Many of your expenses such as your rent, mortgage and utility bills are easily identifiable because they are fixed. Others will be more difficult to quantify because they are variable such as food and car maintenance.
It is very important that you ensure your budget is comprehensive. Remember to include any expenditures that you only pay for once a year such as car insurance. Divide the annual cost by 12 to get the monthly budget.
When completing your living expenses remember to include things that might occur just once a year like car insurance.
Get a free copy of our Living Expenses Guide
Our Living Expenses Guide gives a comprehensive list of the expenses you should include in your monthly budget. It also gives recommendations regarding the amounts that the Official Receiver will accept in each category.
The Guide gives hints and tips about the limits you should stay within to ensure your expenses are acceptable to the Official Receiver.
The Guide is free. To get a copy click the “Download Living Expenses Guide” button at the top right of this page (or at the bottom if you are using your mobile).
How to use the Bankruptcy Living Expenses Guide
The Guide must be used for guidance purposes only. This is because there is no “one fits all” living expenditure budget. It is important that the items and amounts you include are sufficient for your needs.
If there are legitimate reasons why you spend more than the amounts suggested in the guide you should use your own figures. However you must be prepared to justify these.
Remember that the Official Receiver works to strict expenditure guidelines. If you exceed these and are not able to give an acceptable reason the excess will not be allowed.
The Official Receiver may reduce or reject any of the expenses you have included. If this is the case the amount you are required to pay towards your debts each month could increase.
What if you are living with a Spouse or Partner?
If you are living with a spouse or partner it is important that you complete an expenses budget for the whole household.
The requirements of your partner and any dependent children in terms of things like housekeeping and clothing must be included. You should make sure you add their personal expenses such as mobile phones and transport costs.
If your partner has debts of their own do not include a budget for paying these. They will only be allowed to maintain the payments from their share of any household disposable income.
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