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Who will find out I am Bankrupt?

Who will find out about Bankruptcy?One of the things that might be worrying you about Bankruptcy is who will find out. Despite what you may have heard the fact is that very few people will be told.

As with the other formal debt solutions your details will be included in a public register. However it is very unlikely that anyone you know will use this. There is also no need to worry about your name going in the local newspaper.

Is Bankruptcy advertised in the Newspaper?

Since April 2009 the Official Receiver has not been required to advertise bankruptcy in the newspaper. They still have the option to do so. However even if you are self employed it is very unlikely to happen.

BE Tip: If you live in Northern Ireland the rules about advertising bankruptcy in the newspaper are different. A notice that you have gone bankrupt will still be placed in the Belfast telegraph. This will normally happen on the first Friday after your bankruptcy. As such it is more likely that someone will find out about your situation if you live in Northern Ireland.

Your details are listed in Public Register

After you go bankrupt your details will be recorded in the Insolvency Register. This is a formal list of people who are Bankrupt or have started an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA). It is maintained by the Government’s Insolvency Service.

The Insolvency Register is freely accessible via the internet. As such anyone who has an interest in finding out if you are Bankrupt can do so if they wish. Having said that it would be unusual for anyone you know to think to search the Register.

BE Tip: Your name and details are taken off the Register after you are discharged from bankruptcy. This is normally after 12 months. However it will then take a further 3 months for your details to be deleted.

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Will your Landlord or Mortgage Company find out you are Bankrupt?

If you are renting your home your landlord will not normally be told about your bankruptcy. The Official Receiver will generally only get in touch with them if you are in arrears with your rent. As such your home should not be affected as long as you continue to pay your rent on time.

BE Tip: If you rent from a private landlord it is still a good idea to speak to them about your plan to go bankrupt. If they do find out they may be concerned for their property and rent. By speaking to them you have the opportunity to reassure them in advance.

If you are a home owner your Mortgage lender will be informed of your Bankruptcy as they are an interested party. However they will not have a problem as long as you maintain your mortgage payments. They will certainly not ask you to terminate your mortgage early.

Will your Employer find out about your Bankruptcy?

Your employer is not told that you are bankrupt. They could find out if they search for you in the Insolvency Register or carry out a credit check against you. However most employers are unlikely to do either of these things.

The Official Receiver (OR) may ask you for an Income Payment Agreement (IPA). If so you will normally arrange for this to be paid from your bank account. Your employer will not be involved. There is only a risk that the money could be taken directly from your salary if you are being uncooperative with the OR.

The London Gazette Bankruptcy Archive

The date of your bankruptcy, your name and address at the time you were bankrupt will be recorded in either the London, Edinburgh or Belfast Gazette (depending on where you live). This is in addition to your details being included in the Insolvency Register.

Once the entry is made in the Gazette it will never be removed. For this reason even after your details are no longer listed on the Insolvency Register someone can still find out that you were bankrupt in the past. They just need to search the Gazette archives. As with the Insolvency Register searching the Gazette archives is free via the internet.

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