Bankruptcy advisor

The Enterprise Act 2002


History of Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy laws in England date back to medieval times when a creditor (someone you owe money to) could seize either the body of the debtor (someone who owes money) or his belongings, but not both. When the person was seized, detention was at the creditor’s pleasure, and debtor's prisons were commonplace. Bankruptcy was therefore seen as a criminal offence. The first Bankruptcy Act was in 1542 and there was no prospect of rehabilitation if there was any debt outstanding. It was only in 1861 that the concept of rehabilitation was born with less that 100% recovery of the debt and people were allowed to have a fresh start, however many of the concepts did not change until the mid 1980’s and the Insolvency Act of 1986.

A new approach to Insolvency and Bankruptcy

In 2002 the Enterprise Act came into force, and this had the effect of turning on its head the whole concept of insolvency and bankruptcy. The personal bankruptcy laws were structured to quickly rehabilitate the bankrupt into society with automatic discharge within one year. In reality, providing things are straightforward, this could be as early as five months. The very name 'The Enterprise Act' indicated a positive approach of rehabilitation and a new beginning.

Although bankruptcy is a serious matter, there has never been a better time to petition and declare oneself bankrupt (voluntary bankruptcy and known as a debtor’s petition) and in these current difficult times more and more people are opting to do so. We will guide you through the process and be at your side giving support as required.