The Scottish public has been asked for views on areas of the 2014 bankruptcy reforms that are not working as well as intended.

Following an exercise in seeking feedback by the Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB) over the past year, five of the reforms brought in by the Bankruptcy and Debt Advice (Scotland) Act 2014 have been highlighted by stakeholders as needing some improvement: 

  • the statutory moratorium on diligence, including whether the six week period allowed is sufficient, and whether provisions should be explored similar to those in the UK Breathing Space scheme;
  • the common financial tool for assessing contributions: whether it remains an appropriate approach given the evidential requirements, or what alternative should be adopted;
  • the debtor contribution order, in particular the six week time limit for a trustee to submit a proposal to AiB in a creditor petition bankruptcy;
  • minimal asset process bankruptcy, and the minimum and maximum debt levels that apply; and
  • financial education, including how meaningful the content of the programmes is and whether they fulfil the initial policy intention of increasing financial and budgeting capability.

The consultation also seeks views on two additional areas which have been raised with AiB:

  • the treatment of child maintenance debt in bankruptcy; and
  • the statutory rate of interest applied in bankruptcy;

and it invites respondents to raise any other matters they think should be considered as part of this policy review.

Click here to access the consultation. Responses are invited by 11 February 2020.