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Other implications of bankruptcy

Are any assets exempt from your bankruptcy?

The role of the Official Assignee is to investigate the full extent of your property, sell or otherwise dispose of your property and distribute the proceeds to your creditors.

The only assets that do not transfer to the Official Assignee are essential assets up to a value of € 6,000 (including vehicles), or more, if the High Court allows.

Any property you acquire during the period of your bankruptcy, transfers to the Official Assignee if and when the Official Assignee claims it and you are under a legal duty to declare such acquired property to the Official Assignee.

What happens if you seek to obtain credit from someone while you are bankrupt?

If you obtain credit of € 650 or more without disclosing your bankruptcy, you are guilty of an offence under the Bankruptcy Act, 1988 as amended.

You should be aware that being bankrupt may affect your credit rating and may influence any information about you held by rating reference agencies such as the Irish Credit Bureau (or the Central Credit Register). This means you may find it more difficult to get credit in the future.

Can you operate a bank account while you are bankrupt?

Yes, you can operate a bank account.  Maintaining a bank account is an essential requirement in the normal course of living and will assist you in vouching your income and expenses. Whilst the Official Assignee notifies financial institutions that bankruptcy legislation does not prevent persons made bankrupt from holding or operating a bank account, it is a matter for the financial institution itself to decide whether it still wishes to keep you as a customer.
 Generally, financial institutions do continue to keep their customers who are made bankrupt, although they may impose conditions on the nature of accounts they may hold.

Can you travel outside the jurisdiction while you are bankrupt?

There is no outright prohibition on you travelling abroad but you should inform the Official Assignee if you intend to do so. However, if it appears to the High Court that you may be leaving the State in order to avoid the consequences of your bankruptcy, you may be arrested.

What happens if your financial circumstances change during your bankruptcy?

If your financial circumstances change you must notify the Official Assignee and the terms of your Income Payment Agreement/Order may be altered, to take account of this. Your financial circumstances will be reviewed on a 6 monthly basis throughout your bankruptcy and you will be obliged to complete an income and expenses form to assist in the assessment at each review.