Brooke BirdBrooke Bird

At Brooke Bird we provide a transparent process to help individuals and their creditors.

Individuals

Going through financial hardship as an individual can be a difficult and lonely experience. Our team are experienced in personal insolvency and work closely with individuals to ensure that they are armed with the best support and advice available when assessing their options.  We continue to work with an individual throughout their bankruptcy to help them restart their lives.

We specialise in helping both debtors and creditors achieve mutually satisfactory outcomes for the payment of debts. If bankruptcy can be avoided, Brooke Bird can help facilitate legal arrangements for debts to be paid either in part or in full under the Bankruptcy Act.

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What is the role of a bankruptcy trustee?

A Bankruptcy Trustee manages your bankruptcy to ensure a reasonable and fair outcome is achieved for all parties involved. If you apply for voluntary bankruptcy you can nominate a registered trustee of your choice. If you don’t nominated a trustee, the Official Trustee (AFSA) is usually appointed. If you are declared bankrupt, you are obliged to provide all of the necessary information and documentation (including books, bank statements etc.) that your trustee asks you for.

What assets are realisable by a bankruptcy trustee?

Real estate, shares, plant and equipment (machinery, vehicles, furniture, fixtures etc), and cash is able to be realised by a trustee for the benefit of creditors. This is subject to some exemptions and thresholds, including but not limited to:

  • Motor vehicles up to a certain value
  • Property held on trust
  • Household appliances and necessary household goods and furnishings
  • Necessary clothing
  • Certain damage and compensation payments
  • Superannuation funds
  • Items of sentimental value, subject to creditor agreement
  • Tools of the debtor’s trade or profession

Will my partners assets be affected?

Your partners assets will be affected if they own an asset with you (eg. If you have a joint bank account or jointly own a house), they are in possession of an asset that’s owned by you or if they own assets that you contributed towards or helped purchase.

Will I lose my house?

Real estate available for realisation by your bankruptcy trustee does include houses. Whether or not your house will be realised will be determined by the amount of equity in the property and whether or not it is jointly owned.

Houses sold prior to bankruptcy for less than market value can be void against the trustee resulting in the transaction being overturned.

What are some of the short term and long term consequences of bankruptcy?

Although you can continue to work and earn while bankrupt, earnings over a certain threshold obtained during the bankruptcy period may be recovered by a trustee. This threshold is determined though a variety of factors including number of dependants, income tax, child support payments etc.  

You must obtain permission from your trustee to travel overseas during the bankruptcy period. Whether or not you will be allowed to travel will depend on complying with your bankruptcy obligations such as paying contributions etc. 

The bankruptcy will be recorded permanently on the National Personal Insolvency Index (NPII) and a record of bankruptcy may also be recorded on your credit report.