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Insolvency

Whether you or your business is struggling with debt or if you’re owed money yourself, our insolvency solicitors can help you reach an amenable resolution.

Insolvency is when businesses or individuals are unable to repay their debts. It can be a complicated process that involves varied areas of law such as employment, tax, property, family and more.

As insolvency specialists working in one of the UK’s largest full-service law firms, we have the breadth and depth of experience to help you manage a variety of insolvency issues. We can advise you and your business on:

  • Avoiding insolvency if you’re in financial difficulty
  • Going through formal or informal insolvency, restructuring, bankruptcy, or administration
  • Negotiating repayment agreements with your creditors or debtors
  • Recovering money owed by an insolvent individual or company
  • Dealing with Inland Revenue investigations
  • Resolving disputes if you own shares in an insolvent company
  • Protecting family assets if a family member is insolvent
  • Purchasing assets from insolvency estates
  • Structuring transactions to manage the risk of other parties becoming insolvent.

Insolvency is a time-sensitive issue for both debtors and creditors. The longer a debtor leaves repayment, the more punitive restrictions they face. Creditors must act quickly in order to recover as much money as possible from insolvent debtors.

Whatever your situation, it’s vital to secure legal advice and representation as soon as possible to ensure the best possible outcome for your or your business. Contact us online today to find out more about how our insolvency solicitors can help you.

Payment options to suit your needs and circumstances
Extensive experience in advising and acting for creditors and debtors
Offices in 14 locations across the country
Professional and confidential service

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Insolvency Solicitors - More Information
    • What Is Insolvency?
    • Insolvency is a process for managing debt if individuals or companies can’t make repayments when they’re due. It’s intended to help creditors – the people that are owed money – get as much money back as possible.

      Individuals and companies can start insolvency voluntarily, and negotiate Voluntary Agreements with their creditors to arrange the best way of repaying the debt for both parties.

      If not, creditors can force their debtors into insolvency instead. This outcome is much more restrictive and the debtor can have repayments and other controls forced on them.

    • How Does Insolvency Work?
    • Insolvency works slightly differently for individuals and companies:

      Individuals

      If you can’t pay back your personal debts on time, you can go insolvent by applying for bankruptcy, an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA), or a Debt Relief Order (DRO). This will help you organise reduced repayments and write off debts that you’re unable to repay – we’ll advise which is the best option for you.

      In some cases, a creditor can force you into insolvency by applying to the court for a bankruptcy order if you don’t repay your debts. This usually takes at least three to four months.

      Companies

      Companies that can’t pay their debts can also organise voluntary arrangements to manage repayments. Other, more restrictive options in more serious cases include liquidation and administration.

      Creditors can force you into administration in a matter of hours if your debt has lapsed for too long.

      Once both individuals and companies are insolvent, their assets will be sold to repay creditors in a strict order of priority.

    • How Can I Pay?
    • We understand that paying for our services is a concern if you’re already struggling with debt repayments or if you’re owed money by someone else.

      We can accept a variety of different payment methods depending on your situation, including hourly rates, fixed costs, or Conditional Fee Agreements (also known as ‘no win no fee’ agreements).

      We also work with a number of litigation funders who can finance the cost of claiming debt from an insolvent person or company. If the claim is successful, the litigation funder receives a pre-agreed share of the final claim. Litigation funders can also buy your claim outright for a lump sum before litigation begins.

      We’ll talk through your payment options in detail before beginning any work of your behalf and help you decided the best arrangement for you. Call us today on 0370 1500 100 to find out more.

    • Can You Help Keep My Debt Private?
    • Confidentiality is a key concern in everything we do and we appreciate how sensitive debt and insolvency can be, particularly for business people and anyone in the public eye.

      When negotiating with your creditors, we can ensure that any settlements include a confidentiality agreement to help keep the matter private.

      We can also work with colleagues specialising in reputation management to control the impact of any information that has already leaked. See our Personal Brand Reputation page for more information.

    • Meet The Team
    • Our team includes seven Partners and over 20 staff who specialise in professional and confidential services for anyone affected by insolvency.

      We take the time to understand the often complex and sensitive circumstances involved and treat each client with a personal, pro-active, and tailored approach.

      We have extensive experience with advising and acting for both debtors and creditors. As part of one of the largest law firms in the UK, we can handle complex, high-value cases around the country.

      Meet the team

Irwin Mitchell are a very professional, trustworthy and straightforward company to deal with. I would recommend them to anyone."

Frank Clayton, client

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is An Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA)??

An Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) is an agreement that you make with your creditors to pay back all or part of your debts.

To make an IVA, you must work with an insolvency practitioner and give them details about your assets, income, debts, and creditors. They will work out what you can afford to repay and how long repayments will take.

The insolvency practitioner will propose these repayments to your creditors. If the creditors holding 75% of your debt agree, the IVA will start. You make payments to the insolvency practitioner, who divides the money between your creditors.

You will have to pay fees to the insolvency practitioner, but the IVA prevents your creditors from filing a bankruptcy order or taking court action against you. However, the insolvency practitioner can cancel the IVA or even make you bankrupt themselves if you fail to keep up with the agreed repayments.

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Who Can Irwin Mitchell Help With Insolvency Issues?

We can help you if:

  • You or your business are struggling with debt and are facing insolvency
  • Your creditors have already forced you into insolvency
  • Someone in your family is insolvent
  • You are a stakeholder or shareholder in an insolvent company
  • You are a director of an insolvent company facing legal action
  • You are owed money by an insolvent person or company
  • You’re an insolvency practitioner acting as administrators, liquidators or trustees in bankruptcy.

Contact us online to find out more about our insolvency services.

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What Is Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is a declaration that you can’t reasonably pay back all of your debt. You can declare bankruptcy voluntarily or you can be forced to do it by a creditor if you have missed repayments too long.

Once you are bankrupt, a Trustee takes over responsibility for your assets and money. They’ll sell your assets – and potentially your home - to pay back your debts. If you own a business, it will probably be liquidated, its assets sold off, and your staff laid off.

They’ll also decide how much of your income will go towards your monthly debt repayments. You’ll be able to keep a portion of your income to pay for necessities such as housing and food.

Bankruptcy usually lasts a year, after which you will no longer be liable for your pre-bankruptcy debts. It can last longer if you don’t cooperate with your Trustee. Bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for up to six years, making it hard for you to borrow money again in the future.

Bankruptcy is a serious form of insolvency but can sometimes be the best option for resolving your debt problems.

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Awards & Accreditations

We're always proud to be recognised for the work we do for our clients and have been named as a leading firm in the latest legal guides - which provide information and recommendations about lawyers and law firms in the UK.

Private Client Team of the Year - Legal Business Awards 2018 legal-500-2019 chambers-2019 The Times Best Law Firms 2019

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