Bankruptcy Order and Indiviual Voluntary Arrangement Register

Last Updated
August 19, 2010

Note: The following information has been reproduced from the Insolvency Service web site.

The following information explains how to search the individual insolvency register for records of bankruptcy orders and individual voluntary arrangements.

What records are held on the register?

The register contains records of bankruptcy orders and individual voluntary arrangements in England and Wales. The information held on the register database includes the bankrupt’s name, last known address, details of the bankruptcy order or voluntary arrangement and, where known, the bankrupt’s date of birth, occupation and trading details.

How to search the register

You can choose from one of the following methods:

1. On-line

You can search the database on-line with just the surname (or even part of the surname) of the individual and the search can be of the whole of England and Wales, or the area covered by an individual Official Receiver’s office. How to make a free search of the register You will be given the option to print the results.

2. Local Official Receiver’s Office

You can visit your local Official Receiver’s office Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm. Please check your phone book for details of your nearest Official Receiver’s office or click here for further information. Alternatively you can call The Insolvency Service Central Enquiry Line on 020 7291 6895. You will receive a report of any records that match your request. If there is no match for your request, you will receive a report stating “no match found”. We will normally respond to your request within 7 working days of receipt. If you would like further information about the individual insolvency register click here. There is no charge for the search service.

Details you need to provide

  • Your full name and address
  • As much detail as possible about the individual to be searched:
    • name(s) and address(es)
    • if known: date of birth or approximate age, occupation and/or any trading details.

The more information you give, the easier it will be to distinguish between individuals on the register who have the same or similar names.

What you will receive

  • A report from the register of any records which match your request.
  • If there is no match for your request you will receive a report stating ‘nomatch found’.
  • Requests by post or fax will be returned by post, normally on the day

of receipt.

How long do records remain on the register?

Bankruptcy records usually remain on the register for five years from the date of the order. This period will be longer if there is no automatic discharge from bankruptcy or the discharge has been suspended.
If a bankruptcy order is cancelled because the debts have been paid or a voluntary arrangement has been approved, the record of the order will be removed from the register two years after the date of cancellation. If a bankruptcy order has been cancelled on the grounds that it ought not to have been made, or a voluntary arrangement has been revoked, the record will be removed from the register immediately. Individual voluntary arrangements remain on the register for two years after the date of ei ther completion or termination of the arrangement.

Records of company liquidations and disqualified directors

The individual insolvency register does not have details of company liquidations, or company directors who have been disqualified. Details of these are available from: The Registrar of Companies Companies House Crown Way Maindy CARDIFF CF4 3UX Tel 02920 388588 The disqualified directors register is also on the Internet: Details of bankruptcies in Scotland and Northern Ireland can be obtained from:


The Accountant in Bankruptcy* Companies House 37 Castle Terrace Edinburgh EH1 2EB Tel: 0131 473 4600 Fax: 0131 473 4737


The Insolvency Service* Fermanagh House Ormeau Avenue BELFAST BT2 8HY Tel: 02890 251441 Fax: 02890 548555 * There may be a charge for these search services.

Your local official receiver’s office

Please check your telephone directory for details of your nearest official receiver’s office, or call The Insolvency Service Central Enquiry Line on 020 7291 6895

Where to go for further information

You can contact The Insolvency Service Central Enquiry Line for general enquiries on insolvency matters on 020 7291 6895; or e-mail: For further copies of any Insolvency Service publications please contact your local Official Receiver’ office; or The Insolvency Service Publications Order Line on 0121 698 4241; or write to: The Insolvency Service (Publication Orders) Records Management 4th Floor East Ladywood House Birmingham B2 4UZ All Insolvency Service publications appear in full on our website You can download or order them from the site. Some of them are available in Urdu. This information provides general information only. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate, but it is not a full and authoritative statement of the law and you should not rely on it as such. The Insolvency Service cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions as a result of negligence or otherwise.

Relevant Articles

Related Articles
Popular Articles in Bankruptcy