You may need to make payments towards your bankruptcy debt from any ‘disposable income’. This is any money left over after your pay essential living costs like food and bills.
The trustee will confirm what counts as essential living costs.
Who does not need to make payments
You do not need to make payments if:
- you qualify for Minimal Asset Process (MAP)
- you've no money left after essential living costs and this is unlikely to change
- your only income is from benefits
The trustee needs to do a financial assessment to confirm this.
How payments are worked out
All trustees and money advisers work this out the same way using the Common Financial Tool.
They'll use the tool to work out if you need to make payments towards your debt and how much.
AiB will use this information to set up a Debtor Contribution Order.
Debtor Contribution Order (DCO)
A DCO states the amount you need to pay during your bankruptcy. The payments usually last for 4 years.
The DCO could last for longer depending on the circumstances of your bankruptcy. The trustee will tell you if this is the case.
You'll still get a DCO if you do not need to make payments. But the amount will be set to zero.
How you make the payments
You usually make the payments to the trustee.
The trustee will do a financial check every 6 months until your bankruptcy ends.
They’ll ask you to complete a ‘current state of affairs form’. This is to check you’re still paying the correct amount. A change in your circumstances could affect how much you pay.
If your financial circumstances change
You need to tell the trustee right away about any change in your circumstances.
Some examples include a change in your:
- relationship status
If you’re unsure if you need to tell the trustee anything you should always check. You can contact them in any way. But they may ask you to confirm the change in writing or complete a form.
The trustee can extend your bankruptcy if you break the rules. This includes if you do not tell them about a change of circumstances.
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