Consultation over bankruptcy legislation plans

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People with experience of debt and bankruptcy are being asked for their opinions on plans to reform bankruptcy legislation by the Scottish Government.

The Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee is today asking for the views of people affected by debt and bankruptcy on proposals to improve debt advice, relief and management.

The Bankruptcy and Debt Advice (Scotland) Bill, which was introduced to the Scottish Parliament on June 11, also sets out how to secure the best return for creditors and make sure that the people who are in debt and can pay, should pay.

Some of the aspects that the committee would like opinions on include the provision of compulsory advice from an approved money adviser for anyone accessing a statutory debt relief or debt management product; the use of a financial tool to calculate contributions to be made by a debtor from surplus income and the introduction of a 120 day timeframe for creditor claims.

Pressure

Murdo Fraser MSP, committee convener, said: “We are aware of the financial hardship and pressure faced by many people.

“This legislation proposes a range of measures aimed at ensuring people get access to the right advice and information and are aware of the options available to them on debt and bankruptcy.

“There are a range of reasons why people get into financial difficulty and the committee is interested in hearing from individuals that have been affected by bankruptcy along with organisations and charities which support people in this area.

“It is right that those that can pay their debts do so and the committee will look at the detail behind the proposals to determine if they provide the right balance between debtor and creditor.”