4. Restrictions

If you’re made bankrupt by the court you have to follow ‘bankruptcy restrictions’. This means you can’t:

  • borrow more than £500 without telling the lender you’re bankrupt
  • act as a director of a company
  • create, manage or promote a company without the court’s permission
  • manage a business with a different name without telling people you do business with that you’re bankrupt
  • work as an insolvency practitioner (an authorised debt specialist)

It’s a criminal offence to break the restrictions - you may be prosecuted if you do so.

You must co-operate with the people managing your bankruptcy, eg provide information they ask for.

How long the restrictions last

Restrictions last until you’re discharged (released) from bankruptcy. This is usually 12 months from the date the court made you bankrupt but it may be longer if you don’t co-operate with the people managing your bankruptcy.

Check the Individual Insolvency Register to find out when the restrictions end.

When the restrictions can be extended

Bankruptcy restrictions can be extended if you don’t carry out your duties under the bankruptcy proceedings or if you’re found to have acted carelessly or dishonestly.

The official receiver will tell you if the restrictions will be extended.

You’ll be asked to agree to a Bankruptcy Restrictions Undertaking to extend the restrictions. If you don’t agree, they’ll ask the court to issue a Bankruptcy Restrictions Order.