Over the last few months we have found that there is a overwhelming unmet need for specialist advice and support for clients in Protected Trust Deeds (PTDs) and who are bankrupt in Scotland. It has found many debtors are failing to obtain appropriate advice and representation in relation to:
- Protecting their homes in PTDs and Bankruptcy; and
- Obtaining advice and representation when their PTDs are at risk of failing.
In one case Renfrewshire Law Centre working alongside with GLC's Personal Insolvency Law Unit, was able to make an offer of composition which was accepted by creditors, after an application to eject the debtors from their home had been in front of the sheriff for over a year. The PTD had been granted almost ten years earlier, despite initially only being expected to last three years.
|Alan McIntosh, Project Manager|
There have been other successes, however, with some lenders being prepared to show forbearance to debtors when the client’s circumstances have been explained, including that there have been disability issues in the family. However, even when these lenders are majority lenders in the bankruptcy, this has not always provided a solution and there is a number of on-going issues in such cases relating to technical procedural matters, that may still prevent a satisfactory solution being found.
The reality is personal insolvency law in Scotland is extremely complex and many debtors who are now trapped in solutions are struggling to source the specialist help they require to provide them with advice and assistance. Nearly all of Scotland’s free sector advice services are designed to advise clients on how to enter into bankruptcy and protected trust deeds, often with as we have found disastrous consequences, but there are no specialist services available to help people when things go wrong.
Sadly, all too often the initial advice given to clients was wrong, not impartial and the administration of the case has been flawed and contributed significantly to the risk of the case failing or the debtor losing their home.