On 14 July 2015, the Bankruptcy (Amendment) Bill 2015 (the “Bill”) was passed in Parliament. It is not yet in force. The Bill will amend the Bankruptcy Act to create a more rehabilitative regime for bankrupts and ensure better utilisation of public resources.
When the Bill comes into force, it will effect the following changes to the Bankruptcy Act:
- The minimum debt which must be owed before a person may be made bankrupt will be increased from S$10,000 to S$15,000.
- Banks, finance companies and large undertakings will be required to appoint a private trustee to administer the bankruptcy when applying to make a debtor bankrupt.
- There will be a new differentiated discharge framework where bankrupts can be discharged at fixed exit points.
- Bankrupts who fail to make certain payments in full prior to discharge will have their records permanently kept on a publicly available register maintained by the Official Assignee, enabling prospective creditors to make an informed decision when extending credit to such individuals.
- There will be a new expedited bankruptcy application process which allows a creditor to file a bankruptcy application before the expiry of the statutory demand (21 days after the statutory demand is served) if there is a serious possibility that the debtor’s property, or the value of the debtor’s property will be significantly diminished.