High Court judge warns against bankruptcy proposals

A HIGH COURT insolvency judge has warned that government proposals to introduce a new adjudication system for bankruptcies will fail as a cost-cutting exercise and will strip away the independent judgments that would have been made by the courts.

In an opinion article for Accountancy Age, chief bankruptcy registrar of the High Court Stephen Baister said that proposals to place more responsibility on creditors to warn debtors that they could be made insolvent, plus replacing the courts with an Insolvency Service-based adjudicator – would fail to deal with the disputes that arise between the parties.

“Such matters require the attention of a real judge. The online proceedings will also be secret. There will be no public scrutiny, and presumably there will be no proper judgment,” stated judge Baister in his article.

His article came in response to an earlier piece from Insolvency Service policy director Nick Howard, also published in Accountancy Age.

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