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Before you file

Before filing an application for a bankruptcy order against a party who owes you money (a debtor), make sure you:

What you will need

What you need to prepare depends on what you are basing your application on.

If you are filing based on a statutory demand that the debtor did not comply with, prepare the following documents:

Creditor’s Bankruptcy Application

Form PIR-3 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

 

Affidavit in Support of Creditor’s Bankruptcy Application

Form PIR-4 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

 

Affidavit of service of a statutory demand

Refer to Rule 78 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules for more information.

Affidavit of service of the bankruptcy application

Refer to Rule 85 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules for more information.

Affidavit of non-satisfaction of debt

Refer to Rule 86 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules for more information.

If you are filing based on a voluntary arrangement that the debtor did not comply with, prepare the following documents:

Creditor’s Bankruptcy Application

Form PIR-3 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

 

Affidavit in Support of Creditor’s Bankruptcy Application Arising from Default In Connection With Voluntary Arrangement

Form PIR-5 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

 

Affidavit of service of the bankruptcy application

Refer to Rule 85 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules for more information.

Affidavit of non-satisfaction of debt

Refer to Rule 86 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules for more information.

Refer to Section 317 of the IRDA for more information on applications based on a voluntary arrangement.

Note: You must swear or affirm all of the affidavits before a Commissioner for Oaths (CFO). You should only sign the affidavits when you are in the presence of a CFO. Find out how to arrange for CFO services if you are not represented by a lawyer.

Estimated fees

Refer to the Third Schedule of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules for the full list of fees. Examples of some of the fees include:

Item or service

Fee

File a bankruptcy application

$60

File an affidavit

$1 per page (including any exhibits)

Deposit paid to the Official Assignee

$1,850

Note: This table does not include additional fees payable to the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau, such as transmission and processing fees for applications filed through the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau and its handling fees.

When to file

Before you file the bankruptcy application, you must ensure that at least one of the requirements listed in Section 312 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Act (IRDA) are met, in order to show that the debtor is unable to pay the debts.

If you are relying on a statutory demand to show that the debtor is unable to pay the debts, you can file if it is at least 21 days after the service of the statutory demand and the debtor has neither complied with it nor applied to the court to set it aside.

Note: You need to file within 4 months of the service of the statutory demand.

How to file a creditor's bankruptcy application

You may choose to file personally or through a lawyer. If you are represented by a lawyer, the application will be filed by your lawyer.

If you are representing yourself, follow these steps to file your application in the General Division of the High Court.

Step

Result

1. Place a deposit with the Official Assignee

The Official Assignee receives the deposit and and issues a receipt.

2. File the documents via eLitigation

Your application is filed in the court.

3. Collect the endorsed documents

You receive a copy of the application documents that have been endorsed by the court.

4. Serve the endorsed documents on the debtor and the Official Assignee

You inform the relevant parties of your application.

5. File the affidavit of service

You prove to the court that you have served the application on the relevant parties.

1. Place a deposit with the Official Assignee

You will need to place a deposit of $1,850 with the Official Assignee.

Email the Ministry of Law's Finance Department at finance@mlaw.gov.sg to ask for the payment instructions. You will receive an official receipt via email within 4 working days after paying.

2. File the documents via eLitigation

Visit the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau to file the following documents via eLitigation:

3. Collect the endorsed documents

The Service Bureau will notify you via email or SMS of whether your application documents have been accepted by the courts.

If the court accepts your application documents, you will be asked to return to the Service Bureau to collect an endorsed and sealed copy of the documents. This will include the date and time of a hearing that you must attend.

4. Serve the endorsed documents on the debtor and the Official Assignee

Service on the debtor

You need to serve your application on the debtor. This means taking reasonable steps to bring the application to the debtor's attention and making attempts to deliver the sealed copy of the documents to the debtor in person. This is known as personal service. Refer to Rules 79 and 80 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

Note: If personal service has failed, you need to apply to the court for substituted service. Refer to Rule 81 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

Service on the Official Assignee

Within 3 days after filing the bankruptcy application, you need to serve a copy each of the application and the supporting affidavit on the Official Assignee. Refer to Rule 76(2) of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

If you filed the application because the debtor failed to comply with any of their obligations under a voluntary arrangement (under Part 14 of the IRDA), you must also serve a copy of your application documents on the nominee for the voluntary arrangement. Refer to Rule 82 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

5. File the affidavit of service

Before the hearing, visit the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau to file the Affidavit of service via eLitigation. Refer to Rule 85 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

Note: Before you file, you must swear or affirm the affidavit before a Commissioner for Oaths.

After you file

You must attend the hearing on the scheduled date and time. The court will usually schedule this within 6 weeks from the date of filing of the application. Find out what happens at a bankruptcy hearing.

Tip: If you are unable to attend, you must make a request to change the court date, which is subject to the court's approval.

Need help?

The information here is for general guidance as the courts do not provide legal advice. If you need further help, you may want to get independent legal advice.

Find out more

Resources

Related questions

If you are filing a bankruptcy application against a firm, you can generally follow the same steps. For the additional rules you need to follow, refer to Rules 70(2), 70(4) and 80 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules, as well as Sections 307(1)(b), 307(2) and 310(2) of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Act.

Note: A firm and a company are different legal entities. For information on insolvency cases for companies, find out more about company winding up.

If you propose for a private trustee (not the Official Assignee) be appointed to administer the debtor's bankruptcy, you must give written notice of the application, together with a copy each of the endorsed documents, to the proposed private trustee. You must also obtain the propose trustee's consent in writing to be appointed to administer the debtor's bankruptcy.

You must also file an affidavit exhibiting proof that the proposed private trustee is a licensed insolvency practitioner.

Refer to Section 37 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Act and Rule 46 of the Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution (Personal Insolvency) Rules.

2021/07/23

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