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More than four fifths of people – 82% of those surveyed by insolvency trade body R3 – believe people seek advice on bankruptcy as a way of writing off recklessly accumulated debts.

While this is, in essence, the purpose of bankruptcy, it seems many members of the British public consider it to be a soft option, and would like to see it take longer to restore an individual’s finances.

“Our bankruptcy regime, lasting only a year, is quite lenient compared to other countries,” says R3 president Lee Manning.

“There is a strong feeling that a debtor’s spending behaviour should be factored into the length of the term of bankruptcy.”

He adds that this opinion may have been fuelled in part by stories of celebrities seeking advice on bankruptcy, and perceptions that some distinction should exist between “genuine hardship” and “reckless spending”.

For individuals seeking insolvency advice, bankruptcy is rarely seen as a soft option, and can be an emotionally challenging arrangement to enter into.

However, if you need insolvency advice, our professionals can guide you through the available options, and help you to decide whether bankruptcy, or another form of debt recovery, is the best option to meet your needs.