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Annual Report 2009

Consultation papers and reports

Annual Review of Insolvency Practitioner regulation
The IS was invited to and made some comments on the IS draft review. The IPC welcomed the intention of the IS to put its authorisation function at arm’s length from its overarching regulatory role. A number of other amendments were suggested.

Encouraging Company Rescue
The IPC responded to the IS consultation launched in June aimed at improving further the rescue culture, giving struggling but viable companies a greater chance to succeed, thus saving jobs where possible and providing better returns for all creditors. The IPC supported the proposed introduction of a moratorium for larger companies entering a CVA.

Debt Management Schemes – delivering effective and balanced solutions for debtors and creditors
The Ministry of Justice published consultation paper CP09/09 on 18 September. Together with BIS and the IS it proposed three options: the status quo; best practice codes and other non-statutory regulation or commence the powers in the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act (TCEA) 2007 to introduce statutory repayment plans. The IS responded to the MoJ questionnaire by the due date, favouring a variant of the second option.

OFT market study into corporate insolvency
The IPC was invited to a meeting with the OFT on 18 November to discuss the study which aimed to look at the structure of the market, the appointment process for IPs and any features in the market which could result in harm, such as higher fees or lower recovery rates for certain groups of creditors. The IPC gave its views regarding fees, complaints, regulation, creditors, the appointment process, the charging process, market share, structure and developments.

The IVA Standing Committee
The IPC continued to attend the Committee an observer. During the year the IPC Chairman attended 5 meetings of the main committee and two meetings of its Market Information sub-committee. Another IPC member attended a third sub-committee meeting in his place. A total of 8 meetings in all were attended. The IPC continued to press for more and better statistics on IVAs and, particularly, pressed for fair treatment of equity in family homes during the course of an IVA. A Debtor’s Guide was also produced during the year – another publication that the IPC had been keen to see produced. More information about Debt Management Plans was another item on the agenda, largely following IPC pressure for statistics now that IPs are required to explain all available options to debtors.

SIP Forum
Four members of the IPC attended the JIC’s one day forum on the revision of Statements of Insolvency Practice. It was agreed that revisions to existing SIPs (and SIPs in the future) should be subject to a public consultation process, to ensure that SIPs are properly focused on the needs of creditors, insolvents and practitioners.

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