23 September 2019

Barristers and Bankruptcy

Barristers have a duty to report to the Bar Standards Board if they are subject to a bankruptcy order or if they enter into an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA)

Under Rule C65.6 of the Code of Conduct in the BSB Handbook, all barristers, whether practising or not, are required to report promptly to the Bar Standards Board if:

  • Bankruptcy proceedings or directors disqualification proceedings are initiated against them 
  • A Bankruptcy order or directors disqualification order is made against them 
  • They enter into an IVA with their creditors

Entering into an IVA or being subject to a bankruptcy order is not in itself a disciplinary offence or a bar to practising; however, failure to promptly report these circumstances to the BSB, or failure to keep the BSB updated after reporting, may give rise to disciplinary proceedings.

If you are subject to a bankruptcy order or enter an IVA, you should email the Supervision team to provide brief details of the circumstances leading to the bankruptcy or IVA as well as the start date. Please mark it for the attention of the Supervision Team in the subject of the email.

If you have any questions, or wish to discuss the matter further, please contact supervision@barstandardsboard.org.uk. Alternatively, the Supervision Team can be contacted through the Bar Standards Board reception at 020 7611 1444.