Sadly not. You need to owe more than £5,000 to become bankrupt.
However, you can get a debt relief order.
A Debt Relief Order (DRO) is a way of dealing with your debts if you can’t afford to pay them. It means you don’t have to pay certain kinds of debt for a specified period (usually 12 months).
At the end of the DRO period, the debts included in it will be written off (‘discharged’) and you won’t have to pay them.
You can only apply for a DRO through an ‘approved intermediary’. This is an authorised debt adviser, who will make the application on your behalf
To be eligible for a DRO, you must meet these criteria:
- you owe £20,000 or less
- you have less than £50 to spend each month, after paying tax, national insurance and normal household expenses
- you’ve lived or worked in England or Wales in the last 3 years
- your assets aren’t worth more than £1000 in total
- you’ve not had a DRO in the last 6 years
Your debt adviser will help you complete the application and explain what information you must include. They will then send it to the official receiver.
You will have to tell the official receiver if, in the last 2 years, you have:
- paid some creditors but not others
- given away any of your assets or sold them for less than they were worth
These might lead to your application being refused.
The official receiver’s fee is £90. This must be paid at the time of the application and won’t be refunded once a decision has been made, even if you aren’t granted a DRO.
The fee must be paid in cash. Some people are able to get a charity to pay their fee – your debt adviser can tell you more about this.
You can find more information and a debt advisor at:
Can I clarify anything for you about this today, please?
If you need anything further I am available for a follow up at no extra cost.