Insolvency technical update: September 2023
We share our latest insolvency technical update – your round-up of recent developments in insolvency.
The future of insolvency regulation
The government has released its long-awaited response to its consultation paper on the future of insolvency regulation. In its response, the government sets out its decision not to create a single regulator for the insolvency profession.
The consultation ran between December 2021 and March 2022 and sought views from the insolvency profession and other interested parties on proposals for the future of insolvency regulation. Our previous article summarised the most significant proposals contained within the consultation paper, which we responded to in March 2022.
Discover further details on the government’s response in our recent article.
HMRC insolvency VAT helplines survey
HMRC has published a survey requesting feedback on experiences using the VAT helplines.
The survey comprises seven questions and should take no longer than five to ten minutes to complete. Responses are anonymous and question seven provides an opportunity to add additional comments.
The survey will run until 1 December 2023. HMRC will review the findings of the survey to assess the VAT helplines’ effectiveness and consider where improvements can be made.
Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) ban on debt packager referral fees
The FCA’s ban on debt packager firms being paid to refer customers on to other firms takes effect from 2 October 2023.
The ban covers any commission, fee or any other financial consideration, received by a debt packager firm, directly or indirectly, from a debt solution provider in connection with the firm referring customers to a debt solution provider, or any other related services.
Our previous article has more information on the FCA’s changes to its rules.
Revised Statement of Insolvency Practice (SIP) 3.3 (Scotland) – trust deeds
A revised SIP 3.3 relating to trust deeds has been issued following the work of a Joint Insolvency Committee (JIC) working group and the approval of each of the Recognised Professional Bodies (RPBs).
Following consultation with the profession, the revised version of SIP 3.3 has now been approved by the JIC and will be effective for trust deeds signed on or after 1 November 2023.
A summary of the principal changes can be found in our article on this topic.
Companies House Edinburgh changes
Companies House in Edinburgh moved office location on 4 September 2023. Public access is no longer available and therefore all paper filings need to be delivered by post to Companies House, Crown Way, Cardiff, CF14 3UZ. Office Holders should ensure that sufficient time is built in for the postal delivery of documents in relation to Scottish cases to meet statutory filing deadlines.
Dear IP 160 has been issued by the Insolvency Service. The issue contains an update on new legislation with a potential impact on insolvent situations in relation to payments due to employees and new building safety regulation requirements.
National Crime Agency (NCA) suspicious activity reporting (SAR) portal launch
The new NCA SAR portal is now open to all reporting organisations.
Any ICAS anti-money laundering (AML) supervised firm can now register and immediately begin submitting SARs.
Once registered, the new SAR portal will become the sole route to submit reports.
It is recommended that registration is completed as soon as possible as the current SARs online system will be decommissioned later this year.
Mental health moratorium working group: report of recommendations
The Bankruptcy and Diligence (Scotland) Bill was introduced to the Scottish parliament on 27 April 2023 and includes an enabling power to introduce a mental health moratorium.
A working group was set up to focus on the operational practices required to implement the moratorium. The group has now published its report of recommendations, which is being considered by the Scottish government and will be subject to wider consultation.
Insolvency Service guidance – amend a redundancy claim
The Insolvency Service has updated its guidance for correcting a mistake or updating information provided in an online claim for redundancy. The online form link for "amend my employment details" has been added.
Hunt v Singh  EWHC 1784 (Ch): An English High Court case which looked at the point at which the directors’ duty to consider creditors’ interests arises if a liability is disputed (via Shoosmiths LLP).