Choosing an Insolvency Practitioner

Choosing an insolvency practitioner (IP) capable of offering an outstanding service is critical, whether you’re looking to arrange an IVA or file for bankruptcy. Unfortunately, in recent years there’s been something of a boom in business for IPs and, in some cases, as the quantity of their work has increased, the quality has come down. Consequently, it’s more important than ever to do your homework before picking the right professional for you. Here are some tips to follow to help ensure you end up getting the help you need.

Don’t Delay

Whatever form of insolvency you are looking at, putting together your case will take both time and effort. Though it’s not something any of us wants to do, you should start looking for an IP as soon as it becomes clear that you’re going to need their services. If you put such action off, you’ll dramatically increase your chances of getting lumbered with the first IP you can find and, even if they’re excellent, they may not have the time to work effectively.

Check Insolvency Court Panels

In fairness, most professionals who choose to sit on these panels do so because they know that it will help them bring in more clients. However, that said, if an IP is frequently appearing in insolvency court cases, it’s a strong sign they take their role very seriously. The official receivers office will be able to you the name of practitioners working with your local courts.

Ask Around

In addition, seeking advice from other legal professionals you might already have had dealings with can be a good way of finding a practitioner you can rely on. An accountant or solicitor for example, might have a contact who’s approved by the Institute of Insolvency Practitioners that they can put you in touch with.

Pay Some Visits

When trying to assess the competencies of the person you’ll be hiring, sometimes it’s best to go and see an IP in their working environment with your own eyes. A client should try to look at the neatness or tidiness of an office. If a practitioner’s office appears disorganized, his credibility in handling your case will be compromised. Meeting face to face will help to give you a good sense of their experience and the quality of their services.

Don’t Just Go For the Cheapest Option

Acquiring cheap practitioners can be detrimental to your cause. Although you might have minimal funds to spare, cheap practitioners may not offer the best services. Just like numerous other things in life, good practitioners come at a high price. A client wants a practitioner who is acutely familiar with the system and one who performs best when representing him or her and to pay a fair price for the help they receive. To determine the appropriateness of fees charged by different insolvency cases handlers, a client should check with the Institute of Insolvency Practitioners. They’ll be able to inform you of the going rates in your area.

You Don’t Have to Go Local

Lastly, clients should not hire insolvency practitioners based on their geographical locations. It would be a mistake to hire a practitioner that is strategically located to your place of residence without looking at his credentials. Clients should hire the professionals depending on the levels of comfort, skills, and proficiency offered by them. Although they may come at a high cost, their help will be priceless in case of a positive outcome.

Will Kerr writes on a range of insolvency issues, from finding reliable IPs to the ins and outs of Individual Voluntary Arrangements.

Andy Gorton is the author and editor of the Bankruptcy Clinic

Andy Gorton – who has written posts on Bankruptcy Clinic Blog.

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