The IVA Register
The IVA Register
Every time an insolvency solution is used in the UK, it is entered onto a database. For England and Wales, this is the Individual Insolvency Register, for Scotland it is the Register of Insolvencies. In Northern Ireland, IVAs are recorded on a separate Individual Voluntary Arrangement Register.
IVAs in England and Wales are entered into the Individual Insolvency Register.
What is the Individual Insolvency Register?
The Individual Insolvency Register (IIR) is a publically searchable database containing records of individual insolvencies – bankruptcies, Debt Relief Orders (DROs), and IVAs. The register can be accessed online, and searched by name.
The IIR can be a useful source of information for employers, landlords, or credit reference agencies.
Employers might use the register to ensure that an employee or candidate is legally allowed to work in their chosen field, since access to certain occupations is restricted to people who have experienced insolvency.
Landlords might search the register to see whether potential tenants have had trouble paying debts in the past. This could be a useful indicator of how likely they are to manage monthly rent payments. If a potential tenant has been insolvent in the past, the landlord might decide to ask for advance payment, or for the tenant to have a guarantor for example.
Because credit reference agencies have access to the register, having an IVA will have an impact on your credit score, hence your access to further credit. If credit reference agencies see that you have had trouble repaying your debts in the past, they are likely to reduce your score, which can make borrowing more challenging.
With any debt solution, though, you can rebuild your credit score over time, and worrying about your credit score should not put you off seeking help with your debts.
What Details Appear on the IIR?
The following details appear on the register:
- Type of insolvency (ie bankruptcy, IVA, or DRO)
- Full name and title
- Full address
- Date of birth
- Start and end date of the insolvency
- The Insolvency Practitioner (IP) responsible for the case
- IP’s contact details
If you think that having details of your address published on the IIR could put you in danger, you can appeal to have it removed, but this is uncommon.
According to the IIR’s website, these details, which might seem extensive, are provided to avoid people being confused with others, which is a particular issue when it comes to common surnames. The Insolvency Service, which is responsible for the IIR, says that it must keep a record of insolvency details by law.
How long do Details appear on the Register?
How long these details appear on the register depends upon the type of insolvency. Bankruptcy details remain visible for the duration of the bankruptcy (usually around one year) plus three months. Details of IVAs appear on the register for the duration of the plan – until you are discharged.
Despite this, going through insolvency can have a much more far-reaching effect on your credit score. An entire credit file contains information about a person’s credit record for the past six years, meaning that bankruptcies and IVAs remain on the file for this amount of time. This can make accessing credit more of a challenge even though your former debts have been settled.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to rebuild your credit once you have been discharged from insolvency:
- Ensure that once you have completed your IVA or bankruptcy, you receive a completion certificate – just in case you need to prove your discharge
- Request a copy of your credit file (from Experian, Equifax, or Callcredit) and ensure that all the details are correct. Incorrect details could drag your score down
- Take on a credit card. It might seem risky, but using credit is the single best way to show lenders that you can do so responsibly. Make sure to use it sparingly at first, and pay your bill in full every month. Credit cards are one of the easiest forms of credit to be approved for following an IVA or bankruptcy
If you need support with debt, you can talk confidentially to a Creditfix advisor by calling 0808 2085 198.
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