Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate

What is an Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate?

Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate

Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate is a requirement introduced by Rule 18.16 of the Insolvency (England and Wales) Rules 2016 when seeking approval for the basis and amount of remuneration.

An Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate may typically encompass the following information explained below and provide some further narrative that seeks to fit the facts of the relevant case.

Prior to an Insolvency Practitioner agreeing the basis of their remuneration as Office-Holder, details of the work proposed to be done and the expenses it is considered will be, or are likely to be, incurred in dealing with an insolvency estate’s affairs must be provided to creditors. 

Where the Insolvency Practitioner proposes to take all or any part of this remuneration based on the time they will spend dealing with the affairs of the insolvent estate, a fees estimate must also be provided. This will outline the anticipated cost of that work, how long it is anticipated the work will take and whether any further approvals may be needed from creditors in due course. 

It should be noted that a fees estimate may be provided to a particular milestone or for a designated period in a case, where it is not possible to accurately estimate the work that will need to be done at the outset.   

Creditors should be aware that the Insolvency Practitioner’s fees estimate is based on all of the information available now and may be subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances that may arise during the administration of the case.  If it is considered that the fees estimate will be exceeded, the Insolvency Practitioner will usually provide an update and seek approval to increase the previously agreed fees estimate. 

An Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate provides the information required for creditors to assess the reasonableness of the fee requested. 

What is an Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate Basis? 

An Insolvency Practitioner can base fees on time costs, a percentage of asset realisations (or property being administered) or a fixed amount.

Each part of the work to be undertaken will necessarily require different levels of expertise and therefore related cost.  

What is the Insolvency Practitioner Fee Estimate Outcome for Creditors? 

The outcome for creditors is the anticipated dividend to creditors, after taking into account the costs and expenses of the Insolvent Estate and the Insolvency Practitioner. 

What is an Insolvency Practitioner’s Administration Time?

Insolvency Practitioners are required to carry out certain tasks in nearly every insolvency assignment, namely administrative duties and dealing with the Insolvent Estate’s creditors.  Whilst these tasks are required by statute or regulatory guidance or are necessary for the orderly conduct of the proceedings, they do not necessarily produce any direct financial benefit for creditors, but nonetheless still have to be undertaken. 

This work includes: 
 

  • Notifying creditors of the Insolvency Practitioner’s appointment and other associated formalities including statutory advertising and filing relevant statutory notices at Companies House 
  • Lodging periodic returns with the Registrar of Companies for the liquidation 
  • Complying with statutory duties in respect of the Insolvency Practitioner’s specific penalty bond 
  • Creation and update of case files on the Insolvency Practitioner’s firm’s insolvency software 
  • Securing the Insolvent Estate’s books and records 
  • Completion and filing of the notice of the Insolvent Estate’s insolvency to HMRC  
  • Submitting a statutory report to the Insolvency Service under the Company Directors Disqualification Act
  • Periodic case progression reviews                                   
  • Opening, maintaining and managing the Insolvent Estate cashbook and bank account(s) 
  • Dealing with all and any post-appointment VAT and tax compliance 
  • Dealing with any employees matters if the Insolvent Estate has a PAYE scheme  
  • Closing the Insolvent Estate and preparing and issuing the Insolvency Practitioner’s final account to prescribed parties 

What are an Insolvency Practitioner’s Investigation Time Costs?

The Insolvency Practitioner is required by legislation to report on the conduct of the directors and is required by the Statements of Insolvency Practice to undertake an initial investigation in all cases to determine whether there are potential recovery actions for the benefit of creditors. 

This work includes:  

  • Actions to secure and collate books and records 
  • Send out and review questionnaires to the Company directors 
  • Review accounts, books, records and bank statements to ensure movement on assets and any unusual payments are accounted for
  • Review of transactions with associated companies or connected persons, ensuring that all transactions are at arm’s length. 
  • Interview accountants/company solicitors as appropriate 
  • Collate and review information from creditors and third parties 
  • File statutory return under the Company Director disqualification Act 
  • These tasks involve reconstruction of records
  • Reconstructing the books and records relating to the Insolvent Estate 
  • Investigations to review books and records obtained and recover the Insolvent Estate’s assets 
  • Review of documents and records
  • Instructing solicitors to assist investigations
  • Instruction of agents as appropriate
  • Reports where appropriate to relevant public bodies and authorities 

This work may not result in any financial benefit to creditors unless further recoveries are identified. If potential recoveries or matters for further investigation are identified additional information can be provided to creditors and approval for an increase in fees can be sought as necessary.  Such recovery actions will be for the benefit of the creditors and an Insolvency Practitioner will typically provide an estimate of that benefit if an increase in fees is necessary. 

In this case the fee estimate envisages time will be spent assembling, cataloguing information and reviewing it. Then the investigation phase will move onto to making enquiries of the Director for explanations about transactions whose purpose needs to be explained. 

What are an Insolvency Practitioner’s Creditors Time Costs? 

An Insolvency Practitioner will deal with all correspondence and claims received from all classes of creditors. In addition to statutory reporting duties, the work to be undertaken will usually include: 

  • Maintaining creditor details on file 
  • Preparing and issuing annual progress reports to members and creditors  
  • Responding to creditor queries 
  • Progress reporting to creditors 
  • Corresponding with creditors 
  • Keeping records of creditors and their claims 
  • Adjudication of creditor claims, particularly in this case in view of the size HMRC’s claim and any dispute arising thereof 
  • Fulfilling statutory obligations and compliance generally 

This work may not have any direct financial benefit for creditors. 

What is an Insolvency Practitioner Asset Realisation Time Costs?

Asset realisation time costs related to work done by the Insolvency Practitioner and any third parties engaged to assist the Insolvency Practitioner, in realising the Insolvent Estates assets.

This will, it is usually anticipated, provide a financial benefit to creditors by means of a distribution but subject to costs.