Bankruptcies and declarations of intention

Annual administration statistics for bankruptcies and declarations of intention.

Bankruptcies by debtors' petition and sequestration order

Debtors' petitions

In 2014–15, 90% of new bankruptcies were on debtors’ petitions. This was a rise from 89% in 2013–14.

New bankruptcies on debtors’ petitions fell from 16,534 in 2013–14 to 15,449 in 2014–15. The main contributor to this fall was New South Wales.

There were only two states or territories where bankruptcies on debtors’ petitions rose in 2014–15 compared to 2013–14:

  • Western Australia rose from 1,137 to 1,218
  • Northern Territory rose from 76 to 93.

Sequestration orders

In 2014–15, 10% of new bankruptcies were on sequestration orders. This was a fall from 11% in 2013–14.

New bankruptcies on sequestration orders fell from 2,058 in 2013–14 to 1,708 in 2014–15. The main contributor to this fall was New South Wales.

There were only two states or territories where bankruptcies on sequestration orders rose in 2014–15 compared to 2013–14:

  • South Australia rose from 76 to 101
  • Northern Territory rose from 7 to 11.
State or territory Number of bankruptcies on debtors' petition in 2013-14 Number of bankruptcies on debtors' petition in 2014-15 Number of bankruptcies on sequestration order in 2013-14 Number of bankruptcies on sequestration order in 2014-15
NSW 5,372 4,792 723 548
ACT 166 165 17 14
Vic 3,345 3,094 511 462
Qld 4,855 4,590 496 391
SA 1,117 1,068 76 101
NT 76 93 7 11
WA 1,137 1,218 184 150
Tas 466 429 44 31
Total 16,534 15,449 2,058 1,708

Trustees administering new bankruptcies

Most new bankruptcies are administered by the Official Trustee:

  • the Official Trustee administered 81% of bankruptcies in 2014–15, a rise from 79% in 2013–14
  • registered trustees administered 19% of bankruptcies in 2014–15, a fall from 21% in 2013–14.

The number of new bankruptcies fell from 18,592 in 2013–14 to 17,157 in 2014–15:

  • bankruptcies administered by the Official Trustee fell from 14,709 to 13,858
  • bankruptcies administered by registered trustees fell from 3,883 to 3,299.

New South Wales was the main contributor to the fall in the number of new bankruptcies.

State or territory Number of bankruptcies administered by Official Trustee in 2013–14 Number of bankruptcies administered by Official Trustee in 2014–15 Number of bankruptcies administered by registered trustees in 2013–14 Number of bankruptcies administered by registered trustees in 2014–15
NSW 4,787 4,371 1,308 969
ACT 132 139 51 40
Vic 3,023 2,776 833 780
Qld 4,261 4,045 1,090 936
SA 1,018 995 175 174
NT 62 78 21 26
WA 1,004 1,052 317 316
Tas 422 402 88 58
Total 14,709 13,858 3,883 3,299

Declarations of intention

A declaration of intention provides temporary relief for up to 21 days. During this period, unsecured creditors cannot take any action to recover debts.

In 2014–15, 511 declarations of intention were accepted. This was a fall from 761 in 2013–14.  Queensland and New South Wales accounted for more than half of this fall.

The only state or territory where the number of declarations of intention rose in 2014–15 compared to 2013–14 was the Australian Capital Territory.

State or territory Number of declarations of intention accepted in 2013-14 Number of declarations of intention accepted in 2014-15
NSW 297 225
ACT 8 10
Vic 119 76
Qld 183 110
SA 39 28
NT 8 2
WA 79 46
Tas 28 14
Total 761 511