Guide

Learn more about the provisional personal insolvency statistics.

Introduction

We publish provisional numbers of bankruptcies, debt agreements and personal insolvency agreements on a quarterly basis.

Provisional personal insolvency statistics for the financial year are released at the same time as the June quarter statistics each year.

Data collection

Every debtor who becomes bankrupt or proposes a debt agreement or personal insolvency agreement is required to lodge a completed statement of affairs form with AFSA. The provisional personal insolvency statistics are generally sourced from this form.

When a bankruptcy is the result of a sequestration order, there may be a delay before the bankrupt lodges a statement of affairs. When this occurs, we record the details supplied by the court, including the address of the bankrupt. We update the record with information supplied by the bankrupt when the statement of affairs is lodged. Bankruptcies resulting from sequestration orders accounted for 10% of bankruptcies in 2011–12. We do not revise the provisional personal insolvency statistics with this updated data.

Defining new personal insolvency administrations

The provisional personal insolvency statistics report on the number of new proceedings administered under the Bankruptcy Act 1966 as follows:

  • Bankruptcies (Parts IV and XI of the Bankruptcy Act 1966): number of new debtors petitions, creditors petitions and Part XI deceased estate bankruptcy administrations which have occurred in the reporting period.
  • Debt agreements (Part IX of the Bankruptcy Act 1966): number of new debt agreements which have been accepted by creditors in the reporting period.
  • Personal insolvency agreements (Part X of the Bankruptcy Act 1966):  number of new personal insolvency agreements which have been accepted by creditors in the reporting period.

Scope and coverage

The provisional personal insolvency statistics are published at the state and territory level. When possible, this information is based on the state of residence reported on the statement of affairs form.  When a bankruptcy is the result of a sequestration order, we record the debtors address supplied by the court. We update this address when the bankrupt lodges a statement of affairs.

Our quarterly statistics report on the most recent debtor’s address supplied to us. We validate these addresses as correct addresses.

Time series

The time series for the quarterly provisional personal insolvency statistics commence in the:

  • September quarter 1986 for bankruptcies and personal insolvency agreements
  • March quarter 1997 for debt agreements as debt agreements came into effect from December 1996.

Two series breaks occur in the provisional personal insolvency statistics at the state and territory level. These time series breaks are due to enhancements which changed reporting from state of lodgement to state of residence of debtors.

Time series breaks affect information at the state and territory level but do not impact on the national total.

The time series breaks are:

  • Personal insolvency agreement reporting is based on the state of residence of debtors from the September quarter 1995. Previous quarters were reported on an AFSA classification which was broadly based on the state of lodgement.
  • Bankruptcy reporting is based on the state of residence of debtors from the September quarter 2005. Previous quarters were reported on state of lodgement.

Comparison with other datasets

Insolvency proceedings involving two or more partners are treated as one administration. The provisional personal insolvency statistics report on the number of administrations.

We report personal information, such as whether a debtor’s personal insolvency is business related, based on the number of people not administrations.

Information presented in the provisional personal insolvency statistics is not directly reconcilable with information in other publications.

Personal insolvency activity is recorded on a live system and can change regularly. Our publications are correct as at the time of compilation.

Data quality

Great care is taken to ensure that the personal insolvency statistics are correct and accurate at the time of compilation.

Information continues to be processed and stored in our systems after we release the provisional statistics, however we do not revise our provisional statistics. Delays in the receipt, processing and administration of personal insolvencies may affect the statistics.

Revisions

The provisional personal insolvency statistics are not revised unless an error is identified.