Information for Debtors
1. How do I apply for DRS?
It is not possible to sign up or apply for the DRS as it is only initiated when a bankruptcy application is made against you in the High Court (“the Court”), either by yourself or your creditor.
The Court may then refer your case to the Official Assignee (“OA”) if your total liabilities are below $100,000, for an assessment of your eligibility and suitability for the DRS.
While the Court refers your case to the OA, there are other criteria that you must meet to determine your suitability for the DRS.
2. Am I eligible for DRS?
You have to fulfil all of the following eligibility criteria:
(a) Total liabilities do not exceed $100,000;
(b) Gainfully employed and earning a regular income;
(c) Not been a bankrupt or been on the DRS in the last 5 years;
(d) Not been subject to a court-based arrangement in the last 5 years; and
(e) Not a sole-proprietor or partner in any firm.
You will be deemed ineligible for DRS if you fail to meet any of the criteria stated above, and the OA will not further assess the matter.
3. Am I suitable for DRS?
If you satisfy the eligibility criteria, your suitability to be placed on the DRS will be further assessed by the OA. You have to submit documents online concerning your financial affairs, income and expenditure, as well as your proposed debt repayment plan to your creditors. You will also need to submit relevant supporting documents to substantiate your declaration. You must also not be a director in any firm as you may be subject to business liabilities while acting in your capacity as a director.
If you are found to be suitable for the DRS, a DRS administrator will devise a Debt Repayment Plan (“DRP”) for you. However, should the OA assess that you are unsuitable, or if you fail to comply with the OA’s instructions, you will be deemed unsuitable and your case will be referred back to Court for the bankruptcy proceedings to be heard again.
4. Does the Official Assignee have appointed agents to file bankruptcy applications in the High Court?
The Official Assignee does not file bankruptcy applications in the High Court and has not appointed any agent to file such applications. All bankruptcy applications are filed in the High Court by a creditor or by an individual debtor. At the hearing of the bankruptcy application, the High Court may refer a case to the Official Assignee for an assessment to be conducted to determine the debtor’s suitability to be placed on the Debt Repayment Scheme (DRS). A debtor cannot apply to be placed on the DRS as it is only initiated when a bankruptcy application is filed in the High Court.
5. What happens when I am referred to the Insolvency Office by the Court after hearing the bankruptcy application?
At the hearing of the bankruptcy application, the Court may adjourn the matter for up to 6 months to enable the OA to assess your suitability for the DRS.
You will receive a notice from the Insolvency Office informing you to view the Introductory Video on the DRS. If you fulfil the eligibility criteria set out in the video and are keen to proceed with the DRS assessment, you must file your documents online. If you need assistance in the submission of your documents, you may approach the e-service helpers located at the MinLaw Services Centre. MinLaw Services Centre is located at:
MinLaw Services Centre
The URA Centre (East Wing)
45 Maxwell Road
Services rendered by the e-service helpers are chargeable.
If we do not receive your online submission by the given deadline and/or you do not meet the eligibility criteria, you may be found unsuitable for the DRS and your case will be referred back to Court for the bankruptcy proceedings to be heard again.
6. What are the documents to be submitted for suitability assessment?
In your Notice of Introduction on DRS & Filing of Statement of Affairs, you will be notified to submit the following documents online:
(a) Statement of Affairs;
(b) Income & Expenditure Statement;
(c) Debt Repayment Plan; and
(d) Supporting documents as per Annex B
You will be given 14 days to view the Introductory Video and complete the online submission, failing which your case will be referred back to Court for the bankruptcy proceedings to be heard again.
7. What happens after submission of documents?
Once your online submission has been verified and accepted by the DRS administrator, you will be notified to pay the preliminary fee of $350 at any SAM or Singpost branch.
For a further assessment of your suitability for the DRS, a meeting of creditors will be held in our office. You will be required to make a payment of $250 before the meeting.
Your attendance at the meeting of creditors is compulsory. If you are unable to attend the appointment, you are to inform us at least 3 days prior to the meeting date. You may otherwise be deemed unsuitable for DRS if you fail to attend the meeting without a valid reason and/or without having obtained the permission of the OA to be absent.
The administrators will chair the meeting and discuss your approved monthly instalment, as well as the terms and conditions of your DRP with your creditors. The outcome of our assessment will be informed to you within 7 days of the meeting.
8. When do I start my first monthly instalment?
Once you are determined to be suitable for the DRS, you have to prepare to pay the amount of $300 being the first annual fee and your approved first monthly instalment.
You may wish to note that the sooner you start on the DRS, the less you will be paying in the long run, as interest on the claims filed by your creditors will stop running on the day you start on the DRS.
Once you have made the first payments, the OA will inform you, the Court and your applicant-creditor of the outcome of the DRS assessment and the commencement of your DRP. The bankruptcy application made against you will then be deemed withdrawn.
9. How do I continue to pay for my monthly instalments and/or bonus?
There are 3 payment methods:
(a) Payment using any Self-service Automated Machine (SAM)(1.08MB);
(b) Payment at SingPost counters (for Cash Payments); and
(c) Payment using SAM Online.
Please provide your DRS Case Number (e.g. D00XXXX-2015) and the nature of the payment (e.g. instalment or bonus payment).
10. What are my duties as a debtor on DRS?
Once the DRP commences, you are expected to carry out your statutory duties as a debtor under the DRS i.e. adhere to the terms and conditions of the DRP. If you fail to comply with the terms and conditions of your DRP and/ or do not fulfil the duties expected of you, these may be grounds for the OA to issue you with a Certificate of Failure, after which your creditors may commence fresh bankruptcy proceedings against you.
Pursuant to section 56P of the Bankruptcy Act, you are expected to adhere to the following:
(a) Inform your case administrator if there is any change in your contact details, i.e. change in mobile number, address;
(b) Inform your case administrator if there is any change in your employment details, i.e. change of employer, increase in salary, payment of bonus(es) and forward the necessary documents (employment contract/salary slip) to your case administrator;
(c) Attend any meeting required by the OA and to inform your case administrator at least 3 days in advance if you are unable to attend the meeting;
(d) Do not make any preferential payments to any of your creditors;
(e) Do no incur further liabilities without the ability to repay;
(f) Update your Income and Expenditure statement as required and to forward supporting documents e.g. salary slips, CPF statements and/or Notice of Tax Assessment and any other additional documents requested by your case administrator eg. receipts; and
(g) Adhere to the terms and conditions of the approved DRP, including the payment of regular monthly instalments, Annual Wage Supplement/bonus, and annual administration fees when required.
11. Summary of DRS fees and/or charges
The fees payable under the Bankruptcy (Debt Repayment Scheme) Rules for assessment and administration of cases are set out below.
|Before DRP commences
||At the submission of documents
|OA’s review of debtor’s suitability for the DRS
||On or before the meeting of creditors
|After DRP commences
· First 2 years
· Next 3 years
$300 per year
$350 per year
|At the start of every year of administration
||At the submission of Notice of Appeal
|DRP Modification Fee
||On or before the meeting of creditors for modification of DRP
|Collection fee by the OA of all payments made by debtor
||1.5% of amount collected
|Distribution fee by the OA of dividends to creditors
||3% of amount distributed
12. Contact DRS
Insolvency Office (IO)
Individual Insolvency & Debt Repayment Scheme Division
The URA Centre (East Wing)
45 Maxwell Road
Please send in your enquiries/feedback at Contact Us @ OneMinLaw
Alternatively, you may visit us at our website at www.mlaw.gov.sg or contact us at 1800-2255-529 (during office hours).
13. Other Frequently Asked Questions
For other frequently asked questions on the Debt Repayment Scheme (“DRS”), click here.