General and Personal Insolvency Sub-area NPA logo with link NPA logo with link

General and Personal Insolvency Sub-area

About this Sub-Area

This Sub-area includes matters related to general and personal insolvency under the Bankruptcy Act 1966 (Cth) (Bankruptcy Act). Relevant matters include:

  • Applications by trustees in the management of bankrupt estates (e.g. voidable transactions)
  • Applications by bankrupts contesting decisions of a trustee
  • Applications for annulment of bankruptcy
  • Bankruptcy matters referred to a Judge by a Judicial Registrar.

Bankruptcy matters may be heard by the Federal Court. They may also be heard in the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.

This Sub-area does not include any corporate insolvency matters such as winding-up applications. These types of matters fall within the Corporations and Corporate Insolvency Sub-area in the Commercial and Corporations NPA.

Bankruptcy matters before a Judicial Registrar

A significant proportion of bankruptcy matters are case managed and determined by Judicial Registrars of the Court. This includes:

  • creditors’ petitions
  • applications to set aside bankruptcy notices
  • examinations pursuant to s 81 of the Bankruptcy Act.

A Guide to Bankruptcy Matters before a Judicial Registrar has been prepared to assist litigants involved in bankruptcy matters before a Judicial Registrar and relevant information for Judicial Registrar bankruptcy lists in each registry.

Practice Notes

All practice notes are to be read with the Central Practice Note.  It is the essential guide to practice in the Federal Court in all proceedings.

NPA Practice Note:

NOTE: also refer to Schedule 2 of the practice note – General and Personal
Insolvency Sub-area

Other general practice notes and Court developed guides which may be relevant to this Sub-area include:

General Practice Notes:


Forms, Rules & Fees

Filing fees for commencing a proceeding in this Sub-area may apply. Information about Court Fees, including the fees payable and circumstances where an exemption or deferral can be given is available in Forms, Fees & Costs or from the Registry.

The general procedure for the conduct of matters in this Sub-area is set out in the Federal Court (Bankruptcy) Rules 2016 (Bankruptcy Rules). As the Bankruptcy Rules do not provide a comprehensive code, the Federal Court Rules 2011 (Cth) (Rules) also apply except to the extent of any inconsistency.

Unless the Bankruptcy Rules otherwise provide, you must make an application under the Bankruptcy Act to the Court by filing:

  • Corporations Rules 2.01 (including Notes 1 and 2), 2.02, 2.03, 6.01, 6.05, 6.11, 6.16, 14.01, 14.04, 14.08 and 14.09

Latest Judgments

  • 16 Jun 2022: Scott (Trustee), in the matter of Stolyar (Bankrupt) v Stolyar [2022] FCA 691
    BANKRUPTCY AND INSOLVENCY - application by Trustee in bankruptcy (Trustee) to recover several properties or interests in those properties - whether properties, or interests in those properties, are held on trust for the bankrupt estates - whether the transfer of certain property was an undervalued transaction or a transaction to defeat creditors…
    Judge: Markovic J
  • 2 Jun 2022: Jafari v 23 Developments Pty Ltd [2022] FCA 651
    PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - continued non-compliance with Court orders - where appellant given repeated opportunities to comply with court orders - default judgment awarded under r 5.23 of Federal Court Rules 2011
    Judge: Anderson J
  • 2 Jun 2022: Francis (Trustee), in the matter of Fotios (Bankrupt) v Helios Corporation Pty Ltd (No 2) [2022] FCA 652
    CORPORATIONS - application for advice by Court appointed receivers - issues as to final form of orders - whether order should provide for priority of right of recoupment over right of exoneration
    Judge: Colvin J
  • 31 May 2022: Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited v State of Western Australia, in the matter of Raleigh [2022] FCA 639
    BANKRUPTCY - application by mortgagee for order vesting bankrupts' properties in mortgagee - properties disclaimed by trustee in bankruptcy - mortgagee seeks to utilise powers as if mortgagee in possession - just and equitable that property be vested in mortgagee - appropriate allocation of any surplus - orders and declarations made
    Judge: Banks-smith J
  • 24 May 2022: Thompson v Lane (Trustee) (No 4) [2022] FCA 616
    COSTS - application for annulment of bankruptcy - where applicant unsuccessful - where costs sought by creditor who took active role as contradictor - where creditor sought lump-sum costs order and for costs to be paid in the same priority as provided for in s 109(1)(a) of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 (Cth) - where role of creditor as contradictor…
    Judge: Logan J
  • 24 May 2022: Mann (Trustee) v Storey (No 2) [2022] FCA 609
    BANKRUPTCY AND INSOLVENCY - where applicant was appointed trustee of the estate of the respondent by orders of the High Court of the Republic of Singapore - where letter of request received from the Supreme Court of Singapore - application pursuant to s 29(2)(a) of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 (Cth) for the appointment of a receiver empowered to manage …
    Judge: Stewart J
  • 18 May 2022: Amirbeaggi as Trustee for the Bankrupt Estate of Hanna v Hanna (No 2) [2022] FCA 562
    PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - application for leave to amend cross-claim - where application made after expert report concluded, contrary to the cross-claimant's pleaded position, that he had signed a dealing for the transfer of property - where consideration of the factors relevant to the discretion weighs in favour of allowing the amendment PRACTICE…
    Judge: Goodman J
  • 11 May 2022: Mann (Trustee) v Storey [2022] FCA 542
    PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - application by respondent to vacate upcoming final hearing due to alleged inability to participate adequately related to lack of personal computer - whether respondent will be provided with a fair hearing if hearing proceeds on listed date - application dismissed
    Judge: Stewart J
  • 6 May 2022: Toyota Finance Australia Limited v Youssef Berro [2022] FCA 497
    BANKRUPTCY AND INSOLVENCY - application by respondent to set aside sequestration orders and dismiss creditor's petition - where no evidence of statement of affairs provided - where respondent failed to establish he is able to pay his debts as and when they fall due - application dismissed PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - application by respondent to set…
    Judge: Burley J
  • 3 May 2022: Rahman v Kent [2022] FCA 485
    PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - appeal from Federal Circuit Court's ("FCC") dismissal of a review of a Registrar's orders - where Registrar awarded costs of self-represented solicitors including professional fees - where FCC's decision handed down prior to the High Court's decision in Bell Lawyers Pty Ltd v Pentelow [2019] HCA 29; 269 CLR 333 - where… 159 ACSR 86
    Judge: Stewart J


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Important note: This information is procedural advice only. You should seek your own legal advice about legal cases and procedure in the Federal Court and in this area of law.