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Monthly Insolvency Statistics: February 2022

15th March, 2022

The Insolvency Service publish the latest release of its monthly series to provide more up to date information on the number of companies and individuals who are unable to pay debts and enter formal insolvency procedures due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The release supplements the Insolvency Service’s quarterly company and individual Insolvency National Statistics.

Be aware that there have been Government measures put in place in response to the coronavirus pandemic, including temporary restrictions on the use of statutory demands and certain winding up petitions and enhanced government financial support for companies and individuals. There was also the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 and for individuals, the Breathing Space scheme. As of 29 June 2021, monetary eligibility limits for Debt Relief Orders in England and Wales came into effect. All of these have a part to play in the statistics.

Note that some of these temporary measures have ended or been replaced, as of 30th September 2021.

Comparisons in data will be made throughout; comparing to pre-pandemic levels and during pandemic.

Company Insolvencies (UK)

In February 2022 there was a total of 1,515 registered company insolvencies across England and Wales, further broken down as follows:

  • 1,329 creditors voluntary liquidations (CVLs) – over double that in February 2021 and 40% higher than in February 2020
  • 109 administrations – 95% higher than in February 2021 but 26% lower than in February 2020
  • 74 compulsory liquidations – over twice as many compared to that in February 2021, but 68% lower than February 2020
  • 3 company voluntary arrangements (CVAs) – 50% lower than in February 2021 and 84% lower than in February 2020
  • No receivership appointments

These figures are more than double that seen in February 2021 and 13% higher than that in the same month two years before (pre-pandemic). The overall increase in company insolvencies was thought to be due to a higher amount of CVLs, as has been a consistent pattern for months prior.

Note: between 26 June 2020 and 28 February 2022, 33 companies were granted a moratorium (an increase compared to previous months) and 10 had restructuring plans sanctioned by the court. These procedures were created by the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020.

Company Insolvencies (Scotland)

February 2022 saw 73 company insolvencies in Scotland. Figures are made of 60 CVLs, 10 compulsory liquidations and 3 administrations. There were no receiverships or CVAs. These statistics are almost three times higher than that of February 2021, but 15% lower than that of February 2020.

Historically, the number of company insolvencies registered in Scotland has been driven by compulsory liquidations but since April 2020, there have been over twice as many CVLS as compulsory liquidations.

Between 26 June 2020 and 28 February 2022, there were no moratoriums obtained in Scotland and two companies had a restructuring plan registered at Companies House. The Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020 created these two procedures.

Company Insolvencies (Northern Ireland)

In February 2022, there were 18 company insolvencies in Northern Ireland, comprising of 10 compulsory liquidations, 4 CVLs and 4 administrations. There were no CVAs or receiverships. The total figure here is more than three times as many as recorded in February 2021, but was 33% lower than in February 2020.

Touching on individual insolvencies….

For UK figures, there were a total of 2,242 Debt Relief Orders (DROs) recorded in February 2022. Such statistics are 61% higher than in February 2021, but 6% lower than in February 2020. Note that as of 29 June 2021 some changes occurred to DRO eligibility which may have a part to play.

There were 588 bankruptcies for England and Wales in February 2022. The records are made up of 495 debtor applications and 93 creditor petitions. Monthly bankruptcy numbers between July 2021 and February 2022 were lower than that the year before, and pre-pandemic.

Compared to February 2021, bankruptcies were 36% lower, with debtor applications 39% lower and creditor petitions 13% lower. When looking at 2020, figures were 62% lower for total bankruptcies, 63% lower for debtor applications and 56% lower for creditor petitions.

It was also found that there were 6,384 individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs) registered, on average, during the three months ending February 2022. This figure is 4% higher than the three-month period ending February 2021 and 15% higher than that ending February 2020.

When looking at the figures for Northern Ireland, February 2022 saw 162 individual insolvencies. This is 13 % higher than that in February 2021, but 40% lower than in February 2020. This consisted of 122 IVAs, 23 DROs and 17 bankruptcies.

Find the full publication of statistics here.

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