What is an Insolvency Practitioner (IP)?
An Insolvency Practitioner (IP) is someone who is licensed and authorised to act on behalf of and provide advice to companies, organisations and individuals when they are facing financial difficulties. An IP is more often than not approached directly by a company Director (sometimes at the introduction of another professional advisor such as an Accountant) seeking help in dealing with their distressed company. Alternatively, in a compulsory liquidation by the Courts brought about when an unpaid creditor presents a winding-up petition, the Official Receiver first acts as the liquidator after which an IP may be appointed either by The Secretary of State or by creditors to take the liquidation forward.
To take a formal appointment, the IP should be Licensed by one of the recognised professional bodies. Licensed IP’s are generally able to advise on all formal insolvency procedures including liquidations, company voluntary arrangements, administrations, receiverships, bankruptcy and individual voluntary arrangements although most tend to specialise or have significant experience in either business-related or consumer debt issues.
What qualifications does an Insolvency Practitioner have?
Most IP’s have a degree and often an existing professional qualification but, in order to become a licensed insolvency practitioner, all must also now pass the Joint Insolvency Examination Board (JIEB) set of examinations. Also, have acquired in-depth professional experience providing them with a working understanding of the law relating to insolvency and how it is applied in real-life scenarios. Authorisation to become a Licensed IP is still subject to being considered fit and proper by one of the recognised professional bodies.
At Poppleton and Appleby, we pride ourselves in being a firm of Licenced Insolvency Practitioners, able to deal with all advice in-house without any need to refer you elsewhere.
Are IP’s regulated?
Yes, the recognised professional bodies include The Insolvency Practitioners Association (IPA), the Institute of Chartered Accountants (ICAEW and ICAS), the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), and The Law Society and each of these is supervised and regulated by The Insolvency Service which is a government department which makes sure that they all adhere to the same minimum standards.
To ensure that IP’s maintain these standards they are all subject to a regime of scrutiny and inspection by their authorising regulator.
At Poppleton and Appleby all of our IP’s are regulated and licensed by the Insolvency Practitioners Association to take insolvency appointments in the UK, and we are equipped to advise upon and deal with the most critical of financial situations for companies, businesses and individuals.
When is the right time to contact an Insolvency Practitioner?
The sooner you contact an IP, the better. The directors of a company in difficulty are often recommended the services of an IP by their accountant, solicitor, funder or another trusted professional that they are in contact with. For others, the search for this advice starts when financial distress levels and cash flow reach an unmanageable point and directors may feel that they can’t cope with the situation. As Insolvency Practitioners our first job is to assess the options and suggest the best course of action. Sometimes what is required is all too obvious but often it isn’t and someone taking advice from an IP shouldn’t pre-judge the outcome.
The unfortunate reality is that most people contact an Insolvency Practitioner when it is already too late. The best time to contact an IP is when the initial concerns arise because early advice and intervention are more likely to preserve wider and more numerous options for the survival of a company or a business that may not be around if you hang on too long.
Are you ready to talk to us? To discuss your best options, no matter what stage of the business journey you are in, contact us on 0161 228 3028 for Manchester or 01484 437423 for Huddersfield.