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The bankruptcy system and the impacts of coronavirus

Closing date

We are seeking stakeholder submissions on possible changes to the bankruptcy system to inform the Australian Government’s ongoing response to address the impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19). We invite public submissions on the topics raised in our discussion paper.


The Bankruptcy Act 1966 regulates Australia's personal insolvency system. It creates a framework to allow people in severe financial stress to discharge unmanageable debts while providing for the realisation of a debtor's available assets for distribution to affected creditors.

The coronavirus pandemic has had wide reaching personal, employment and economic impacts across Australian communities, businesses, and industry sectors. The Australian Government made significant temporary amendments to the Bankruptcy Act and Regulations as part of the Coronavirus Economic Response Package in March 2020.

This discussion paper provides an overview of four elements of the Bankruptcy Act to guide stakeholder consideration:

  1. the default period of bankruptcy
  2. debt agreements
  3. personal insolvency agreements
  4. offence provisions.

Discussion questions are included as guidance. They are not intended to limit the scope of responses.

We also welcome views on any other areas that stakeholders consider may address the impact of coronavirus, including the impact that it has had on unincorporated businesses such as sole traders and partnerships.

Download the discussion paper

Make a submission

Email your submission in Microsoft Word format to:

Submissions close 12 February 2021.

We may publish submissions on this website. If you do not want your submission to be published, please mark it as confidential.

Note: Submissions or comments can be subject to freedom of information processes.

Get more information

Email for more information or assistance providing your submission.