Thursday 23 November 2017

Real test of bankruptcy will be about realising assets

THE so-called Baron of Ballsbridge is bankrupt after a lengthy transatlantic legal battle. The bankruptcy of Sean Dunne will raise a keen sense of schadenfreude in some quarters. But the adjudication of Mr Dunne by another Dunne – High Court judge Elizabeth Dunne, who will shortly be elevated to the Supreme Court – brings an air of reality to the so-called practice of bankruptcy tourism.

Ireland's Dickensian system of effectively placing bankrupts in debtors' jail for up to 12 years drove a small number of borrowers to seek bankruptcy in other countries.

The foreign bankruptcy option is one, ironically, that is only open to debtors – usually former high net worth individuals – who can afford to be adjudicated a bankrupt elsewhere.

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