Bankruptcy Act

Link to law: http://laws.gov.ag/acts/chapters/cap-41.pdf
Published: 0000

Bankruptcy ( C A P . 41 1

CHAPTER 41

THE BANKRUPTCY ACT

Arrangement of Sections
Section

1. Short title.
2. Interpretation.
3. Schedules.

Proceedings from Act of Bankruptcy to Discharge
Acts of bankruptcy.
Jurisdiction to make receiving order.
Conditions on which creditor may petition.
Proceedings and order on Creditor's petition.
Debtor's petition and order thereon.
Effect of receiving order.
Discretionary power of Court as to appointment of

receiver and stay of proceedings.
Service of order staying proceedings.
Power to appoint Special Manager.
Advertisement of receiving order.
First and other meetings of creditors.
Debtor's Statement of affairs.
Public examination of debtor.
Power for creditor to accept and Court to approve com-

position or arrangement.
Effect of composition or scheme.
Adjudication of bankruptcy where composition not

accepted or approved.
Appointment of trustee.
Committee of inspection.
Power to accept composition or scheme after bankruptcy

adjudication.
Duties of debtor as to discovery and realization of

property.

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2 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

24. Arrest of debtor under certain circumstances.
25. Re-direction of debtor's letters.
26. Discovery of debtor's property.
27. Discharge of bankrupt.
28. Fraudulent settlements.
29. Effect of order of discharge.
30. Undischarged bankrupt obtaining credit to extent of $96

to be guilty of misdemeanor.

Disqualifications of Bankrupt

31. Vacating of seat as member of public authority.
32. Court may annul adjudication in certain cases.
33. Meaning of payment of debts in full.

Administration of Property

34. Description of debts provable in bankruptcy.
35. Mutual credit and set off.
36. Rules as to proof of debts.
37. Priority of debts.
38. Preferential claim in case of apprenticeship.
39. Relation back to trustee's title.
40. Description of bankrupt's property divisible amongst

creditors.
41. Restriction of rights of creditors under execution or

attachment.
42. Duties of Provost-Marshal as to goods taken in

execution.
43. Avoidance of voluntary settlements.
44. Avoidance of preferences in certain cases.
45. Protection of bona f ide transactions

without notice.
46. Possession of property by trustee.
47. Seizure of property of bankrupt.
48. Appropriation of portion of pay or salary to creditors.
49. Vesting and transfer of property.
50. Disclaimer of onerous property.
51. Power of trustee to deal with property.
52. Powers exercisable by trustees with permission of

committee of inspection.
53. Declaration and distribution of dividend.

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 3

54. Joint and separate dividends.
55. Provision for creditors residing at a distance, etc.
56. Right of creditor who has not proved debt before

declaration of &vidend.
57. Final dividend.
58. No action for dividend.
59. Power to allow bankrupt to manage property.
60. Right of bankrupt to surplus.

Official Receivers and Staff

61. Official receiver appointed by Minister.
62. Deputy for official receiver.
63. Status of official receiver.
64. Duties of official receiver as regards debtor's conduct.
65. Duties of official receiver as to debtor's estate.
66. Power of Minister to appoint additional officers.

Trustee in Bankruptcy

67. Remuneration of trustee.
68. Allowance and taxation of costs.
69. Payment of money into the Treasury.
70. Trustee not to pay into private account.
71. Investment of surplus funds.
72. Audit of trustees' accounts.
73. The trustee to furnish list of cre

di

tors.
74. Books to be kept by trustee.
75. Annual statement of proceedings.
76. Release of trustee.
77. Official name of trustee.
78. Power to appoint joint or successive trustees.
79. Office of trustee vacated by insolvency.
80. Removal of trustee.
81. Proceedings in case of vacancy in office of trustee.
82. Limitation of voting powers of trustee.
83. Discretionary powers of trustees and control thereof.
84. Appeal to Court against trustee.
85. Control of the prescribed authority over trustees.
86. Investigations by prescribed authority.

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4 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

PART VI

Constitution, Procedure and Powers of the Court

87. Supreme Court to have jurisdiction in bankruptcy.
88. Transactions of bankruptcy business by single Judge.
89. Judge may exercise jurisdiction in bankruptcy in

Chambers.
90. Appointment of Registrar.
91. Jurisdiction in bankruptcy of Registrar.
92. Transfer of proceedings.
93. Reference to Judge of question of law.
94. Payments to be made out of Treasury on order of the

Court.
95. General power of the Court.
96. Appeals in bankruptcy.
97. Discretionary power of the Court.
98. Consolidation of petitions.
99. Power to change carriage of proceedings.

100. Continuance of proceedings on death of debtor.
101. Power to stay proceedings.
102. Power to present petition against one partner.
103. Power to dismiss petitions against some respondents

only.
104. Property of partners to be vested in same trustee.
105. Actions by trustee and bankrupt's partners.
106. Actions on joint contracts.
107. Proceedings in ~artnership name.
108. Search warrants.
109. Commitment to prison.

PART VII

Small Bankruptcies

110. Summary administration in small cases.
11 1. Power for Court to make administration order instead

of order for payment by instalments.

PART VIII

Supplemental Provisions

112. Exclusion of partnerships and Companies.

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 5

113. Administration in bankruptcy of estate of person dying
insolvent.

114. Power to make general rules.
115. Fees and remuneration.
116. Salaries, etc.,
11 7 . Annual accounts of receipt and expenditure in respect of

bankruptcy.
1 18. Evidence of proceedings at meeting of creditors.
119. Evidence of proceedings in bankruptcy.
120. Swearing of affidavits.
12 1. Death of witness.
122. Seal of the Court.
123. Certificate of appointment of trustee.
124. Time in which appeal to the Court to be brought.
125. Proceedings of the prescribed authority.
126. Computation of time.
127. Service of notices.
128. Formal defect not to invalidate proceedings.
129. Exemption of deeds, etc. from stamp duty.
130. Sales under executions to be public.
131. Application of Trustee Act to bankruptcy of trustee.
132. Acting of corporations, partners, etc.
133. Certain provisions to bind the Crown.
134. Married Women.
135. Unclaimed and undistributed dividends or funds under

this and former Acts.
FIRST SCHEDULE.
SECOND SCHEDULE.

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 7

BANKRUPTCY

(1st September, 1893 .)
1111939.

S.R.O. 2211956.
1511961.

1. This Act may be cited as the Bankruptcy Act. Short title.

2. In this Act- Interpretation.

"affidavit" includes statutory declarations, affirmations,
and attestations;

"Authority" includes Court, Government Department,
Government Officer, or other persons given
authority under or by virtue of this Act;

"available act of bankruptcy" means any act of
bankruptcy available for a bankruptcy petition at
the date of the presentation of the petition on which
the receiving order is made;

"the Court" means the High Court;

"debt provable in bankruptcy" or "provable debt"
includes any debt or liability by this Act made
provable in bankruptcy;

"gazetted" means published in the Gazette;

"general rules" includes forms;

"goods" includes all chattels personal;

"Government Officer" means any officer in the Govern-
ment of Antigua and Barbuda;

"liability" shall for the purposes of this Act include
any compensation for work or labour done, any
obligation or possibility of an obligation to pay
money or money's worth, on the breach of any

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8 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

express or implied covenant, contract, agreement
or undertaking, whether the breach does or does
not occur, or is or is not likely to occur or capable
of occurring before the discharge of the debtor, and
generally it shall include any express or implied
engagement, agreement, or undertaking, to pay,
or capable of resulting in the payment of money
or money's worth, whether the payment is, as
respects amount, fixed, or unlimited; as respects
time, present or future, certain or dependent on
any one contingency or on two or more contingen-
cies; as to mode of valuation, capable of being ascer-
tained by fixed rules, or as matter of opinion;

"local bank" means any bank in Antigua and Barbuda;

"ordinary resolution" means a resolution decided by
a majority in value of the creditors present, per-
sonally, or by proxy, at a meeting of creditors and
voting on the resolution;

' ' person" includes a body of persons corporate or
unincorporate;

"prescribed" means prescribed by general rules within
the meaning of this Act;

' ' property" includes money, goods, things in action,
land, and every description of property whether real
or personal and whether situate in Antigua and
Barbuda or elsewhere; also obligations, easements,
and every description of estate, interest and profit,
present or future, vested or contingent, arising out
of or incident to property as above defined;

"Provost Marshal" includes any officer charged with
the execution of a writ or other process;

"resolution" means ordinary resolution;

"secured creditor" means a person holding a mortgage
charge or lien on the property of the debtor, or
any part thereof, as a security for a debt due to
him from the debtor;

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41

"Special resolution" means a resolution decided by a
majority in number and three-fourths in value of the creditors
present, personally or by proxy, at a meeting of creditors
and voting on the resolution;

I < trustee" means the trustee in bankruptcy of a deb-
tor's estate.

3. The Schedules to this Act shall be construed and Schedu*es.
have effect as part of this Act.

Proceedings from Act of Bankruptcy to Discharge

Act of Bankruptcy

4. (1) A debtor commits an act of bankruptcy in each Acts of bankruptcy.
of the following cases-

(a) If in Antigua and Barbuda or elsewhere he
makes a conveyance or assignment of his property to
a trustee or trustees for the benefit of his creditors
generally;

( 6 ) If in Antigua and Barbuda or elsewhere he
mades a fraudulent conveyance, gift, delivery, or transfer
of his property, or any part thereof;

(c) If in Antigua and Barbuda or elsewhere he
makes any conveyance or transfer of his property, or
any part thereof, or creates any charge thereon, which
would under this or any other Act be void as a fraudulent
preference if he were adjudged bankrupt;

(d) If with intent to defeat or delay his creditors
he does any of the following things namely, departs out
of Antigua and Barbuda, or being out of Antigua and
Barbuda remains out of Antigua and Barbuda, or
departs from his dwelling house, or otherwise absents
himself, or begins to keep house;

(e) If execution issued against him has been levied
by seizure and sale of his goods under process in an
action in any court, or in any civil proceeding in the
Supreme Court;

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CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

Cf) If any judgment debt has been ordered by the
Court to be levied upon any lands other than a planta-
tion in which there are forty acres under cultivation,
or any mortgage, incumbrance or interest in or upon
such land;

(g) If he files in the Court a declaration of his
inability to pay his debts, or presents a bankruptcy peti-
tion against himself;

(h) If a creditor has obtained a final judgment
against him for any amount, and execution thereon not
having been stayed, has served on him in Antigua and
Barbuda or by leave of the Court, elsewhere, a
bankruptcy notice under this Act, requiring him to pay
the judgment debt in accordance with the terms of the
judgment, or to secure or compound for it to the satisfac-
tion of the creditor or the Court, and he does not, within
seven days after service of the notice, in case the ser-
vice is effected in the said island, and in case the ser-
vice is effected elsewhere, then within the time limited
in that behalf by the order giving leave to effect the ser-
vice either comply with the requirements of the notice,
or satisfy the Court that he has a counter claim set-off
or cross demand which equals or exceeds the amount
of the judgment debt, and which he could not set up
in the action in which the judgment was obtained;

(9 If the debtor gives notice to any of his creditors
that he has suspended, or that he is about to suspend,
payment of his debts;

@ If the debtor has in fact suspended payment of
his debts and given notice to any of his creditors that
he is insolvent.

(2) A bankruptcy notice under this Act shall be in the
prescribed form, and shall state the consequences of non-
compliance therewith, and shall be served in the prescribed
manner.

Receiving Order

Jurisdiction to 5. Subject to the conditions hereinafter specified, if
make receiving
order. a debtor commits an act of bankruptcy the Court may, on

a bankruptcy petition being presented, either by a creditor

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 11

or by the debtor, make an order, in this Act called a receiv-
ing order, for the protection of the estate.

6. (1) A creditor shall .not be entitled to present a Conditions
which creditor

bankruptcy petition against a debtor unless- may petition.

(a) The debt is a liquidated sum, payable either
immediately or at some certain future time, and

(6) The act of bankruptcy on which the petition
is grounded has occurred within six months before the
presentation of the petition, and

( c ) The debtor is domiciled in Antigua and
Barbuda, or within a year before the date of the presen-
tation of the petition has ordinarily resided or had a
dwelling house or place of business in Antigua and
Barbuda.

(2) If the petitioning creditor is a secured creditor, he
must, in his petition, either state that he is willing to give
up his security for the benefit of the creditors in the event
of the debtor being adjudged bankrupt, or give an estimate
of the value of his security. In the latter case, he may be
admitted as a petitioning creditor to the extent of the balance
of the debt due to him, after deducting the value so estimated
in the same manner as if he were an unsecured creditor.

7. (1) A creditor's petition shall be verified by affidavit :;,"d$"gs and
(of the creditor, or of some person in his behalf, having Creditor's
knowledge of the facts) and served in the prescribed manner. petition.

(2) At the hearing the Court shall require proof of the
debt of the petitioning creditor, of the service of the petition
and of the act of bankruptcy, or, if more than one act of
bankruptcy is alleged in the petition, of some one of the
alleged acts of bankruptcy, and, if satisfied with the proof,
may make a receiving order in pursuance of the petition.

(3) If the Court is not satisfied with the proof of the
petitioning creditor's debt, or of the act of bankruptcy, or
of the service of the petition, or is satisfied by the debtor
that he is able to pay his debts, or that for other sufficient
cause no order ought to be made, the Court may dismiss
the petition.

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12 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

(4) When the act of bankruptcy relied on is non-
compliance with a bankruptcy notice to pay, secure or com-
pound for a judgment debt, the Court may, if it thinks fit,
stay or dismiss the petition on the ground that an appeal
is pending from the judgment.

(5) Where the debtor appears on the petition, and denies
that he is indebted to the petitioner, or that he is indebted
to such an amount as would justify the petitioner, in presen-
ting a petition against him, the Court, on such security (if
any) being given as the Court may require for payment to
the petitioner of any debt which may be established against
him in due course of law, and of the costs of establishing
the debt, may, instead of dismissing the petition, stay all
proceedings on the petition for such time as may be required
for trial of the question relating to the debt.

(6) Where proceedings are stayed, the Court may, if
by reason of the delay caused by the stay of proceedings or
for any other case it thinks just, make a receiving order on
the petition of some other creditor, and shall thereupon
dismiss, on such terms as it thinks just, the petition in which
proceedings have been stayed as aforesaid.

(7) A creditor's petition shall not, after presentment,
be withdrawn without the leave of the Court.

Debtor's petition 8. (1) A debtor's petition shall allege that the debtor
and order
thereon. is unable to pay his debts, and the presentation thereof shall

be deemed an act of bankruptcy without the previous filing
by the debtor of any declaration of inability to pay his debts,
and the Court shall thereupon make a receiving order.

(2) A debtor's petition shall not, after presentation, be
withdrawn without the leave of the Court.

Effect of
receiving order.

9. (1) On the making of a receiving order an official
receiver shall be thereby constituted receiver of the property
of the debtor, and thereafter except as directed by this Act,
no creditor to whom the debtor is indebted in respect of any
debt provable in bankruptcy shall have any remedy against
the property or person of the debtor in respect of the debt,
or shall commence any action or other legal proceedings

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 13

unless with the leave of the Court, and on such terms as
the Court may impose.

(2) This section shall not affect the power of any secured
creditor to realize or otherwise deal with his security in the
same manner as he would have been entitled to realize or
deal with it if this section had not been passed.

10. (1) The Court may, if it is shown to be necessary Discretionar).
power of Court for the protection of the estate, at any time after the presen- to

tation of a bankruptcy petition, and before a receiving order appointment of
receiver and stay is made, appoint the official receiver to be interim receiver of proceedings.

of the property of the debtor, or of any part thereof, and
direct him to take immediate possession thereof or of any
part thereof.

(2) The Court may at any time after the presentation
of a bankruptcy petition stay any action, execution or other
legal process against the property or person of the debtor,
and any Court in which proceedings are pending against
a debtor may, on proof that a bankruptcy petition has been
presented by or against the debtor, either stay the proceedings
or allow them to continue on such terms as it may think just.

11. Where the Court makes an order staying any :;:$.$ Order
action or proceeding or staying proceedings generally, the proceedings.
order may be served by sending a copy thereof, under the
seal of the Court, by prepaid post letter to the address for
service of the plaintiff or other party prosecuting such
proceeding.

12. (1) The official receiver of a debtor's estate, may, ~ ; ~ ; , t ; ; ~ ~ ; ~ ~
and if satisfied that the nature of the debtor's estate or
business or the interests of the creditors generally require
the appointment of a special manager of the estate or business
other than the official receiver, appoint with the consent of
a Judge a manager thereof accordingly to act until a trustee
is appointed and with such powers (including any of the
powers of a receiver) as may be entrusted to him by the oficial
receiver.

(2) The special manager shall give security and account
in such manner as the prescribed authority may direct.

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14 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

(3) The special manager shall receive such remunera-
tion as the creditors may, by resolution at an ordinary
meeting, determine, or in default of any such resolution,
as may be prescribed.

Advertisement of
receiving order.

13. Notice of every receiving order, stating the name,
address and description of the debtor, the date of the order,
and the date of the petition, shall be gazetted and advertised
in the prescribed manner.

Proceedings Consequent on Order

First and other
meetings of

14. (1) As soon as may be after the making of a
creditors. receiving order against a debtor a general meeting of his

creditors (in this Act referred to as the first meeting of
creditors) shall be held for the purpose of considering whether
the proposal for a composition or scheme of arrangement
shall be entertained, or whether it is expedient that the deb-
tor shall be adjudged bankrupt, and generally as to the mode
of dealing with the debtor's property.

(2) With respect to the summoning of and proceedings
at the first and other meetings of creditors, the rules in the

First Schedule. First Schedule shall be observed.

Debtor's
Statement of

15. (1) Where a receiving order is made against a
affairs. debtor, he shall make out and submit to the official receiver

a statement of and in relation to his affairs in the prescribed
form, verified by affidavit, and showing the particulars of
the debtor's assets, debts and liabilities, the names, residences
and occupations of his creditors, the securities held by them
respectively, the dates when the securities were respectively
given, and such further or other information as may be
prescribed or as the official receiver may require.

(2) The statement shall be so submitted within the
following times, namely:

(i) If the order is made on the petition of the deb-
tor, within three days from the date of the
order.

(ii) If the order is made on the petition of a creditor
within seven days from the date of the order.

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41

But the official receiver or the Court may, in either case,
for special reasons extend the time.

(3) If the debtor fails, without reasonable excuse to com-
ply with the requirements of this section, the Court may,
on the application of the official receiver, or of any creditor,
adjudge him bankrupt.

(4) Any person stating himself in writing to be a creditor
of the bankrupt may, personally or by agent, inspect this
statement at all reasonable times, and take any copy thereof,
or extracts therefrom, but any person untruthfully so stating
himself to be a creditor shall be guilty of a contempt of Court,
and shall be punishable accordingly on the application of
the trustee or official receiver.

Public Examination of Debtor

16. (1) Where the Court makes a receiving order of
it shall hold a public sitting on a day to be appointed by debtor.
the Court, for the examination of the debtor, and the deb-
tor shall attend thereat, and shall be examined as to his con-
duct, dealings and property.

(2) The examination shall be held as soon as conve-
niently may be after the expiration of the time for the sub-
mission of the debtor's statement of affairs.

(3) The Court may adjourn the examination from time
to time.

(4) Any creditor who has tendered a proof, or his
representative authorized in writing, may question the deb-
tor concerning his affairs and the causes of his failure.

(5) The official receiver shall take part in the examina-
tion of the debtor; and for the purpose thereof, if specially
authorized by the prescribed authority may employ a solicitor.

(6) If a trustee is appointed before the conclusion of
the examination he may take part therein.

(7) The Court may put such questions to the debtor
as it may think expedient.

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CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

(8) The debtor shall be examined upon oath, and it shall
be his duty to answer all such questions as the Court may
put or allow to be put to him. Such notes of the examination
as the Court thinks proper shall be taken down in writing,
and shall be read over to and signed by the debtor, and may
thereafter be used in evidence against him; they shall also
be open to the inspection of any creditor at all reasonable
times.

(9) When the Court is of opinion that the affairs of the
debtor have been sufficiently investigated, it shall by order,
declare that his examination is concluded, but such order
shall not be made until after the day appointed for the first
meeting of creditors.

Composition or Scheme of Arrangement

Power for 17. (1) The creditors may at the first meeting, or any
creditor to accept
and Court to adjournment thereof, by special resolution, resolve to enter-
approve tain a proposal for a composition in satisfaction of the debts
composition or
arrangement. due to them from the debtor, or a proposal for a scheme

of arrangement of the debtor's affairs.

(2) The composition or scheme shall not be binding on
the creditors unless it is confirmed by a resolution passed
(by a majority in number representing three-fourths in value
of all the creditors who have proved) at a subsequent meeting
of the creditors, and is approved by the prescribed authority:

Provided that where in the notice convening the first
meeting of creditors notice of the proposed composition has
been given in the prescribed manner and such composition
has been app

r

oved by three-fourths in value of the creditors
the composition if approved by the prescribed authority shall
be binding without being confirmed at a subsequent meeting
of creditors.

Any creditor who has proved his debt may assent to
or dissent from such composition or scheme by a letter ad-
dressed to the official receiver in the prescribed form, and
attested by a witness, so as to be received by such official
receiver not later than the day preceding such first or subse-
quent meeting as the case may be, and such creditor shall
attend thereat, and shall be examined as to his conduct, deal-
ings and property.

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 4 1

(3) The subsequent meeting shall be summoned by the
official receiver by not less than seven days' notice, and shall
not be held until after the public examination of the debtor
is concluded. The notice shall state generally the terms of
the proposal, and shall be accompanied by a report of the
official receiver thereon. The debtor or the official receiver
may, after the composition or scheme is accepted by the
creditors and the public examination of the debtor is con-
cluded, apply to the Court to approve it, and notice of the
time appointed for hearing the application shall be given to
each creditor who has proved.

(4) The prescribed authority shall, before approving a
composition or scheme, hear a report of the official receiver
as to the terms of the composition or scheme and as to the
conduct of the debtor, and any objections which may be made
by or on behalf of any creditor.

( 5 ) If the prescribed authority is of opinion that the
terms of the composition or scheme are not reasonable, or
not calculated to benefit the general body of creditors, or
in any case in which the Court is required under this Act
where the debtor is adjudged bankrupt to refuse his discharge,
the prescribed authority shall, or if any such facts are proved
as would under this Act justify the Court in refusing, quali-
fying, or suspending the debtor's discharge, the prescribed
authority may, in its discretion, refuse to approve the com-
position or scheme.

(6) Where the prescribed authority is not the Court,
an appeal shall lie to the Court from the decision of the
prescribed authority.

(7) If the Court approves the composition or scheme,
the approval may be testified by the seal of the Court being
attached to the instrument containing the terms of the com-
position or scheme, or by the terms being embodied in an
order of the Court. The approval of the prescribed authority
may be testified by order in the prescribed manner.

(8) A composition or scheme accepted and approved
in pursuance of this section shall be binding on all the
creditors so far as relates to any debts due to them from
the debtor and provable in bankruptcy.

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18 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

(9) A certificate of the official receiver that a composi-
tion or scheme has been duly accepted and approved shall,
in the absence of fraud, be conclusive as to its validity.

(10) The provisions of a composition or scheme under
this section may be enforced by the Court on application
by any person interested, and any disobedience of an order
of the Court made on the application shall be deemed a con-
tempt of Court.

(1 1) If default is made in payment of any instalment
due in pursuance of the composition .or scheme, or if it
appears to the Court, on satisfactory evidence, that the com-
position or scheme cannot, in consequence of legal difficulties,
or for any sufficient cause, proceed without injustice or undue
delay to the creditors or to the debtor, or that the approval
of the Court was obtained by fraud, the Court may, if it
thinks fit, on application by any creditor, adjudge the deb-
tor bankrupt, and annul the composition or scheme, but
without prejudice to the validity of any sale, disposition, or
payment, duly made, or thing duly done under or in pur-
suance of the composition or scheme. Where a debtor is
adjudged bankrupt under this subsection any debt provable
in other respects, which has been contracted before the date
of the adjudication, shall be provable in the bakruptcy.

(12) If, under or in pursuance of a composition or
scheme, a trustee is appointed to administer the debtor's pro-
perty or manage his business, Part V shall apply to the trustee
as if he were a trustee in bankruptcy, and as if the terms
" bankruptcy," "bankrupt," and "order of adjudication,"
included respectively a composition or scheme of arrange-
ment, a compounding or arranging debtor, and an order
approving the composition or scheme, and shall extend to
the distribution of the composition.

(13) Part I11 shall, so far as the nature of the case and
the terms of the composition or scheme admit, apply thereto,
the same interpretation being given to the words "trustee,"
" bankruptcy ," "bankrupt," and "order of adjudication,"
as in the last preceding subsection.

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Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 19

(14) No composition or scheme shall be approved by
the prescribed authority or by the Court which does not pro-
vide for the payment in priority to other debts of all debts
directed to be so paid in the distribution of the property of
a bankrupt.

(15) The acceptance by a creditor of a composition or
scheme shall not release any person who under this Act would
not be released by an order of discharge if the debtor has
been adjudged bankrupt.

18. Notwithstanding the acceptance and approval of Effect of
a composition or scheme, such composition or scheme shall Or

not be binding on any creditor so far as regards a debt or
liability, from which, under the provisions of this Act, a deb-
tor would not be discharged by an order of discharge in
bar~kruptcy, unless the creditor assents to the composition
or scheme.

Adjudication of Bankruptcy

19. (1) When a receiving order is made against a Adjudication of
debtor then, if the creditors at the first meeting or any b,a:yptcy
adjournment thereof by ordinary resolution resolve that the composition not
debtor be adjudged bankrupt, or pass no resolution, or if :~;,~,:,d~dpr
the creditors do not meet, or if a composition or scheme is
not. accepted or approved in pursuance of this Act within
fourteen days after the conclusion of the examination of the
debtor or such further time as the Court may allow, the Court
shall adjudge the debtor bankrupt, and thereupon the
property of the bankrupt shall become divisible among his
creditors and shall vest in a trustee.

(2) Notice of every order adjudging a debtor bankrupt,
stating the name, address, and description of the bankrupt,
the date of the adjudication, and the district of the Court
in which the adjudication is made, shall be gazetted and
advertised in the district in the prescribed manner, and the
date of the order shall for the purposes of this Act be the
date of the adjudication.

20. (1) Where a debtor is adjudged bankrupt, or the 22: tment of
creditors have resolved that he be adjudged bankrupt, the

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

creditors may, by ordinary resolution, appoint some fit per-
son, whether a creditor or not, to fill the office of trustee
of the property of the bankrupt; or they may resolve to leave
his appointment to the committee of inspection hereinafter
mentioned.

(2) The person so appointed shall give security in man-
ner prescribed to the satisfaction of the prescribed authority
and the prescribed authority if satisfied with the security,
shall certify that his appointment has been duly made, unless
it objects to the appointment on the ground that it has not
been made in good faith by a majority in value of the creditors
voting, or that the person appointed is not fit to act as trustee,
or that his connection with or relation to the bankrupt or
his estate or any particular creditor makes it difficult for him
to act with impartiality in the interests of the creditors
generally, or that there is other good reason for objecting
to the appointment.

(3) Provided that where the prescribed authority (not
being the Court itself) makes any such objection it shall if
so requested by a majority in value of the creditors, notify
the objection to the Court and thereupon the Court may
decide upon its validity.

(4) The appointment of a trustee should take effect as
from the date of the certificate.

(5) If a trustee is not appointed by the creditors within
four weeks from the date of the adjudication, or, in the event
of negotiations for a composition or scheme being pending
at the expiration of those four weeks, then within seven days,
from the close of those negotiations by the refusal of the
creditors to accept, or of the prescribed authority or the Court
to approve, the composition or scheme, the official-receiver
shall report the matter to the prescribed authority and
thereupon the prescribed authority shall appoint some fit per-
son to be trustee of the bankrupt's property, and shall cer-
tify the appointment.

(6) Provided that the creditors or the committee of in-
spection (if so authorized by resolution of the creditors) may,
at any subsequent time, if they think fit, appoint a trustee,

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Bankruptcy (CAP. 41

and on the appointment being made and certified, the per-
son appointed shall become trustee in the place of the per-
son appointed by the prescribed authority aforesaid.

(7) When a debtor is adjudged bankrupt after the first
meeting of creditors has been held, and a trustee has not
been appointed prior to the adjudication, the official receiver
shall forthwith summon a meeting of creditors for the pur-
poses of appointing a trustee.

2 1. (1) The creditors qualified to vote, may at their g;:i:r
first or any subsequent meeting, by resolution, appoint from
among the creditois qualified to-vote, or the holdeEs of general
proxies or general powers of attorney from such creditors,
a committee of inspection for the purpose of superintending
the administration of the bankrupt's property by the trustee.
The committee of inspection shall consist of not more than
five nor less than three persons.

(2) The committee of inspection shall meet at such times
as they shall from time to time appoint, and failing such
appointment, at least once a month; and the trustee or any
member of the committee may also call a meeting of the
committee as and when he thinks necessary.

(3) The committee may act by a majority of their
members present at a meeting, but shall not act unless a
majority of the committee is present at the meeting.

(4) Any member of the committee may resign his of-
fice by notice in writing signed by him, and delivered to
the trustee.

(5) If a member of the committee becomes bankrupt
or compounds or arranges with his creditors, or is absent
from five consecutive meetings of the committee, his office
shall thereupon become vacant.

(6) Any member of the committee may be removed by
an ordinary resolution at any meeting of creditors of which
seven days' notice has been given stating the object of the
meeting.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

22 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

(7) On a vacancy occurring in the office of a member
of the committee, the trustee shall forthwith summon a
meeting of creditors for the purpose of filling the vacancy,
and the meeting may, by resolution, appoint another creditor
or other person eligible as above to fill the vacancy.

(8) The continuing members of the committee, provided
there be not less than two such continuing members, may
act notwithstanding any vacancy in their body; and where
the number of members of the committee of inspection is
for the time being less than five, the creditors may increase
that number so that it does not exceed five.

(9) If there be no committee of inspection, any act or
thing or any direction or permission by this Act authorized
or required to be done or given by the committee may be
done or given by the prescribed authority on the application
of the trustee.

Power to accept
composition or

22. (1) Where a debtor is adjudged bankrupt the
scheme after creditors may, if they think fit, at any time after adjudica-
bankruptcy tion, by special resolution, resolve to entertain a proposal
adjudication.

for a composition in satisfaction of the debts due to them
under the bankruptcy, or for a scheme of arrangement of
the bankrupt's affairs; and thereupon the same proceedings
shall be taken and the same consequences shall ensue as in
the case of a composition or scheme accepted before
adjudication.

(2) If the Court approves the composition or scheme
it may make an order annulling the bankruptcy and vesting
the property of the bankrupt in him or in such other person
as the Court may appoint on such terms, and subject to such
conditions, if any, as the Court may declare.

(3) If default is made in payment of any instalment due
in pursuance of the composition or scheme, or if it appears
to the Court that the composition or scheme cannot proceed
without injustice or undue delay, or that the approval of the
Court was obtained by fraud, the Court may, if it thinks
fit, on application by any person interested, adjudge the deb-
tor bankrupt, and annul the composition or scheme, but
without prejudice to the validity of any sale, disposition or

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 2 3

payment duly made, or thing duly done, under or in pur-
suance of the composition or scheme. Where a debtor is ad-
judged bankrupt under this subsection, all debts, provable
in other respects, which have been contracted before the date
of such adjudication shall be provable in the bankruptcy.

Control over Person and Property of Debtor

23. (1) Every debtor against whom a receiving order Duties of debtor
as to discovery

is made shall, unless prevented by sickness or other suffi- .,d
cient cause, attend the first meeting of his creditors, and shall property.
submit to such examination and give such information as
the meeting may require.

(2) H e shall give such inventory of his property, such
list of his creditors and debtors, and of the debts due to and
from them respectively, submit to such examination in respect
of his property or his creditors attend such other meetings
of his creditors, wait at such times on the official receiver,
special manager, or trustee, execute such powers of attorney,
conveyances, deeds, and instruments, and generally do all
such acts and things in relation to his property and the
distribution of the proceeds amongst his creditors, as may
be reasonably required by the official receiver, special
manager, or trustee, or may be prescribed by general rules,
or be directed by the Court by any special order or orders
made in reference to any particular case, or made on the
occasion of any special application by the official receiver,
special manager, trustee, or any creditor or person interested.

(3) He shall, if adjudged bankrupt, aid, to the utmost
of his power, in the realization of his property and the
distribution of the proceeds among his creditors.

(4) If a debtor wilfully fails to perform the duties
imposed on him by this section, or to deliver up possession
of any part of his property, which is divisible amongst his
creditors under this Act, and which is for the time being
in his possession or under his control, to the official receiver
or to the trustee, or to any person authorized by the Court
to take possession of it, he shall, in addition to any other
punishment to which he may be subject, be guilty of a con-
tempt of Court, and may be punished accordingly.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

24 CAP. 41) Bankrupty

Arrest of debtor
under certain

24. (1) The Court may, by warrant addressed to any
circumstances. constable or prescribed officer of the Court, cause a debtor

to be arrested, and any books, papers, money, and goods
in his possession to be seized, and him and them to be safely
kept as prescribed until such time as the Court may order
under the following circumstances;

( a ) If after a bankruptcy notice has been issued
under this Act, or after presentation of a bankruptcy
petition by or against him, it appears to the Court that
there is probable reason for believing that he is about
to abscond with a view to avoiding payment of the debt
in respect of which the bankruptcy notice was issued,
or of avoiding service of a bankruptcy petition or of
avoiding appearance to any such petition, or of avoiding
examination in respect of his affairs, or of otherwise
avoiding, delaying, or embarrassing proceedings in
bankruptcy against him.

( b ) If, after presentation of a bankruptcy petition
by or against him, it appears to the Court that there
is probably cause for believing that he is about to remove
his goods with a view of preventing or delaying posses-
sion being taken of them by the official receiver or
trustee, or that there is probable ground for believing
that he has concealed or is about to conceal or destroy
any of his goods, or any books, documents, or writings
which might be of use to his creditors in the course of
his bankruptcy.

(c) If after service of a bankruptcy petition on him
or after a receiving order is made against him, he
removes any goods in his possession above the value
of twenty-four dollars, without the leave of the official
receiver or trustee.

(6) If, without good cause shown, he fails to attend
any examination ordered by the Court:

Provided that no arrest upon a bankruptcy notice shall
be valid and protected unless the debtor before or at
any time of his arrest shall be served with such bankrupt-
cy notice.

(2) No payment or composition made or security given
after arrest made under this section shall be exempt from
the provisions of this Act relating to fraudulent preferences.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Bankruptcy (CAP. 41

25. Where a receiving order is made against a deb- ~e-direction of
debtor's letters.

tor, the Court, on the application of the official receiver or
trustee, may from time to time order that for such time not
exceeding three months, as the Court thinks fit, post letters
addressed to the debtor at any place, or places mentioned
in the order for re-direction, shall be re-directed, sent or
delivered by the Postmaster of Antigua and Barbuda or the
officers acting under him, to the official receiver, or the
trustee, or otherwise as the Court directs, and the same shall
be done accordingly.

26. (1) The Court may, on the application of the ::;;;;:Y of
official receiver or trustee, at any time after a receiving order property.
has been made against a debtor, summon before it the deb- -
tor or his wife, or any person known or suspected to have
in his possession any of the estate or effects belonging to
the debtor, or supposed to be indebted to the debtor, or any
person whom the Court may deem capable of giving infor-
mation respecting the debtor, his dealings or property, and
the Court may require any such person to produce any
documents in his custody or power relating to the debtor,
his dealings or property.

(2) If any person so summoned, after having been
tendered a reasonable sum, refuses to come before the Court
at the time appointed or refuses to produce any such docu-
ment, having no lawful impediment made known to the Court
at the time of its sitting and allowed by it, the Court may,
by warrant, cause him to be apprehended and brought up
for examination.

(3) The Court may examine on oath, either by word
of mouth or by written interrogatories, any person so brought
before 'it concerning the debtor, his dealings or property.

(4) If any person on examination before the Court ad-
mits that he is indebted to the debtor, the Court may, on
the application of the official receiver or trustee, order him
to pay to the receiver or trustee, at such time and in such
manner as to the Court seems expedient, the amount
admitted, or any part thereof, either in full discharge of the
whole amount in question or not, as the Court thinks fit,
with or without costs of the examination.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

2 6 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

Discharge
bankrupt.

Cap. 131.

(5) If any person on examination before the Court
admits that he has in his possession any property belonging
to the debtor, the Court may, on the application of the official
receiver or trustee, order him to deliver to the official receiver
or trustee such property, or any part thereof, at such time,
and in such manner, and on such terms as to the Court may
seem just.

( 6 ) The Court may, if it think fit, order that any per-
son who if in Antigua and Barbuda would be liable to be
brought before it under this section shall be examined in
any other place out of Antigua and Barbuda.

Discharge of Bankrupt
of 27. (1) A bankrupt may, at any time after being

adjudged bankrupt, apply to the Court for an order of
discharge, and the Court shall appoint a day for hearing
the application, but the application shall not be heard until
the public examination of the bankrupt is concluded. The
application shall be heard in open Court.

( 2 ) On the hearing of the application the Court shall
take into consideration a report of the official receiver as
to the bankrupt's conduct and affairs, and may either grant
or refuse an absolute order of discharge, or suspend the opera-
tion of the order for a specified time, or grant an order of
discharge subject to any conditions with respect to any earn-
ings or income which may afterwards become due to the
bankrupt, or with respect to his after-acquired property:

Provided that the Court shall refuse the discharge-

( a ) In all cases where the bankrupt has committed
any misdemeanour under this Act or under the Deb-
tors Act or any amendment thereof.

( 6 ) In all cases where it is not proved or shown
to the satisfaction of the Court that the estate of the
debtor has yielded or might with reasonable care have
yielded sufficient to pay a dividend to his creditors of
not less than fifty cents in the dollar unless the Court
is satisfied on consideration of a reDort bv the official
receiver that the debtor's failure has arisen from cir-
cumstances for which he cannot justly be held respon-
sible that he has not been guilty of any of the offences

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 27

or facts enumerated in this section and that he has not
been in fault in not having suspended payment of his
debts at an earlier period.

The Court shall on proof of any of the facts hereinafter
mentioned either refuse the order or suspend the operation
of the order for a specified time or grant an order of discharge
subject to such conditions as aforesaid.

(3) The facts hereinbefore referred to are:

(a) That the bankrupt has omitted to keep such
books of account as are usual and proper in the business
carried on by him, and as sufficiently disclose his
business transactions and financial position within the
three years immediately preceding the bankruptcy.

( b ) That the bankrupt has continued to trade after
knowing himself to be insolvent.

(6) That the bankrupt has contracted any debt pro-
vable in the bankruptcy without having at the time of
contracting it any reasonable or probable ground of
expectation (proof whereof shall lie on him) of being
able to pay it.

(d) That the bankrupt has brought on his bankrupt-
cy by rash. and hazardous speculation or unjustifiable
extravagance in living, or by recklessness or want of
reasonable care and attention to his business and affairs.

(e) That the bankrupt has put any of his creditors
to unnecessary expense by a frivolous or vexatious
defence to any action properly brought against him.

Cf) That the bankrupt has within three months
preceding the date of the receiving order, when unable
to pay his debts as they become due, given an undue
preference to any of his creditors.

@) That the bankrupt has on any previous occa-
sions been adjudged bankrupt, or made a composition
or arrangement with his creditors.

(h) That the bankrupt has been guilty of any fraud
or fraudulent breach of trust.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

Fraudulent
settlements.

(4) For the purposes of this section the report of the
official receiver shall be prima facie evidence of the statements
therein contained.

(5) Notice of the appointment by the Court of the day
for hearing the application for discharge shall be published
in the prescribed manner and sent fourteen days at least
before the day so appointed to each creditor who has prov-
ed, and the Court may hear the official receiver, and the
trustee, and may also hear any creditor. At the hearing the
Court may put such questions to the debtor and receive such
evidence as it may think fit.

(6) The Court may, as one of the conditions referred
to in this section, require the bankrupt to consent to judg-
ment being entered against him by the official receiver or
trustee for any balance of the debts provable under the
bankruptcy which is not satisfied at the date of his discharge
or any part thereof; but in such case execution shall not be
issued on the judgment without leave of the Court, which
leave may be given on proof that the bankrupt has since
his discharge acquired property or income available for pay-
ment of his debts.

(7) A discharged bankrupt shall, notwithstanding his
discharge, give such assistance as the trustee may require
in the realization and distribution of such of his property
as is vested in the trustee, and if he fails to do so he shall
be guilty of a contempt of Court; and the Court may also,
if it thinks fit, revoke his discharge; but without prejudice
to the validity of any sale, disposition or payment duly made
or thing duly done subsequent to the discharge but before
its revocation.

28. In either of the following cases; that is to say,

(1) In the case of a settlement made before and in con-
sideration of marriage where the settler is not at the time
of making the settlement able to pay all his debts without
the aid of the property comprised in the settlement; or

(2) In the case of any covenant or contract made in
consideration of marriage for the future settlement on or for
the settler's wife or children of any money or property

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Bankruptcy (CAP. 41

wherein he had not at the date of his marriage any estate
or interest (not being money or property of or in right of
his wife);

If the settler is adjudged bankrupt or compounds or arranges
with his creditors, and it appears to the Court that such set-
tlement, covenant, or contract was made in order to defeat
or delay creditors, or was unjustifiable having regard to the
state of the settler's affairs at the time when it was made,
the Court may refuse or suspend an order of discharge, or
grant an order subject to conditions, or refuse to approve
a composition or arrangement, as the case may be, in like
manner as in cases where the debtor has been guilty of fraud.

29. (1) An order of discharge shall not release the Effect of order of
discharge. bankrupt from any debt on a recognizance, nor from any

debt with which the bankrupt may be chargeable at the suit
of the Crown or of any person for any offence against a statute
relating to any branch of the public revenue, or at the suit
of the Provost Marshal or other public officer on a bail bond
entered into for the appearance of any person prosecuted
for any such offence; and he shall not be discharged from
such excepted debts unless the prescribed authority certify
in writing its consent to his being discharged therefrom. An
order of discharge shall not release the bankrupt from any
debt or liability incurred by means of any fraud or fraudulent
breach of trust to which he was a party, nor from any debt
or liability whereof he has obtained forebearance by any fraud
to which he was a party, nor from any claim arising from
breach of promise of marriage, seduction, slander, libel,
assault, or from a judgment against a co-respondent in a
matrimonial cause.

(2) An order of discharge shall release the bankrupt from
all other debts provable in bankruptcy.

(3) An order of discharge shall be conclusive evidence
of the bankruptcy, and of the validity of the proceedings
therein, and in any proceeding that may be instituted against
a bankrupt who has obtained an order of discharge in respect
of any debt from which he is released by the order, the
bankrupt may plead that the cause of action occurred before
his discharge, and may give this Act and the special matter
in evidence.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

30 CAP. 41) Bankruptcy

(4) An order of discharge shall not release any person
who at the date of the receiving order was a partner or co-
trustee with the bankrupt or was jointly bound or had made
any joint contract with him or any person who was surety
or in the nature of a surety for him.

Undischarged
bankrupt

30. Where an undischarged bankrupt who has been
obtaining credit adjudged bankrupt under this Act obtains credit to the extent
to extent of bg6 of ninety-six dollars or upwards from any person without
to be guilty of
misdemeanour. informing such person that he is an undischarged bankrupt,

he shall be guilty of a misdemeanour, and may be dealt with
and punished as if he had been guilty of a misdemeanour

cap. 131. under the Debtors Act and the provisions of that Act shall
apply to proceedings under this section.

Disqualifiations of Bankrupt
Vacating of seat
as member of

31. If a person is adjudged bankrupt whilst he is a
oublic member of any public authority his seat as member of such '

public author&; shall thereupon become vacant.

Court may annul
adjudication in

32. (1) Where in the opinion of the Court a debtor
cases. ought not to have been adjudged bankrupt or where it is

proved to the satisfaction of the Court that the debts of the
bankrupt are paid in full the Court may on the application
of any person interested, by order, annul the adjudication.

(2) Where an adjudication is annulled under this sec-
tion all sales and dispositions of property and payments duly
made and all acts theretofore done, by the official receiver,
trustee or other person acting under his authority, or by the
Court shall be valid, but the property of the debtor who was
adjudged bankrupt shall vest in such person as the Court
may appoint or in default of any such appointment revert
to the debtor for all his estate or interest therein on such
terms and subject to such conditions, if any, as the Court
may declare by order.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Bankruptcy (CAP. 41 3 1

(3) Notice of the order annulling an adjudication shall
be forthwith gazetted and published locally.

33. For the purposes of this Part, any debt disputed Mr;z'.a 2 debts
by a debtor shall be considered as paid in full, if the debtor in full.
enters into a bond, in such sum and with such securities
as the Court approves, to pay the amount to be recovered
in any proceedings for the recovery of or concerning the debt,
with cost, and any debt due to a creditor who cannot be
found or cannot be identified shall be considered as paid
in full if paid into Court.

Administration of Property

Proof of Debts

34. (1) Demands in the nature of unliquidated ~~~~~~~~~~ in
damages arising otherwise than by reason of a contract, pro- bankruptcy.
mise, or breach of trust shall not be provable in bankruptcy.

(2) A person having notice of any act of bankruptcy
available against a debtor shall not prove under the order
for any debt or liability contracted by the debtor subsequently
to the date of his so having notice.

(3) Save as aforesaid, all debts and liabilities, present
or future, certain or contingent, to which the debtor is sub-
ject at the date of the receiving order, or to which he may
become subject before his discharge by reason of any obliga-
tion incurred before the date of the receiving order, shall
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