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Sean
Sean, Experienced lawyer
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 852
Experience:  Law degree with 1st class honours from Australian National University.
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If any of my creditors convince ITSA that I have assets of

Resolved Question:

If any of my creditors convince ITSA that I have assets of value, which I do not, can ITSA search my house? I have been honest in what I have declared but I share with my boyfriend and there is a worry that they will do this. My petition was accepted by ITSA just last week.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Sean replied 11 months ago.

Hello and thank you for your question. I'm afraid they do have a right of access to your house.

Under the Bankruptcy Act 1996 (Cth), the Official Receiver is entitled at all reasonable times to full and free access to premises and books for the purpose of the Act. Here is what they Act says:

77AA Access by Official Receiver and others to premises

(1) The Official Receiver, or an officer authorised in writing by the Official Receiver to exercise powers under this section, is entitled at all reasonable times to full and free access to all premises and books for any purpose of this Act, and for that purpose:

(a) may make copies of, or take extracts from, books; and

(b) may remove from premises any books that the Official Receiver or officer reasonably considers may be relevant to the examinable affairs of:

(i) a bankrupt whose affairs are being administered under Part IV; or
(ii) a person who is a party (as debtor) to a debt agreement; or
(iii) a debtor whose affairs are being administered under Part X; or
(iv) a deceased debtor whose affairs are being administered under Part XI or are subject to a debt agreement.

Also, sub-section (3) provides that:

The occupier of any premises entered or proposed to be entered by the Official Receiver, or by an officer, under subsection (1) must provide the Official Receiver or officer with all reasonable facilities and assistance for the effective exercise of powers under this section.

Please let me know if you need any more information.

Regards,
Sean
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

Does this only apply to my books and records or does it also apply to my possessions. Can they take items? I have nothing of value.


 


My boyfriend is not a debtor. Are his possessions at risk of being involved? Can they ask to see his books? He is listed on my debtors petition only as my partner and his yearly income.

Expert:  Sean replied 11 months ago.

No, this does not give them power to take possessions - it only gives them the power to take books and records relevant to determining what assets etc you have. They would need to get a court order to take possessions.

If your boyfriend has book and records on the premises they could also ask to see them if they are relevant to determining what assets etc you have. The Act gives unfettered right of access to premises, it doesn't specify who must own the books and records.

Sean, Experienced lawyer
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 852
Experience: Law degree with 1st class honours from Australian National University.
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