Number of house repossession cases falls by 32%

‘Hopefully this is a sign that the effects of our great recession are fading,’ says Chief Justice

Forward planning is vital if the housing needs of an aging population are to be met close to amenities and transport services. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Forward planning is vital if the housing needs of an aging population are to be met close to amenities and transport services. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

 

There was a sharp fall-off last year in the number of house repossession cases that came before the courts.

The latest annual report for the Courts Service shows a continuing change in the way the economic crash is manifesting itself in the legal system.

New possession cases fell 32 per cent compared with 2015. In 2014, the number of cases was 111 per cent higher than last year.

“Hopefully this is a sign that the effects of our great recession are fading, and that the alternative mechanisms for dealing with personal debt are successful for many,” Chief Justice Susan Denham said.

A total of 1,135 possession orders were made in 2016. Most of these were in the Circuit Court, with 47 occurring in the High Court.

There was a 22 per cent increase in the use of the debt resolution mechanisms introduced by the Personal Insolvency Act 2012. There were 2,114 such applications received in the Circuit Court under the mechanism, which is a 125 per cent increase over 2014.

Bankruptcy

On bankruptcy, the figures show that 95 per cent of all applications were from individuals applying to be made bankrupt.

A total of 526 people were adjudicated bankrupt, with only 28 of these being on foot of applications from creditors. Over the last two years there has been a 17 per cent increase in bankruptcies.

In relation to business matters, the figures show that the number of applications for orders to disqualify people from acting as company directors increased to 47, from just two the previous year, while the number of applications for restriction orders fell to 29, from 47 in 2015.

The number of company wind up orders made was 50, only one down on the previous year.