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Trusted Kenneth Hunt – who took funds behind his clients’ backs – was made bankrupt after a petition was filed against him by the Law Society

A trusted solicitor who had to pay back thousands of pounds after running a £1m fraud has now been made bankrupt.

Kenneth Hunt was jailed in 2012 after siphoning money from his clients’ accounts to keep his firm going.

The 66-year-old – whose business portfolio included the development of Newcastle’s Quayside – was caught in the “perfect storm” when the global economic crisis struck, the court heard at the time.

And by the time he was finally arrested while on holiday in the Caribbean, the lawyer had siphoned off £1,049,000.

Now it has emerged that he has been made bankrupt, after a petition was filed against him by The Law Society.

He was also disqualified from being a company director last year.

Most of the cash Hunt took was to prop up his ailing firm as the economic and banking crisis began to bite. But Hunt personally pocketed cash as well.

After a detailed investigation into his finances, he was ordered to pay back every penny that he had left. Hunt was found to have taken more than £64,000 himself, and was ordered to pay back £30,000 in a Proceeds of Crime Act hearing in 2012.

Earlier that year, he had been given a four-year sentence after admitting fraud by abuse of position, but the sentence was later cut to three years by appeal judges.

His business partner Barbara Gayton, of South Gosforth, Newcastle, was jailed for two years for her part in the fraud.

The sentencing hearing in 2012 was told how Hunt, of Alnwick, Northumberland, had staged a “flagrant breach of trust” by moving lump sums from client accounts without their knowledge.

When police went to arrest him in late 2009, he had paid more than £30,000 for the financing of his cars.

Hunt repeatedly claimed to have the means to repay the debts, stating that he had £5m invested in companies, £2.5m worth of assets and was a wealthy man.

By July 2010 – nearly 12 months after an investigation was first launched – he said that he was in due diligence to raise £10m which would repay his debts. But that money never appeared, and he was just desperate to keep his reputation for success intact and preserve his lifestyle, the court heard.

Hunt himself told police he did not want to see his distinguished career end “in a mess”.

Of course debt linked depression exists. Most ordinary people have felt it. Maxed out credit cards and overdraft facilities … payday loans … the spectre of County Court Judgements and foreclosures. It’s enough to drive someone over the edge. The fact is, people often misjudge situations and before you know it, they have a load of minimum payment facilities and no way of making it through the next month.

An Insolvency specialist is trained to limit damage, but sometimes the best solution is also the most straightforward – simply declare bankruptcy. Believe it or not, the right to a ‘fresh start’ following a bankruptcy is actually enshrined in the Insolvency Services’ Technical manual. Okay, if you’ve only got a few thousand outstanding there are probably better ways of dealing with it, but for those who have unmanageable debts, bankruptcy is almost certainly the best way forward.
debt linked depression

You might be surprised how many people tinker with the likes of IVAs and Debt management plans before taking the plunge, but these only serve to draw out the process by anything between 5 – 20 years. And during all of that time, your credit rating is ‘trashed’, you’re not worth a bean on the high street. Did you know that the average credit rating for someone who has been discharged from bankruptcy for just 18 months is 700 – 750 or ‘fair’?

Fear and pride are often the two things that stop us from making the right decision. In many cases, people just don’t know the facts surrounding bankruptcy. We’ve recently posted ‘Bankruptcy Myths … the definitive Guide’ on this website which debunks most of the nonsense. Give us a call if you still aren’t sure, we’ll gladly give you half an hour of our time.

Feel free to call us with any other bankruptcy questions or for bankruptcy help on 01425 600129.

Perhaps the best way to answer this question is to simply state the facts and let you be the judge. 

            Some interesting points about IVAs: 

  • IVAs are intended to protect assets that might otherwise be lost in bankruptcy e.g. properties, high value vehicles, etc. If you are living in rented and only own everyday items like TVs and fridges, there is no reason to be in an IVA.
  • You will be tied into the IVA for a minimum of 60 months, but if you are on a ‘low start’ IVA i.e. paying less than you should, you will be tied in for a minimum of six years. For example, if your debts totaled £20k when you entered the IVA you should be paying around £185pm
  • The set up costs for an IVA can run into thousands of pounds and this is where your monthly payment goes for the first two years of the IVA – to the IVA company to pay the set up costs. Not a penny goes to the creditors.
  • Thereafter, a trickle of money goes to the debt collectors that bought the debt. It is a myth that you are repaying the banks you borrowed from as it has already been sold on and written off.
  • IVAs have exactly the same effect on your credit rating as bankruptcy. In the eyes of the High Street, people in IVAs are bankrupt.
  • Your credit rating is zero for a minimum of 6yrs in an IVA, whereas those discharged from bankruptcy can now get a mortgage after 36 months (credit cards in half that time). Which begs the question: why struggle in an IVA for years on end when you can be in and out of a bankruptcy in just 12 months? 

 

        Some interesting points about Bankruptcy:

  • You no longer have to attend court. Everything is done online and over the phone. You can literally go bankrupt from the comfort of your armchair.
  • Nobody comes to your house to check what assets you have
  • Bailiffs, Debt Collectors and harassing phone calls are a thing of the past
  • You are only bankrupt for a maximum period of 12 months
  • You can keep cars up to the value of £1000 (but this is often stretched)
  • You can keep your bank account provided there is no debt or overdraft in place
  • Mortgaged properties are not lost in bankruptcy if there is no equity
  • Your name no longer appears in local newspapers
  • Around 85% of those switching from IVA to Bankruptcy have no monthly payment at all while the remaining 15% have a greatly reduced monthly payment.

Perhaps the most significant point when considering whether to leave an IVA is that your financial circumstances are reassessed. It is often the case that people’s financial positions have worsened since entering the IVA and this is recognised by the court. The end result is that there is often no monthly payment – or a greatly reduced one – following bankruptcy.

If you are considering bankruptcy, we will help you throughout the process and submit your application online. Court appearances for bankruptcy are no longer required. Feel free to call us for a chat or for bankruptcy help on 01425 600129.

 

 

 

My PPI claim has been sent to the Receiver … do I still have to make payment to the claims company acting on my behalf?

If you engaged a ‘no win no fee’ service to manage the process, then you would almost certainly have signed terms of business agreeing to pay their fees if successful. Money from PPI claims is a so-called ‘bankruptcy asset’ and correctly goes to the Official Receiver. This should have been pointed out by the claims company, but we’ll let you into a little secret .. they will claim their cut directly from the Official Receiver.

Feel free to call us on 01425 600129 with any other questions or for bankruptcy help. Questions may also be posted on our Home Page.

 

Before bankruptcy my wife and I both had properties and we used one of these to raise capital to fund a new business in 2007. We both signed an agreement. The business closed in 2011 and i was made bankrupt the same year. My wife was not made bankrupt and her name was not on the business. My question is has my interest in the 2nd property been removed by the receiver. How does this affect my wife as her name is still on the property and the property is in negative equity by some 60k.

Well, your half share has been taken over by the Receiver, which essentially means that your wife has a joint mortgage with the Official Receiver now and not you. The Official Receiver has 3 years in which to realise any claim against the property and would probably hope that your wife continues paying the mortgage and the property increases in value. If it is clear after 27 months that there is no equity in the house then the Official Receiver will withdraw his interest in the property. The big question is going to be what are you going to do with the property which you say is in negative equity. As you may be throwing good money after bad just to hold onto a mortgage.

Call us on 01425 600129 or 07479 739139 / 07894 481175 for bankruptcy help. Our advisers are not scripted and will explain everything in easy to understand terms.

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisici elit, sed eiusmod tempor incidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Idque Caesaris facere voluntate liceret: sese habere. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Fabio vel iudice vincam, sunt in culpa qui officia. Vivamus sagittis lacus vel augue laoreet rutrum faucibus.

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Pharetra Malesuada Cursus Euismod
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
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1. If my limited company closes will it affect my personal credit rating. 2. I only own 50% of the business, could I buy myself out of 50% of debt?

A limited company is a separate legal entity to an individual and debts registered against the company do not reflect on the Directors’ credit ratings, nor are they personally responsible for the debts. The exception to this is where Personal Guarantees are signed with a bank – if the debts are defaulted on, the individual is personally liable and it will definitely affect their credit rating. Regarding the second question, this depends on whether you signed Personal Guarantees or not. If not, you do not personally owe anything to anyone.

Call us for a informal chat about your circumstances or for bankruptcy help on 0800 5977 977 or 01425 600129.

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Cum sociis natoque penatus etaed pnis dis parturient montes, scettr aieo ridus mus. Etiam portaem mleyo.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisici elit, sed eiusmod tempor incidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Idque Caesaris facere voluntate liceret: sese habere. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Fabio vel iudice vincam, sunt in culpa qui officia. Vivamus sagittis lacus vel augue laoreet rutrum faucibus.

Nihilne te nocturnum praesidium Palati, nihil urbis vigiliae. Non equidem invideo, miror magis posuere velit aliquet. Qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. Prima luce, cum quibus mons aliud consensu ab eo. Petierunt uti sibi concilium totius Galliae in diem certam indicere.

Pharetra Malesuada Cursus Euismod
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisici elit, sed eiusmod tempor incidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Idque Caesaris facere voluntate liceret: sese habere. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Fabio vel iudice vincam, sunt in culpa qui officia. Vivamus sagittis lacus vel augue laoreet rutrum faucibus.

Nihilne te nocturnum praesidium Palati, nihil urbis vigiliae. Non equidem invideo, miror magis posuere velit aliquet. Qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. Prima luce, cum quibus mons aliud consensu ab eo. Petierunt uti sibi concilium totius Galliae in diem certam indicere.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisici elit, sed eiusmod tempor incidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Idque Caesaris facere voluntate liceret: sese habere. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Fabio vel iudice vincam, sunt in culpa qui officia. Vivamus sagittis lacus vel augue laoreet rutrum faucibus.

Nihilne te nocturnum praesidium Palati, nihil urbis vigiliae. Non equidem invideo, miror magis posuere velit aliquet. Qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. Prima luce, cum quibus mons aliud consensu ab eo. Petierunt uti sibi concilium totius Galliae in diem certam indicere.

Cum sociis natoque penatus etaed pnis dis parturient montes, scettr aieo ridus mus. Etiam portaem mleyo.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisici elit, sed eiusmod tempor incidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Idque Caesaris facere voluntate liceret: sese habere. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Fabio vel iudice vincam, sunt in culpa qui officia. Vivamus sagittis lacus vel augue laoreet rutrum faucibus.

Nihilne te nocturnum praesidium Palati, nihil urbis vigiliae. Non equidem invideo, miror magis posuere velit aliquet. Qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. Prima luce, cum quibus mons aliud consensu ab eo. Petierunt uti sibi concilium totius Galliae in diem certam indicere.

Pharetra Malesuada Cursus Euismod
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean
Ipsum Portalion Elitesimo Aenean

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisici elit, sed eiusmod tempor incidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Idque Caesaris facere voluntate liceret: sese habere. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Magna pars studiorum, prodita quaerimus. Fabio vel iudice vincam, sunt in culpa qui officia. Vivamus sagittis lacus vel augue laoreet rutrum faucibus.

Nihilne te nocturnum praesidium Palati, nihil urbis vigiliae. Non equidem invideo, miror magis posuere velit aliquet. Qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur. Prima luce, cum quibus mons aliud consensu ab eo. Petierunt uti sibi concilium totius Galliae in diem certam indicere.

 

 

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