Hundreds contact new insolvency serviceMonday 29 April 2013 22.26
The new Insolvency Service of Ireland, which will administer debt arrangements for people in financial trouble, has received almost 100 calls a day in its first week.
Its director Lorcan O'Connor said it had also received requests for more information booklets from some libraries and MABS offices that had run out of them.
The new body will start accepting applications for debt arrangements by the end of June.
Figures obtained from ISI show it has processed around 200 emails and there have been 15,000 visits to its website.
The agency said that one third of inquiries were from potential personal insolvency practitioners.
Mr O'Connor said he was happy with the response and that regulations for personal insolvency practitioners would be published in the coming weeks.
He said he expects several hundred people to be licensed as practitioners.
The Minister for Justice has previously said that he expects 15-20,000 people would register with agency in its first year.
The body has a dedicated information line (076 106 4200) and its website is www.isi.gov.ie
Noeleen Blackwell of the Free Legal Advice Centres said the figures seem a bit low, but she said it was only the first week of the service.
Ms Blackwell said it is important that people contact the body to get information.
Several visits to the website were from people based overseas, including the UK, US and Europe.
While there are restrictions under the Act with regard to residency, certain people living abroad may be able to avail of the arrangements, provided they meet the eligibility criteria specified in the legislation.