Minister for Justice and Equality Frances Fitzgerald has signed an order bringing into force most of the provisions of the Bankruptcy (Amendment) Act 2015, including the reduced bankruptcy term of one year.

As well as reducing the normal duration of bankruptcy from three years to one, the revised Act also reduces the normal duration of a Bankruptcy Payment Order from five years to three as well as several other provisions. 

Minister Fitzgerald, who brought the bill to cabinet early last month, said: "The Act is a significant reform of our bankruptcy laws and reflects a fundamental shift in attitudes towards indebtedness.

"Our legislation no longer punishes people who, in most cases, through no fault of their own find themselves with intractable debt."

The Dublin Mid West representative added: "However, bankruptcy is still not going to be an easy option. People seeking bankruptcy will have to co-operate in an open manner with the bankruptcy process, and hand over their income and assets towards repayment of their debts. 

"The new Act also further modernises our bankruptcy system: it will remove unnecessary costs and delays for debtors and creditors, free up court time and resources, and allow more efficient and effective bankruptcy administration."