Section 78 in The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016
This Part shall apply to matters relating to fresh start, insolvency and bankruptcy of individuals and partnership firms where the amount of the default is not less than one thousand rupees:
Provided that the Central Government may, by notification, specify the minimum amount of default of higher value which shall not be more than one lakh rupees.
In this Part, unless the context otherwise requires,—
(1) “Adjudicating Authority” means the Debt Recovery Tribunal constituted under sub-section (1) of section 3 of the Recovery of Debts Due to Banks and Financial Institutions Act, 1993 (51 of 1993);
(2) “associate” of the debtor means—
(a) a person who belongs to the immediate family of the debtor;
(b) a person who is a relative of the debtor or a relative of the spouse of the debtor;
(c) a person who is in partnership with the debtor;
(d) a person who is a spouse or a relative of any person with whom the debtor is in partnership;
(e) a person who is employer of the debtor or employee of the debtor;
(f) a person who is a trustee of a trust in which the beneficiaries of the trust include a debtor, or the terms of the trust confer a power on the trustee which may be exercised for the benefit of the debtor; and
(g) a company, where the debtor or the debtor along with his associates, own more than fifty per cent. of the share capital of the company or control the appointment of the board of directors of the company.
Explanation.—For the purposes of this clause, “relative”, with reference to any person, means anyone who is related to another, if—
(i) they are members of a Hindu Undivided Family;
(ii) one person is related to the other in such manner as may be prescribed;
(3) “bankrupt” means—
(a) a debtor who has been adjudged as bankrupt by a bankruptcy order under section 126;
(b) each of the partners of a firm, where a bankruptcy order under section 126 has been made against a firm; or
(c) any person adjudged as an undischarged insolvent;
(4) “bankruptcy” means the state of being bankrupt;
(5) “bankruptcy debt”, in relation to a bankrupt, means—
(a) any debt owed by him as on the bankruptcy commencement date;
(b) any debt for which he may become liable after bankruptcy commencement date but before his discharge by reason of any transaction entered into before the bankruptcy commencement date; and
(c) any interest which is a part of the debt under section 171;
(6) “bankruptcy commencement date” means the date on which a bankruptcy order is passed by the Adjudicating Authority under section 126;
(7) “bankruptcy order” means an order passed by an Adjudicating Authority under section 126;
(8) “bankruptcy process” means a process against a debtor under Chapters IV and V of this Part;
(9) “bankruptcy trustee” means the insolvency professional appointed as a trustee for the estate of the bankrupt under section 125;
(10) “Chapter” means a chapter under this Part;
(11) “committee of creditors” means a committee constituted under section 134;
(12) “debtor” includes a judgment-debtor;
(13) “discharge order” means an order passed by the Adjudicating Authority discharging the debtor under sections 92, 119 and section 138, as the case may be;
(14) “excluded assets” for the purposes of this part includes—
(a) unencumbered tools, books, vehicles and other equipment as are necessary to the debtor or bankrupt for his personal use or for the purpose of his employment, business or vocation,
(b) unencumbered furniture, household equipment and provisions as are necessary for satisfying the basic domestic needs of the bankrupt and his immediate family;
(c) any unencumbered personal ornaments of such value, as may be prescribed, of the debtor or his immediate family which cannot be parted with, in accordance with religious usage;
(d) any unencumbered life insurance policy or pension plan taken in the name of debtor or his immediate family; and
(e) an unencumbered single dwelling unit owned by the debtor of such value as may be prescribed;
(15) “excluded debt” means—
(a) liability to pay fine imposed by a court or tribunal;
(b) liability to pay damages for negligence, nuisance or breach of a statutory, contractual or other legal obligation;
(c) liability to pay maintenance to any person under any law for the time being in force;
(d) liability in relation to a student loan; and
(e) any other debt as may be prescribed;
(16) “firm” means a body of individuals carrying on business in partnership whether or not registered under section 59 of the Indian Partnership Act, 1932 (9 of 1932);
(17) “immediate family” of the debtor means his spouse, dependent children and dependent parents;
(18) “partnership debt” means a debt for which all the partners in a firm are jointly liable;
(19) “qualifying debt” means amount due, which includes interest or any other sum due in respect of the amounts owed under any contract, by the debtor for a liquidated sum either immediately or at certain future time and does not include—
(a) an excluded debt;
(b) a debt to the extent it is secured; and
(c) any debt which has been incurred three months prior to the date of the application for fresh start process;
(20) “repayment plan” means a plan prepared by the debtor in consultation with the resolution professional under section 105 containing a proposal to the committee of creditors for restructuring of his debts or affairs;
(21) “resolution professional” means an insolvency professional appointed under this part as a resolution professional for conducting the fresh start process or insolvency resolution process;
(22) “undischarged bankrupt” means a bankrupt who has not received a discharge order under section 138.
Title: Eligibility for making an application.
(1) A debtor, who is unable to pay his debt and fulfils the conditions specified in sub-section (2), shall be entitled to make an application for a fresh start for discharge of his qualifying debt under this Chapter.
(2) A debtor may apply, either personally or through a resolution professional, for a fresh start under this Chapter in respect of his qualifying debts to the Adjudicating Authority if —
(a) the gross annual income of the debtor does not exceed sixty thousand rupees;
(b) the aggregate value of the assets of the debtor does not exceed twenty thousand rupees;
(c) the aggregate value of the qualifying debts does not exceed thirty-five thousand rupees;
(d) he is not an undischarged bankrupt;
(e) he does not own a dwelling unit, irrespective of whether it is encumbered or not;
(f) a fresh start process, insolvency resolution process or bankruptcy process is not subsisting against him; and
(g) no previous fresh start order under this Chapter has been made in relation to him in the preceding twelve months of the date of the application for fresh start.
Title: Application for fresh start order.
(1) When an application is filed under section 80 by a debtor, an interim-moratorium shall commence on the date of filing of said application in relation to all the debts and shall cease to have effect on the date of admission or rejection of such application, as the case may be.
(2) During the interim-moratorium period,—
(i) any legal action or legal proceeding pending in respect of any of his debts shall be deemed to have been stayed; and
(ii) no creditor shall initiate any legal action or proceedings in respect of such debt.
(3) The application under section 80 shall be in such form and manner and accompanied by such fee, as may be prescribed.
(4) The application under sub-section (3) shall contain the following information supported by an affidavit, namely:—
(a) a list of all debts owed by the debtor as on the date of the said application along with details relating to the amount of each debt, interest payable thereon and the names of the creditors to whom each debt is owed;
(b) the interest payable on the debts and the rate thereof stipulated in the contract;
(c) a list of security held in respect of any of the debts;
(d) the financial information of the debtor and his immediate family up to two years prior to the date of the application;
(e) the particulars of the debtor's personal details, as may be prescribed;
(f) the reasons for making the application;
(g) the particulars of any legal proceedings which, to the debtor's knowledge has been commenced against him;
(h) the confirmation that no previous fresh start order under this Chapter has been made in respect of the qualifying debts of the debtor in the preceding twelve months of the date of the application.
Title: Appointment of resolution professional.
(1) Where an application under section 80 is filed by the debtor through a resolution professional, the Adjudicating Authority shall direct the Board within seven days of the date of receipt of the application and shall seek confirmation from the Board that there are no disciplinary proceedings against the resolution professional who has submitted such application.
(2) The Board shall communicate to the Adjudicating Authority in writing either—
(a) confirmation of the appointment of the resolution professional who filed an application under sub-section (1); or
(b) rejection of the appointment of the resolution professional who filed an application under sub-section (1) and nominate a resolution professional suitable for the fresh start process.
(3) Where an application under section 80 is filed by the debtor himself and not through the resolution professional, the Adjudicating Authority shall direct the Board within seven days of the date of the receipt of an application to nominate a resolution professional for the fresh start process.
(4) The Board shall nominate a resolution professional within ten days of receiving the direction issued by the Adjudicating Authority under sub-section (3).
(5) The Adjudicating Authority shall by order appoint the resolution professional recommended or nominated by the Board under sub-section (2) or sub-section (4), as the case may be.
(6) A resolution professional appointed by the Adjudicating Authority under sub-section (5) shall be provided a copy of the application for fresh start.