The Insolvency Service Logo

Link to Site Search

Home | Do It Online |About Us | Our Offices | Publications | Forms | Contact Us | FAQ | Links

This is The Insolvency Service publication scheme under Section 19 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 


1)      Introduction     

2)      Model Publication Scheme

3)      Freedom of Information and Data Protection

4)      How to access published information

5)      How to access unpublished information

6)      Copyright

7)      Environmental Information Regulations

8)      Classes of information

9)      Complaints 

1) Introduction 

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) requires all public authorities to publish and maintain a Publication Scheme approved by the Information Commissioner and that complies with Section 19 of the FOIA. 

The public authority has a duty to set out in its Publication Scheme what information it routinely publishes and how it is made available to the public. In this scheme an authority must set out: 

  • The type of Publication Scheme that is operated; 

  • The classes and categories of information available; 

  • How the public can obtain printed copies of information and any charge for those copies; 

  • How the public can request information not included in the Publication Scheme; and 

  • How to complain if you are not satisfied with the scheme contents or how a request has been handled. 

2) Model Publication Scheme 

The Insolvency Service uses the Model Publication Scheme for Central Government as developed by the Information Commissioners Office (ICO). Full details of the ICO scheme for Central Government may be found on the ICO web site by clicking HERE.

A paper copy of The Insolvency Service Publication Scheme is available by downloading and printing this Word file or by request to Technical Section at the contact details in section 9) below.

3) Freedom of Information and Data Protection 

There are two principle Acts that provide statutory rights for individuals wanting to request information from The Insolvency Service. 

  • Freedom of Information Act 2000 – this Act gives a general right of access to recorded information held by public authorities, including The Insolvency Service. The Act allows any person (subject to certain exemptions) to obtain details of recorded information that is held by the public authority. You can find out more about your rights under the Act by visiting the web site of the Information Commissioners Office at 

  • Data Protection Act 1998 – this Act gives a general right for individuals to obtain copies of personal information that a public authority holds about them. An individual is entitled (subject to certain exemptions) to be told by the data controller what personal information is held, is being processed, the purpose of the processing and to whom the data has or may be disclosed. Requesting copies of your personal data under the Act is done by means of a subject access request. We provide full details of making a subject access request within our Publication Scheme. You can find out more about your rights under the Act by visiting the web site of the Information Commissioners Office at 

4) How to access published information 

The Insolvency Service makes all information published under our Publication Scheme available free of charge via our web site. Some items, such as leaflets and guidance booklets are also available in hard copy from The Insolvency Service by request via our web site or at any official receiver’s office. Many CAB offices and other voluntary sector providers may also have available many of our leaflets and booklets. 

The Insolvency Service annual report is published as part of our Publication Scheme and is also available to purchase from The Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI). 

Publications are available to order from the Publications Orderline or from Official Receivers Offices or from the specified telephone numbers. 

By telephone: 0845 015 0010 

By email: 

By fax: 0845 015 0020

Minicom users should telephone 0845 015 0030 

The Insolvency Service policy at present is not to charge for information published under the scheme, and where the cost of complying does not exceed the cost limit (currently £600 for Central Government).This policy is under regular review. 

Note: The Insolvency Service have set an order limit of 200 copies on each publication to enable us to ensure that the most recent versions are available. If you require more copies please email 

Some documents are available in other languages, including Welsh. You can access a list of these publications and languages from our web site HERE

Leaflets and booklets on our web site are available either in HTML, PDF or MP3 format and each publication has a unique reference number (URN) that should be quoted when placing an order for paper copies. 

5) How to access unpublished information 

The FOIA provides the right to access unpublished information that is held by a public authority (subject to certain exemptions).  

Unpublished information is recorded information that is not routinely published, is difficult to access or is archived information. 

The Act states that a person making a request for information is entitled: 

  • To be informed in writing whether the information requested is held, and 

  • if that is the case, to be provided with that information. 

The Insolvency Service publishes as part of this scheme a set of ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ which can be viewed HERE

If a particular question is not covered you will be able to submit your query by email via an on-line form available on our FAQ page. 

You should note the following points before submitting your query: 

  • The information you want may already be available under this Publication Scheme, or via our web site or by searching our public register of individual insolvencies.

  • The FOIA contains a number of exemptions which prevent The Insolvency Service from disclosing some requested information. 

  • We may charge a fee for processing requests we are not obliged to comply with and where the costs of complying exceed the cost limit (currently £600 for Central Government). 

  • The processing (including disclosure) of personal data ie information relating to a living individual who can be identified from that data falls under the provisions of the Data Protection Act (DPA). The Insolvency Service will not be able to release information concerning another living individual if it breaches the provisions of the DPA. 

6) Copyright 

All Insolvency Service published material is subject to Crown copyright, administered by the Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI). If you wish to re-use or reproduce any document for commercial, educational or any other purpose, you must apply to the OPSI for a copyright licence. For guidance notes on Crown copyright issues visit the Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI) web site HERE  

7) Environmental Information Regulations 

The Environmental Information Regulations 2004 provide the right of access to environmental information held by a public authority. A request under the Regulations may be verbal or in writing and further details of the scope of Regulations may be found on the web site of the Information Commissioner HERE

To make a request for environmental information under the Regulations please contact Property Services Procurement Section by email to, by writing to PSP, 21 Bloomsbury Street, London WC1B 3QW, or by telephone 020 7291 6756

8) Classes of information 

The Insolvency Service scheme publishes information under seven class headings that cover all of the information that we hold. Under each of the seven high level headings are a number of information categories. For each information category are listed titles and descriptions of information we hold, and links to information pages and documents forming part of our Publication Scheme. 

The scheme also sets out the circumstances where The Insolvency Service is not required to make information routinely available. These are when: 

  • The information is not held; 

  • The information is exempt from disclosure, for instance personal data, confidential or commercial information; or 

  • The information is not easily accessible. 

The seven data classes are shown in the table below: 

1) Who we are and what we do


Provides organisational information about The Insolvency Service, its structure, business locations and contacts.


2) What we spend and how we spend it


Financial information about projected and actual income and expenditure, procurement, contracts and audits for the current and previous two years.


3) Our priorities and how these are being achieved


Including any strategies, plans and performance indicators, audits, inspections and reviews of our business activities.


4) How we make decisions


Our decision-making processes and records for the current and previous two years.


5) Our Policies and procedures


Our written protocols, policies and procedures covering the services we provide and responsibilities we hold.


6) Lists and Registers


Details of public registers, asset and information registers, and register of financial interest.


7) The services we offer


Information about support services provided by The Insolvency Service including leaflets, enquiry lines and other help and information available.



9) Complaints 

If you have a complaint about the information within this Publication Scheme, to report broken links or about information that is part of this scheme which is not available please contact  

The Freedom of Information and Data Protection Liaison Officer

Technical Section

21 Bloomsbury Street

London WC1B 3QW 

Telephone: 0207 291 6776

Fax: 0207 291 6892


If you are dissatisfied about the way The Insolvency Service has handled a request for information you should initially contact the person who responded to your request to see if the matter can be resolved. 

If you remain dissatisfied, details of how to make a formal complaint are provided in our leaflet ‘Complaints Procedure’ as part of this Publication Scheme, also available from any Insolvency Service office. 

If you wish to make a complaint to the Information Commissioner he may be contacted by writing to: ICO, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF. The Information Commissioner is not obliged to consider complaints until you have exhausted The Insolvency Service’s own complaints procedure. 

Details of the services of the Information Commissioner can be found at: