HomeInsolvency practitionersAntecedent transactionsAsset tracing and recovery

The ability to effectively trace and recover assets is a high priority for insolvency practitioners. Our specialist insolvency team, often working in conjunction with our highly experienced litigation team, can assist with all aspects of insolvency recovery work. Our aim is always to maximize realisations from insolvent estates and do so in a timely and cost effective manner

Our expertise and experience in all forms of insolvency estates, puts us at the forefront of insolvency and asset recovery.

Our team at Francis Wilks & Jones is highly experienced at locating, identifying and recovering assets both in this country and abroad. We focus on taking a flexible approach and understand that each insolvency estate is different. As such, we work with insolvency practitioners to devise and implement suitable asset recovery solutions depending on the circumstances of each insolvency estate.

We understand that for insolvency practitioners, there is always a concern about the misappropriation of assets. We are a specialist insolvency team and we recognise the importance of acting at short notice and handling any complexity of asset tracing and recovery utilising insolvency procedures to maximise returns to creditors.

We utilise the full spectrum of insolvency powers available to

  • investigate;
  • locate;
  • preserve; and
  • recover assets

and the cases which we deal with will often involve elements of fraud, regulatory breaches and cross-border claims.

Cryptocurrency and non-tangible assets

Increasingly Insolvency Practitioners are dealing with estates that may have Cryptocurrency. Once an Insolvency Practitioner has established that a cryptoasset exists, steps should be taken to obtain all the information needed to access the wallets holding the cryptoasset.

In the absence of co-operation, Insolvency Practitioner should take steps to freeze any identified cryptoassets where there is a risk of dissipation.

For example,

  • where the Insolvency Practitioner knows that there is a cryptocurrency but the information necessary to access the asset has not been disclosed and is still held by a third party;
  • because cryptocurrencies are decentralised and held across the distributive ledger, there is no bank to receive service of the Freezing Order;
  • however, a freezing order can be served on cryptocurrency exchanges;
  • Cryptoassets can be held anywhere in the world  and therefore, a Worldwide Freezing Order may be required to protect the asset.

An Insolvency Practitioner must be proactive in taking steps to protect the insolvent estate’s asset. Failure to do so could lead to the cryptoasset being sold without an IPs knowledge.

If you have any questions regarding our asset tracing and recovery service that we provide to insolvency practitioners generally, do not hesitate to contact one of our dedicated insolvency experts for an informal discussion.

Working with FWJ is always a pleasure. They make us feel very comfortable when we’re uncertain as to the best way forward and provide us with the confidence to strike out and go about our job, knowing they have our back.

Brian Baker, Partner at Moore Kingston Smith & Partners

Key contacts

Maria Koureas-Jones

Maria Koureas-Jones


Stephen Downie

Stephen Downie


Tim Francis

Tim Francis


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