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Around 150,000 people are expected to enter into an individual voluntary agreement (IVA) or agree a personal insolvency in 2009, it has been forecast.

The number of Brits struggling with debt management will increase by 40 per cent in 2009, according to KPMG.

More than 150,000 people are expected to enter into an individual voluntary agreement (IVA) or another form of bankruptcy this year, the advisory firm predicts.

A large proportion of this increase is expected to be as a result of the introduction of Debt Relief Orders on April 6th, allowing consumers to write off debts of less than 15,000.

The number of insolvencies is also expected to increase as the year progresses and the recession starts to have more of an impact on individuals and families.

Year-on-year, this will reflect a rise of around 40 per cent, with the growth of unemployment predicted to be one of the main causes, claims Mark Sands, director of personal insolvency at KPMG.

He said: "Falling house prices, the general downturn and the associated increases in unemployment are starting to have an impact.

"Whilst consumers will fight to keep their jobs and their family homes, for those who lose both there is often little reason for someone with debts not to declare themselves bankrupt."

The forecast follows research from Prudential that indicated women are likely to earn far less than men for their pension in 2009.

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