Answer: Receiving an early discharge just means you are out of bankruptcy sooner than the usual 12 months. Your debts are now written off and you are starting out fresh.
This article may help as well:
Receiving An Early Discharge From Bankruptcy
Can I be discharged from bankruptcy before 12 months?
Can I be kept in bankruptcy longer than 12 months?
What do I do afterwards?
How can I get a notice or certificate to show my bankruptcy has been discharged?
Under the current rules/laws for bankruptcy, most people who are made bankrupt are discharged form their bankruptcy within 12 months or one (1) year.
So 12 months after they have been made bankrupt the bankrutpcy is over, discharged, done with, finished.
For those with property or their bankruptcies are more complex, they can still receive the discharge from bankruptcy within 12 months, but there may be some lingering aspects, such as a charge on a property, or property to be disposed of.
However for some people whose bankruptcies are fairly straight forward, such as there is no property involved, etc, they can be discharged from bankrutpcy before the usual 12 months and receive an early discharge.
Once a bankruptcy has been discharged it is over and you are no longer under the restrictions of being bankrupt, and you an begin your new financial life. So to receive this notice early, allows you to begin that new life earlier.
Now I cannot say all the conditions that must be met for someone to receive an early discharge as it can vary among bankruptcies, but it is possible to receive one.
Also, as to how early one may receive this, I cannot say, but have heard as soon as eight (8) months into the bankruptcy.
So you can be discharged from bankruptcy sooner than 12 months.
As for being kept bankrupt longer than 12 months, in most instances you would still be discharged after 12 months, but if the Reciver felt there had been a misuse of credit, fraud, etc, they can issue a BRO or Bankruptcy Restriction Order, keeping you under the restritions of bankruptcy longer than the usual 12 months and up to 15 years.
Your bankruptcy may be over or discharged, but you are still under its restrictions.
Once your bankruptcy has been discharged you should receive a notice of the discharge saying it is over. If the Receiver does not send you one, you can contact them to request one and/or also obtain one at the court where you were made bankrupt. The court can charge a fee for this notice and that fee is £60.
You would then want to send copies of the discharge notice to the credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and Call Credit, so they can update thier records related to the bankruptcy showing on your credit file.
This will help you in re-establishing yourself.