This article examines the remission of debt in personal bankruptcy proceedings. Despite the amendment of the bankruptcy law to establish a relatively effective procedure the remission of debt is still controversial. Yet effective procedures of debt relief remain essential if three million households in Germany currently suffering over-indebtedness are to free themselves from economic and social exclusion. This article not only comments on current developments in a socio-legal perspective, but also proposes the implementation of supplemental preventive measures beyond legal action that enables the normative integration of the procedure into the life worlds of the affected persons. These measures are supposed to reduce individual impropriety and to improve consumer protection. This may also indicate a way to contain the economic damage caused by personal bankruptcies. When these measures operate, they will also change the public perception of personal bankruptcy towards an acceptance of economic failure as a ubiquitous modern risk. In turn, this could legimitate and stabilize effective legal debt relief procedures.