The Bankruptcy & Insolvency Act provides different debt restructuring options for Canadians, which includes both personal bankruptcies and consumer proposals. We’re seeing a steady trend where Canadians are increasingly using consumer proposals as a way to deal with their debt.
But once you know how to deal with your debts, how do you know who to turn to for help?
Licensed Insolvency Trustees
There are many people who will claim to be debt experts. It’s important to note that only a Licensed Insolvency Trustee (LIT) is licensed by the federal government. The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy issued a directive in December 2015, which was aimed to help Canadians easily recognize professionals licensed to provide services under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act.
That means anyone previously called bankruptcy trustees, or trustees in bankruptcy, are now referred to as a Licensed Insolvency Trustee.
It’s important to note that the services provided by these professionals stay the same. By removing the word bankruptcy from the title, it is more transparent to the fact that LITs can do so much more than handle your bankruptcy case.
What Does a Licensed Insolvency Trustee Do?
Licensed Insolvency Trustees provide a wide range of debt management solutions including consumer proposals and personal bankruptcies. Licensed Insolvency Trustees will never ask for money up front and will deal with your case directly.
- Initial consultations are free. You’ll review your debts and your financial situation with your LIT and together, you’ll come up with the best debt management solution based on your situation. It may be a consumer proposal, it may be bankruptcy, it may be a debt management plan. It’s the job of an LIT to point you in the best direction and ensure you’ve considered all options available.
- Your LIT will essentially act as a referee between you and your creditors. Read more about what a LIT is here.
- They will work with you to ensure you complete all of your duties as needed, and help you on your way to debt freedom.
When you’re looking for debt advice, it’s important to ask yourself if the person you’re speaking with is qualified to help you. Licensed Insolvency Trustees undergo training and education and, if they’re successful, they become licensed by the federal government.
Remember that only Licensed Insolvency Trustees can administer bankruptcies or consumer proposals in Canada.
Licensed Insolvency Trustees are also held accountable to a certain code of ethics. They will never ask for money upfront and will ensure that your best interests are placed first. Living with overwhelming debt can be difficult, and LITs are here to help ease that transition from indebted to debt-free.
If you’d like to speak with a Bankruptcy Canada professional about your debt issues, find the Licensed Insolvency Trustee closest to you.
My husband and I claimed joint bankruptcy in 2010, we have since sold out home and are renting. During this time we sadly became drug addicted, separated several times where I was on ODSP , he was paying minimal support but it was claimed. He was living at his parents where he paid no rent, and had an income sometimes. He hasn’t filed income tax in years(7 or 8) and is worried about court proceedings. He has a garnishment for an EI overpayment coming too which we were advised it would be at 30% of his income, this will basically leave us homeless ☹️ It isn’t my debt so I cannot claim bankruptcy as it would only be my second time but it would be his 3rd. How fast can a CRA garnishment be stopped and what is the best avenue to take? Please help. Thanks
Hi Jody. This is a complicated question, so you should consult with a licensed insolvency trustee for answers to your specific questions. In general, CRA is more likely to garnishee wages if tax returns have not been filed, so it may be prudent for your husband to file his outstanding taxes so that he can then make an arrangement with CRA to deal with his debt. If they start a garnishment, he could file a third bankruptcy, or more likely file a consumer proposal as a way to deal with the debt.