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Filing For Bankruptcy

Considering Filing for Bankruptcy? 4 Tips to Help You Find a Trustee

If you’re thinking about filing for bankruptcy – or simply trying to avoid having to do so – your first and best step is to reach out to a Licensed Insolvency Trustee.

Why would I want to contact a trustee?

Trustees are the only professionals regulated and authorized by the Canadian government to help you file a Consumer Proposal or bankruptcy.

But it’s not just insolvencies that trustees handle.

Trustees are qualified to help you with a full range of options, including credit counselling and debt consolidation, to name just a few.

In your initial, free consultation, a trustee will assess your current financial situation – or that of your business if this is a corporate filing.

You will receive detailed information about the pros and cons of each of the debt relief options available to you.

You’ll also get personalized advice from a qualified, credentialed, and seasoned expert as to which solution may be the best in your circumstances.

When should I contact a trustee?

The sooner you get help, the more options you may have available to you to resolve your debt.

This means bankruptcy does not have to be the inevitable – or only – option.

So don’t hesitate to reach out immediately.

And there’s no risk to you to do so.

That’s because all consultations with a trustee are private and confidential, and you won’t be pressured to make any rash or uninformed decision with respect to your debt.

How do I find a trustee?

Here are four tips on how to find a professional trustee.

1. Choose a trustee that’s listed on the Government of Canada’s website.

One of the major reasons that individuals and businesses experiencing financial distress seek the assistance of a trustee is that trustees are qualified and credentialed professionals.

The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy (OSB) grants a license to trustees to ensure that they have the knowledge and skills to help you.

You can either start your search on the Government of Canada’s Licensed Insolvency Trustee registry, or check to see whether the trustee you are interested in is listed there.

A bonus is that this registry will inform you as to whether a trustee has been subject to any disciplinary action by the OSB.

2. Make sure the trustee is located conveniently nearby.

Trustees are available across Canada, including in the remotest of locations.

And because you will need to see your trustee in person, you should find a trustee that is located close by, or at least easily accessible by you in terms of transportation.

This is particularly true if you are going to be filing for bankruptcy, since you’ll need to come in for mandatory counselling sessions as part of the process.

3. Do your due diligence.

You’ll want to do a little background research before you make contact with the trustees you are interested in.

Do they have a website?

If so, is it informative and professional? Does it inspire your confidence in their abilities and expertise?

Do they provide detailed information about bankruptcy and other debt relief processes that demonstrate their knowledge and motivation to help people like you get out of debt?

Do they have several years of experience helping Canadians with their financial problems?

Can you find any reviews or testimonials on their website or elsewhere from other debtors?

4. Go with your gut.

You’ll need to provide your trustee with comprehensive financial information so that they can help you to achieve the debt relief you are seeking.

This means speaking openly about your financial problems.

So just make sure you feel comfortable doing so with the trustee you select.

Ask questions about your trustee’s experience. Ask questions about the bankruptcy process or other debt relief options that are available to you.

Your trustee will explain all your options and the pros and cons of each. And they should do so in a non-judgmental fashion.

Be certain that you understand what your trustee is telling you, and that you are satisfied with their responses.

If you aren’t, then it might not be a good fit and you’ll want to start this process again with another trustee.

Find a Trustee Today

Whether you’re inquiring about filing for bankruptcy or just need some help making ends meet, contact us today. And remember, the sooner you seek help, the more options you’ll have available to you. It may be easier than you think to get started on the road to better financial health.

Photo credit: Arek Socha via Pixabay

John Adamson, Licensed Insolvency Trustee Ontario

John Adamson, CPA, CMA

John is a Licensed Insolvency Trustee (1994), a Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional (CIRP – 1994), and a Chartered Professional Accountant with a Certified Management Accounting designation (CPA, CMA – 1992). His experience includes more than 25 years of helping individuals, small businesses, their owners and even lenders, find solutions to their debt problems.

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