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Debt Help Services in Ontario: Three Things You Must Know Before You Do Anything

Isn’t it annoying when people tell us that we should plan for the unexpected?

How do you do that anyway – if the thing is unexpected, how can you plan for it?

What we can probably assume is that something unexpected has happened in your life and your finances are now ‘in trouble’. What to do?

1. Don’t Panic

It’s not the end of the world and these sorts of things are happening to tens of thousands of Canadians every day.

Maybe you have just been laid off, or your partner has become ill and can’t work, or…well any number of things really. The end result is that you can’t make ends meet. You may have even received a letter from a collection agency or your wages are being garnished.

A common reaction is to do a web search for ‘debt help’ and call someone. However, be very careful who you call.

‘Debt Help’ comes in many forms and you should research your options carefully. Not every service that says it can help is going to be the right solution for you.

2. Know Your Options

There are really four main paths you can take with your debt problem.

  1. Debt Consolidation
  2. Credit Counselling
  3. Personal Bankruptcy
  4. Consumer Proposal

The first two, debt consolidation and credit counselling, are offered by a number of companies and agencies across Canada.

If you approach these types of organizations there is a natural tendency for them to believe their solutions are suitable for you. They may not be.

The other two options – personal bankruptcy and Consumer Proposal – are very specific debt help solutions that can only be administered by Licensed Insolvency Trustees (LITs).

In fact, a Consumer Proposal can be a great way to reduce your debt load, establish a repayment plan that you can afford and achieve legal protection from your creditors. Debt consolidation and credit counselling cannot do this.

Contrary to popular opinion, a personal bankruptcy is not the end of the world either. It can be a very effective way to deal with an awkward financial situation that no other option can solve.

3. Talk to Someone Who Has Access to the Widest Range of Options

So long-story-short the only way you can be sure you are gaining access to all your available debt help options is to start your research by talking to a Licensed Insolvency Trustee (LIT).

LITs are the most qualified debt professionals in Canada. The license they carry from the Canadian government obliges them to provide you guidance toward the best solution for your specific situation.

They can also give you access to the widest range of debt help solutions (including debt consolidation and credit counselling) available in Canada.


So there you have it – three things – if you follow this advice you will find the best solution to your debt problem.

You can start your research right now by booking a free no-obligation consultation with one of our LITs.

You won’t be judged, we will listen carefully and together we can formulate a plan for your financial fresh start. Call us now and let’s start that conversation.

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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