Professional Credit Counselling Services

In some cases, your personal Insolvency Trustee, with expertise in financial debt counselling, can simply coach you into changing your financial behavior. We act as your credit counsellor to show you how to take a few small steps on your own, without entering into a formal arrangement or filing a proceeding with the Bankruptcy Trustee.

We can help you re-work your personal budget; offer you advice and practical tactics on how to consolidate debt. We can show you how to contact your creditors yourself in order to try to make arrangements to lower payments and interest rates or set up an orderly payment of debt.

Filing a Consumer Proposal

A consumer proposal is a formal, legally binding process that is administered by a bankruptcy/insolvency trustee. In this process, the trustee will work with you providing expert consumer debt help to develop a “proposal”; an offer to pay creditors a percentage of what is owed to them.  Your local credit counsellor can also extend the time you have to pay off the debts.

The term of a consumer proposal cannot exceed five years and does not provide for any interest on the debts outstanding. Payments are made to the trustee, and the trustee uses the funds to distribute to each of your creditors in accordance to the proposal terms.

Once you have filed your proposal, actions against you by unsecured creditors, such as executions, wage garnishments, etc. are stayed or stopped.  For your proposal to be accepted by the creditors, you must obtain the majority of your creditors in dollar value voting in favor of the proposal.

More about Consumer Proposals >

Personal Bankruptcy

If you are unable to resolve your financial troubles through any combination of formal and informal steps, you may decide to consider personal bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is a formal procedure governed by the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act.

With bankruptcy, you assign your assets to an insolvency trustee, except exempt assets. The trustee will then sell or otherwise use them (e.g., transfer them) to pay back your creditors.

Depending on your level of income, you may have to make a monthly payment into your estate for a period of time ranging between 9 and 21 months. This, among many other details, will be explained to you once you meet with a Niagara bankruptcy trustee to discuss your options.

Once you have declared bankruptcy, actions against you by unsecured creditors, such as wage garnishments etc., are all stayed (or stopped).

More on Bankruptcy >

Informal Arrangements with Creditors

In some circumstances where there are a small number of creditors or a specific creditor you are trying to deal with, a trustee can help you prepare an informal proposal to your creditors. An informal proposal varies in terms of its scope dependent upon the amount owed and the number of creditors. The key difference between an informal proposal and a consumer proposal is that an informal proposal is not legally binding (its voluntary); it does not provide the immediate relief (stay) that a consumer proposal does, and it does not bind ALL the creditors, only those creditors who agree to it. Any creditor can continue to seek their legal remedies in the face of an informal proposal.