When most people hear the words “Licensed Insolvency Trustee,” they automatically think of a person who handles bankruptcies. While this is true, a trustee actually does much more than just bankruptcies. They can provide help and a number of services to anyone struggling with debt.
To give you a better idea, here are five ways a licensed insolvency trustee can help you find a way out of your financial trouble:
#1: Offer free, unbiased advice.
Before you can file for bankruptcy, you must first meet with a trustee. This meeting is free. During your consultation, the trustee will go over your finances with you. He or she will look at the amount of debt you have, your income, family size, and assets. From there, the trustee will make recommendations on how to best handle your debt.
Keep in mind that the services provided by a trustee, including bankruptcy, consumer proposals, and credit counseling are not free. However, the first initial consultation with the trustee is free of charge.
#2: Answer your questions.
When you need debt help or are considering filing for bankruptcy, you probably have a lot of questions. A licensed insolvency trustee is the best source for answers to your questions. A trustee’s education, training and experience, as well as an ongoing professional education program, makes them experts in their field. This makes them highly knowledgeable and qualified to answer your questions.
#3: Protect you from your creditors.
There are only two proceedings in Manitoba that legally protect you from your creditors—bankruptcy and a consumer proposal. Both can only be prepared by licensed insolvency trustees.
When you file bankruptcy or a consumer proposal, your trustee will inform your creditors. By law, your unsecured creditors are no longer allowed to try and collect money from you. That means no phone calls, no letters, or any other collection attempts.
#4: Negotiate settlements on your behalf.
If you file a consumer proposal, your trustee negotiates with your creditors to settle your debts. This is not something you can (or would probably even want) to do on your own. A trustee will work with your creditors to help them agree to an amount you can afford to pay each month.
#5: Provide credit counseling.
In addition to preparing bankruptcies and consumer proposals, trustees also provide credit counseling. If you file bankruptcy, this counseling is required. During your counseling sessions, you will learn how to manage and budget your money and how to use credit wisely. Credit counseling is designed to help you avoid serious financial problems again in the future.
Whether you want to file for bankruptcy or you’re in debt and looking for a way out, a licensed insolvency trustee in Canada can help.