How Do I Find a Trustee?

  • By Jillian Taylor-Mancusi

When you have money problems you can’t solve on your own, deciding to seek professional help makes good sense. Licensed Insolvency Trustees (LIT) have many tools at their disposal and can help you work through your debt crisis. If you’d like more information about bankruptcy, a trustee is a good place to start, but where can you find a trustee?

About Bankruptcy and Licensed Insolvency Trustees

The law requires bankrupt individuals to be represented and assisted by a licensed insolvency trustee. Beginning with counseling and ending with discharge, the whole process is administered by your LIT. LITs are also needed if you plan on making a consumer proposal.

Although the laws regarding bankruptcy are defined by federal law, each province determines their own exemptions. Exemptions are the things you get to keep when you go bankrupt. Because the exemptions vary so widely, you need to find a trustee that practices locally.

Choosing a Licensed Insolvency Trustee

Because you will be working closely with your trustee for at least nine months if you are filing for bankruptcy, or up to 5 years if you are making a consumer proposal, be sure you feel comfortable with the trustee you choose. Your first consultation can help you decide if you have found the right trustee for you or if you should continue your search.

It’s also helpful to find a trustee that is close to home. You will be required to meet with your trustee for two counseling sessions and there may be other times you should meet with the trustee. A trustee with an office close to home makes it convenient to visit the office when the need arises.

Locating a Licensed Insolvency Trustee

Licensed insolvency trustees may be part of a partnership or practice alone. They all are listed on a registry maintained by the government. You can search the registry online at Industry Canada’s website. The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy (OSB) maintains two lists–one is the Trustee Registry and the other is a list of trustees licensed by the OSB.

The Trustee Registry provides the names of trustees, their addresses, and other necessary contact information. You can search the registry using the name of the trustee, whether they practice individually or with a firm, or by province or territory. The list of trustees licensed by the OSB is a simple list that can be searched by province or territory. Also, if you have friends or family who have been bankrupt, you can ask them for a recommendation.

Finding a Trustee When You Can’t Afford One

The Bankruptcy Assistance Program (BAP) was set up to help Canadians who need the services of a trustee but can’t afford one. If you need help, you should contact the OSB, and they will provide you with a list of trustees who participate in the BAP program. You can then contact the trustees and set up a consultation.

The trustees at LCTaylor have been in practice for over thirty years and have helped many Canadians get their overwhelming debt under control. With offices in Kenora and Winnipeg, it’s convenient to meet with your trustee to help you work through your financial difficulties. Initial consultations are free and you will have the opportunity to ask some important questions and get to know that trustee you will be working with. If you are outside the Kenora or Winnipeg areas, you can use the OSB’s trustee register to find a trustee that you will meet your needs. The most important action you can take is getting started. The sooner you address your debt, the more debt relief options your trustee will be able to provide.

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