Consumer Proposals in Nova Scotia
Representing a trend that’s taking place across the whole of the country, the number of delinquencies and unpaid loans in Nova Scotia is increasing.
With more people struggling to manage their debts, the need for formal debt solutions has risen accordingly.
Due to this, more local residents are considering filing for bankruptcy or submitting a consumer proposal.
While either of these options can be a suitable way to deal with unmanageable debt, it’s important to understand how each one works.
Filing consumer proposals in Nova Scotia is a big decision, so be sure to seek advice before you move forward.
When you work with advisors or trustees from a reputable organization, you can be confident that you’re getting accurate information and helpful advice.
What is a Consumer Proposal?
A consumer proposal is a form of insolvency that’s governed by the Bankruptcies and Insolvency Act.
Designed to help you minimize your debts and manage them more effectively, filing a consumer proposal in Nova Scotia can help you to reset your finances.
When your creditors agree to your proposal, your total outstanding debt can be significantly reduced.
This means you’ll pay back far less than what you currently owe.
As consumer proposals are handled by the Bankruptcy Court, you won’t need to make multiple payments to different creditors every month.
Instead, you’ll make one pre-agreed payment to the court, who will then distribute it to your creditors.
A consumer proposal can run for a maximum of five years but will stay on your credit file for a little longer.
Equifax Canada removes a consumer proposal from your file three years after the final payment has been made.
TransUnion Canada removes proposals three years after you make your final payment or six years after you sign the proposal (whichever date is soonest).
With the potential to substantially reduce the amount you need to pay back and simplify your repayments, filing a consumer proposal is an attractive way for debtors to overcome their financial problems.
What are the benefits of a Consumer Proposal?
In addition to reducing the total amount you owe, filing a consumer proposal means that interest will be suspended on your accounts.
With no interest being applied to your debts, they won’t continue to increase while the proposal is in force.
Furthermore, existing wage garnishments will cease, and collections activity must be suspended.
One of the major advantages of consumer proposals is the ability to retain ownership of your assets.
When you file for bankruptcy, your non-exempt assets are transferred to your licenced insolvency trustee (LIT) and may be sold to contribute towards the repayment of your debts.
With consumer proposals in Nova Scotia, however, you are permitted to keep your assets.
Another benefit associated with filing a consumer proposal is that your monthly repayments will remain the same throughout.
The income surplus rules that apply to bankruptcies don’t apply to consumer proposals in Nova Scotia, so you won’t need to worry about having to pay more than you’ve agreed.
Who can file Consumer Proposals in Nova Scotia?
To be eligible to file a consumer proposal, your total debts need to be less than $250,000 (excluding a mortgage on your home).
However, if you file a joint consumer proposal with your spouse, the limit is raised to $500,000.
Even if you’re eligible to file a consumer proposal in Nova Scotia, you won’t be able to do this alone.
Like bankruptcies, consumer proposals must be handled by a licensed insolvency trustee.
As a regulated professional, a licensed insolvency trustee has the knowledge, experience and requisite endorsements to navigate the potentially complex process.
There are various procedural requirements you’ll need to adhere to when filing a consumer proposal, such as informing your creditors within a specific time frame once you’ve submitted your proposal to the court.
However, you won’t need to do this alone.
In fact, your licensed insolvency trustee will communicate with your creditors and the court on your behalf.
Is a Consumer Proposal right for you?
Although a consumer proposal can be an effective way to deal with debt problems, it isn’t necessarily the right choice for everyone.
That’s why it’s important to seek independent advice before you take action.
By taking to a licensed insolvency trustee, for example, you can find out which debt solutions are available to you.
This will give you the information you need to make the right choice for your financial future.
Nova Scotians dealing with money problems can solve their financial difficulty through a bankruptcy or consumer proposal.
Filing bankruptcy is a popular way to clear overwhelming consumer debt, but consumer proposals are quickly gaining in popularity.
As a debt settlement agreement, a proposal allows you to eliminate a portion of your debts and cut your interest rate charges.
The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy governs all consumer proposals in Nova Scotia and the laws covering them.
When you make a proposal your creditors will have 45 days to vote on whether to accept or reject your proposed agreement.
If your proposal is accepted (99% of proposals are) you will stop making debt payments on your unsecured debts and will make the required proposal payments instead.
To find out more now, contact us at Bankruptcy Canada today at (877) 879-4770.