Judgements, Liens and Garnishments in Canada
How Do Judgements, Liens and Garnishments Work?
If you’re in a tricky financial situation, it’s essential to understand your rights.
This guide will provide a detailed overview of judgements, liens and garnishments in Canada.
It’s understandable to be worried or anxious if there is a judgement against you, or you run the risk of having your wages garnished.
Although money troubles can be stressful, there are solutions out there.
It’s crucial to recognise that you are not on your own and there is a way out, even if you’re faced with judgements, liens and garnishments.
What happens if a creditor has a judgement against you?
You might assume that if a creditor gets a judgement against you, there’s a risk of losing everything.
In reality, this is highly unlikely.
If you are in a situation where you have outstanding debts that you cannot pay off, there are options on the table.
If you file a consumer proposal, or you’re considering bankruptcy, for example, creditors cannot legally pursue new actions, and they will also be forced to comply with a stay of proceedings.
If a creditor has already initiated actions against you, for example, they have started taking money from your wages through wage garnishment, filing a consumer proposal or applying for bankruptcy will put a stop to these actions.
Once the proposal has been accepted, your employer will be notified and instructed not to forward any more money to your creditors.
Completed consumer proposals and bankruptcies eliminate all seizures, liens and wage garnishments.
There is one notable exception and that is a lien against a property you own when you owe the CRA (Canadian Revenue Agency).
In this case, the lien cannot be removed via a consumer proposal or bankruptcy.
If the CRA has not already filed a lien, and you owe money, your tax debts can be incorporated within the proposal or bankruptcy.
This will prevent the CRA from taking further action.
How can I find help?
If you have been contacted by creditors, or you’re worried about the prospect of wage garnishment or a judgement against you, we strongly recommend seeking expert advice.
Working with an experienced trustee can help you identify the best course of action and reduce stress related to your finances.
Studies show that over 40% of Canadians are worried that they will never be debt-free.
It can seem very unlikely if you’re stuck in a hole that seems to be getting deeper by the day, but it is possible to recover and start rebuilding.
In cases where individuals have outstanding debts that they have no means of covering, it is beneficial to explore options such as a consumer proposal or bankruptcy.
As well as helping to make debts more manageable, reaching out can also stop creditors from taking action.
It is critical for people who are in debt to understand that they have rights and that there is always a way out.
If you’re anxious about losing your earnings, or you have a judgement against you, don’t hesitate to get in touch and talk to our friendly team.