Meeting with a Trustee about Financial Problems

A Comprehensive Guide to Discussing Financial Difficulties with a Trustee

Experiencing financial hardship is not an easy situation to be in. However, meeting with a trustee about your financial problems can provide a way out. This comprehensive guide will help you navigate the process effectively.

1. Preparing for the Meeting

1.1 Gathering Essential Documents

Before your meeting, ensure you have all the necessary documents. These include:


  • A detailed list of your liabilities and assets;
  • Recent pay slips;
  • Monthly income and expense reports;
  • Account statements;
  • Any recent appraisals of your property.

All this information is crucial for the trustee to evaluate your financial situation accurately.

1.2 Valuing Your Assets

If you possess assets like a car, motorcycle, or sled, the trustee will likely have a method to place a value on these assets. A common tool used is the Black Book1. If you have had your home appraised recently, ensure to bring this information as well.

2. Being Transparent about Past Events

When discussing past events that have contributed to your current financial situation, honesty is paramount. You might discover that some issues you were worried about aren’t relevant in finding a debt solution. Therefore, transparency with your trustee is essential.


“A Trustee is the best source of information to determine how past events will affect the options available to you.” – Anonymous Financial Expert


3. Deciding Between Bankruptcy and Consumer Proposal

If your financial situation necessitates the filing of bankruptcy or a consumer proposal, it’s crucial to understand the implications of both. Sometimes, where a transaction could cause problems in a bankruptcy, you might opt for a consumer proposal instead. Your trustee can guide you on the best course of action based on your individual circumstances.

4. The “Statement of Affairs”

Upon deciding to proceed with bankruptcy or consumer proposal, you’ll need to prepare a “Statement of Affairs.” This document provides a thorough snapshot of your current financial situation, including:


  • Current assets and liabilities;
  • Personal information (like occupation);
  • Disposition of assets within the previous five years;
  • The cause of your financial difficulty.


You’re required to sign this document, acknowledging that the information provided is true to the best of your knowledge.

5. The Importance of Honesty

Honesty is the best policy when it comes to discussing your financial problems with a trustee. Being forthright from the start not only facilitates the process but also ensures you receive the best advice tailored to your situation.

6. Conclusion

Meeting with a trustee about financial problems can seem daunting, but with the right preparation and a commitment to transparency, you can navigate the process smoothly. Always remember, the aim is to find the best solution to your debt problem, and your trustee is there to guide you through it.

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