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Are you in financial hot water in Nova Scotia? Are you having trouble making minimum payments? Are collectors calling on a regular basis? Are you feeling like you’ll never be able to get on top of your debt? Maybe declaring bankruptcy in Nova Scotia is the solution for you.
Click here to find out how you can stop collection harassment in Canada.
If your debts outweigh your assets and you owe at least $1,000 in unsecured debt, you have become legally insolvent and have the right to declare bankruptcy.
If you are considering this option, you’ve probably already done some research, but here are some commonly asked questions that might help you make your decision.
What is the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act? Find out here.
While bankruptcy isn’t for everyone, it can provide a fresh start for people in Nova Scotia who feel they have no other option. Once you start the process, it can provide protection against creditors who might be harassing you. It can stop wage garnishment and legal action against you.
When you choose to declare bankruptcy in Nova Scotia, your unsecured debts will be eliminated and you will have the chance to begin again, with a clean slate.
Unfortunately, there are drawbacks. You will see a negative, lasting impact on your credit score, so it will be difficult to obtain credit in the following years and you may lose assets that you have acquired.
Since there are serious benefits and drawbacks, you’ll want to consider all your options in Nova Scotia before going ahead with bankruptcy.
There are several alternatives to bankruptcy if you seek help early enough.
If you choose to submit a consumer proposal or declare bankruptcy, you will need to work with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee.
As in other provinces, Nova Scotia Bankruptcies are legal processes that go through the courts. If you are considering filing, you will need to enlist the help of an Insolvency Trustee. Also called Bankruptcy Trustees, Licensed Insolvency Trustees (LITs) are highly trained professionals, who must follow strict rules and a code of ethics. Their licenses and fees are regulated by the federal government.
LITs can provide you with credit counselling, help you sort through bankruptcy and its alternatives, and help you choose the solution that best fits your situation. They can also provide you with the best information about how to move forward after a bankruptcy, rebuild your credit score and use credit wisely. As an officer of the court, their job is to make the process as fair as possible for everyone involved.
When you go through bankruptcy in Nova Scotia, most unsecured debts will be eliminated. These may include:
In most cases, you will remain responsible for your secured debts such as mortgages and car loans, any outstanding child support or alimony payments, court fines, and government overpayments.
What else can and can’t be included when you file for bankruptcy? Click here to find out.
You will be responsible for student loan debt unless it has been seven years since you finished your studies. This includes part-time classes. You may be eligible for a hardship provision after five years have passed so it is worth discussing with your bankruptcy trustee in Nova Scotia.
There will be some administration fees for your bankruptcy to provide compensation to your creditors and to your Licensed Insolvency Trustee. These are set by the federal government.
Each month, you will need to provide your LIT in Nova Scotia with information about your financial situation, including income and expenses. If you make more money than expected, you may be required to pay more toward your bankruptcy.
Don’t get your hopes up if you are expecting an income tax refund. Unfortunately, in most cases, you will need to surrender it as part of your insolvency proceedings.
Look here to find out more about the costs of declaring bankruptcy.
Personal insolvency is governed by a Federal Act, called the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, but specific information about what assets you can keep varies by province. In Nova Scotia, bankruptcy exemptions include, but are not limited to the following:
Your LIT will clearly explain which assets you will need to surrender and which ones you will keep, depending on your individual circumstances.
Usually, your bankruptcy won’t affect your spouse, just because you are married. There are some cases though, where your spouse may be responsible for a debt:
We all like to help people we are close to, but this is an area where we need to be cautious. If you have asked a friend or family member to co-sign a loan for you, that person will become responsible for the loan payments after you file for bankruptcy. Likewise, if you have co-signed for someone who has declared insolvency, making the payments will now be up to you. Either way, the co-signer should request a meeting with the Licensed Insolvency Trustee handling the case.
What happens when your co-signer declares bankruptcy? Read this to find out.
Under normal circumstances in Nova Scotia, a bankruptcy discharge will happen in about 9 months. If you have surplus income or if you have filed for bankruptcy more than once, it could take longer. You’ll want to discuss your individual situation with your LIT to find out your personal date of discharge.
Although it can be a tough route to take, bankruptcy isn’t the end of the world. If you are willing to work hard, spend wisely and save diligently, you can get back on track after your bankruptcy is discharged.
If you’re currently thinking about filing for bankruptcy in Nova Scotia and are interested in seeking the help of a professional, you’ve come to the right place.
Looking for a Licensed Insolvency Trustees? Find out how to find one and how can they help.
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