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Get Expert Help in Times of Financial Duress

Our analysis of the financial impacts of Canadian inflation highlighted all too clearly the growing role of debt for many Canadians. For Canadians grappling with overwhelming debt, understanding the path to financial recovery is crucial. A Licensed Insolvency Trustee can play an important role in this process, offering professional services designed to help individuals and businesses address insolvency issues. Let’s dive into the role and value of a Licensed Insolvency Trustee, providing guidance on when their services are most appropriate, how to evaluate their qualifications, the costs involved, and where to find one.

What is a Licensed Insolvency Trustee?

A Licensed Insolvency Trustee is a federally regulated professional authorized to administer insolvency processes, including bankruptcies and consumer proposals. There are several steps required for a person to become a Licensed Insolvency Trustee:

  • Aspiring trustees must enroll in and complete the Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional (CIRP) Qualification Program. The program is offered by the Canadian Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Professionals (CAIRP)
  • After completing the CQP, candidates must pass the National Insolvency Exam
  • The final step in the qualification process is the Oral Board Examination conducted by the OSB. This exam assesses the candidate’s practical skills and judgment in insolvency matters.
  • After successfully completing all the above steps, candidates can apply for a trustee licence through the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy.

What Services Does a Licensed Insolvency Trustee Provide?

A Licensed Insolvency Trustee can help in the following areas:

  • Assessing Financial Situations: A licensed Insolvency Trustee provides a comprehensive assessment of your financial situation to determine the best course of action.
  • Administering Bankruptcies: They guide individuals through the bankruptcy process, ensuring legal compliance and fair treatment of all parties.
  • Facilitating Consumer Proposals: Licensed Insolvency Trustees help prepare and present consumer proposals to creditors, offering an alternative to bankruptcy.
  • Debt Counseling: Trustees also provide financial counselling to help individuals understand and manage their finances better post-insolvency.

Deciding If an Insolvency Trustee is Right for You

Consulting with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee is advisable under several circumstances, including:

  • Inability to Pay Debts as They Come Due: If you cannot meet your financial obligations, a Licensed Insolvency Trustee can offer solutions.
  • You’re Overwhelmed by Debt: Those who cannot see a way out of their debt through regular payments might benefit from bankruptcy or a consumer proposal.
  • You are Seeking Legal Debt Relief Solutions: If you’re considering legal options for debt relief, only a Licensed Insolvency Trustee can administer these processes in Canada.

If, on the other hand, you’re concerned with debt but simply need help managing your finances to better balance your spending and saving, you should consider how a financial advisor can help with debt.

Evaluating a Licensed Insolvency Trustee

When seeking the services of a Licensed Insolvency Trustee, ensure they are licensed by the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy (OSB) in Canada. Look for professionals with a strong track record of helping individuals navigate insolvency, and consider their approach to client communication and support.

Costs You Can Expect to Pay a Licensed Insolvency Trustee

The fees for a Licensed Insolvency Trustee vary based on the complexity of your situation and the services provided. Generally, these costs are regulated by the OSB, ensuring they are fair and transparent. Fees are often included in the debt repayment plan, such as in the case of a consumer proposal.

How to Find a Licensed Insolvency Trustee in Canada

Finding a Licensed Insolvency Trustee in Canada is straightforward. The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy maintains a directory of licensed professionals


A Licensed Insolvency Trustee can help Canadians facing serious financial difficulties. Their expertise in navigating the legal insolvency process can provide a pathway to financial stability and recovery. Whether you’re considering bankruptcy or a consumer proposal, a Licensed Insolvency Trustee can offer the guidance and support needed to make informed decisions about your financial future. Often the first step towards resolving financial challenges is seeking professional advice, and a Licensed Insolvency Trustee is well-equipped to guide you through this process.

Additional Tools and Resources to Help With Debt Management

Our recent report on The Financial Impacts of Canadian Inflation highlighted the many ways inflation is impacting our financial lives. We explored the topic of household debt, and found that 17% of over 1,200 respondents had taken on more debt as a result of inflation, while 12.1% had slowed or deferred debt repayments. If debt has become a source of stress for you, you’re not alone! Dive deeper into our survey findings to learn how Canadians are increasingly focused on debt reduction. For practical advice, read our Debt Management Tips for Canadians. And if you like to get hands-on using calculators, we’ve built tools to help you plan a budget, build an emergency fundcalculate your net worth, or explore the costs of a loan.

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