What is the Role of a Bankruptcy Trustee in Canada?

Posted on 3 June 2021

Written by Graeme Hamilton

Ever wondered ‘what is the role of a bankruptcy trustee in Canada?’ Also known as a Licensed Insolvency Trustee, a bankruptcy trustee is the only professional in Canada able to file a consumer proposal or a bankruptcy. All bankruptcies and consumer proposals are ruled by the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act as laid out by the Canadian government. Bankruptcy trustees are practised in this legislation and debt advice, and are able to advise you on the most appropriate form of debt relief for your unique financial circumstances.

What is the role of a bankruptcy trustee?

A good Licensed Insolvency Trustee will work with you to establish your financial situation, and to understand any debt problems you may be experiencing. Based on their extensive knowledge of the various forms of debt relief on offer, they will advise you as to the best pathway to take. As the only professionals licensed by the Canadian government to administer both consumer proposals and bankruptcies, bankruptcy trustees truly are the go-to point of contact for debt help. The role of a bankruptcy trustee in Canada is primarily to assist with the following, as laid out by the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act:

Reviewing your debt

A bankruptcy trustee will discuss your financial circumstances in detail, and determine your debt and debt relief options. They will carry out a debt assessment, and help you to establish the best method of debt relief for you. Bankruptcy is not always the most appropriate form of debt relief for everyone – in many cases, a consumer proposal is a preferred alternative to bankruptcy.

Administering your debt relief pathway

Once you have decided on a form of debt relief, your bankruptcy trustee will review your paperwork, and work with you to sign the documentation. They will prepare the various bankruptcy forms, including your assessment certificate, monthly statement of income, and bankruptcy assignment.

Filing your consumer proposal or bankruptcy

Your bankruptcy trustee will officially file your consumer proposal or bankruptcy paperwork with the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy. This triggers the start of the official consumer proposal or bankruptcy process, and your legal protection from creditors automatically begins.

Working with your creditors

A bankruptcy trustee will protect you from your creditors and notify them of your consumer proposal or bankruptcy. A stay of proceedings will begin, and your trustee will negotiate on your proposal or settlement on your behalf. Learn more about the advantages of filing bankruptcy in Canada.

Driving your consumer proposal or bankruptcy

Your Licensed Insolvency Trustee will monitor any claims, collect payments for creditors, and help to sell any non-exempt assets in a bankruptcy. They will also assist you in attending the obligatory credit counselling sessions you may need to attend, as well as any other mandatory duties.

Discharging you from bankruptcy

Your bankruptcy trustee will – most importantly – place the application for your discharge from bankruptcy. Once you are discharged, you are cleared of your debts and can begin a fresh financial future. Find out more about life after bankruptcy.

How to find a bankruptcy trustee

At Spergel, unlike with other bankruptcy trustee firms, you will be assigned your very own trustee to see you through the entire debt relief process. They will work with you to determine the best form of debt relief for you, and then administer the process from the very beginning to the very end.

Accepting the fact you may need debt relief is a big step. By booking a free consultation with one of Spergel’s experienced bankruptcy trustees, we can walk you through your debt relief options from consumer proposals to bankruptcy. We have helped over one hundred thousand Canadians gain debt relief, and we will help you too.


Graeme Hamilton

Graeme Hamilton is a Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional with over 10 years’ experience as an LIT (Licensed Insolvency Trustee). He is also Spergel's resident expert on bankruptcy and debt relief in the Ontario region. Prior to establishing his career in the insolvency industry, Graeme lived in Cambodia doing volunteer work with NGO's.

Schedule a Free Consultation with Graeme Hamilton (or your local Spergel LIT) by:

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