Do You Have a Question?
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS NOT ANSWERED BELOW, PLEASE GET IN TOUCH WITH US:
Toll Free: 1.877.241.6018
We will attempt to answer any questions or concerns you might have.
WHAT IS A CONSUMER PROPOSAL?
A consumer proposal is a tool we use to help you get back on track and stop all the stressful calls and letters from creditors. With a consumer proposal, Fontaine & Associates helps you by negotiating a settlement with your creditors – where you would only repay a portion of the debt. This is a very attractive alternative to avoid having to file for bankruptcy. We take care of all the heavy lifting for you including dealing with your creditors for you. When it comes to paying your reduced debt, you only have to make a single monthly payment to Fontaine & Associates and we will distribute these funds to your creditors. The amount of your monthly payment is largely based on your ability to pay following a detailed review of your monthly income and living expenses. You do not have to pay the debt in full. This can be a very productive solution for helping people get back on track. Once we have our free consultation, with no obligations, we’ll know if this is the best option for you.
WHAT ARE THE BASIC CONDITIONS FOR A SUCCESSFUL CONSUMER PROPOSAL?
We will sit down with you during our free consultation and look at your income to ensure you have some surplus income in your budget to allow for a single monthly payment -- and that your family income is stable. The payments are then divided among your creditors. We will take care of all of those details for you and make this a very simple and easy to understand process. We deal with your creditors for you and once we get involved, all the stressful collection letters and phone calls stop. When it comes to payment, you only have to make a single monthly payment to Fontaine & Associates and we will distribute these funds to your creditors.
HOW WILL A CONSUMER PROPOSAL AFFECT MY CREDIT RATING?
A consumer proposal has less of an impact on a credit rating compared with declaring bankruptcy. Your credit rating is made up of several factors including job and residence stability, marital status and income. If we file a proposal on your behalf, the credit bureau will keep a record of your consumer proposal for the duration of the consumer proposal plus a 3-year period after you have met the terms of the proposal. It does not mean you will not be able to borrow while your credit rating is affected. We can quickly determine if this is the best option for you.
WHAT IS BANKRUPTCY?
For tens of thousands of Canadians each year, bankruptcy is the solution to helping them deal with unmanageable debt and the first step toward getting back on track. Bankruptcy is a legal process that helps someone to eliminate excessive debt. Bankruptcies are governed by the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, administered by Licensed Insolvency Trustees and supervised by the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy, a federal agency. At Fontaine & Associates, we are licensed Licensed Insolvency Trustees and have been helping people with this process for over 30 years. We pride ourselves on making this a positive and progressive process that can truly help you get back on track and get your life back.
HOW DOES BANKRUPTCY AFFECT MY CREDIT RATING?
Bankruptcy will affect your credit rating. However, it is important to remember that for many people, this is a viable and positive solution towards getting their financial lives on track. In fact, over the past several years, on average, approximately 80,000 Canadians file for personal bankruptcy every year. Your credit rating is made up of several factors including job, residence stability, marital status and income. For people declaring bankruptcy for the first time, credit-reporting agencies such as Equifax (Credit Bureau) will keep a record of your bankruptcy for a 7-year period (approximately). That does not mean you will not be able to borrow during that 7-year period. For all the details, contact us and we’ll lead you through the process. At Fontaine & Associates, we have over 30 years experience helping people in this area.
HOW DOES BANKRUPTCY AFFECT YOUR ASSETS?
This is a question we get a lot and people are pleasantly surprised to find out bankruptcy does not mean you will automatically lose your house, furniture or vehicle. If any assets are given as collateral there are usually two things that are looked at. First, is there any equity, or excess value if the asset were sold and the loan associated with that asset is paid off. The trustee is only interested in the equity, or excess value, of an asset. If you have equity in an asset, you may be able to settle the value with the trustee. Second, are the loan payments up to date? The Bankruptcy Act prevents a secured creditor from seizing an asset if the loan payments are all up to date. The act of filing for bankruptcy cannot be treated as an act of default on the loan. This is what we have been doing for over 30 years and can certainly handle the process on your behalf and make the stressful phone calls and letters stop right away.
HOW ARE THE LICENSED INSOLVENCY TRUSTEE'S FEES PAID?
First of all, it’s important to know that everything begins with a free consultation where we discuss your options. If you don’t like what you hear, you can walk away without paying a cent. Now, if you decide to move forward, the fees of a Licensed Insolvency Trustees are set by federal legislation. In some cases the cost of bankruptcy may be covered from funds received by the Trustee during the administration of the bankruptcy. The money may come from the sale of certain assets, payments that are being made to keep certain assets, income tax refunds, monthly payments based on surplus income (in some situations a monthly payment is required based on a formula set by government legislation), etc. Another option for payment includes the person declaring bankruptcy making affordable monthly payments to the trustee. These payments are geared to income and family responsibilities - and are also based on guidelines issued by the Superintendent of Bankruptcy. Arrangements can normally be made to fit these payments, if any, within your monthly budget.
HOW DOES WORKING WITH A TRUSTEE DIFFER FROM
A DEBT SETTLEMENT COMPANY?
Great question! There is a big difference. Licensed Insolvency Trustees are strictly regulated by the Federal Government and our fees are set based on government legislation. On the other hand, debt settlement companies are not regulated by government and most often they charge very large up-front fees before any work is even started. Quite often, we see people coming to us looking for help, after they’ve already been to the debt settlement companies and paid the large fees. There’s no need for this to happen. We can help.
ARE MY STUDENT LOANS COVERED UNDER MY BANKRUPTCY?
If someone has been out of school for more than 7 years, filing a bankruptcy will eliminate student loan debt. If they haven’t met the 7-year benchmark, but did finish school more than 5 years ago, they may apply to the bankruptcy court and request that an order be issued to eliminate the student loan debt. Whether the court will issue such an order will depend on the following factors:
Have you acted in good faith in connection with your student loan debts? The court may look at the following matters:
• Was the money used for the purposes of the loan?
• Did you complete your education?
• Did you derive any economic benefit from your education?
• Have you made reasonable efforts to repay the loan?
• Have you made use of available options, such as interest relief to reduce the burden of the loan?
• Will you continue to experience financial difficulty to such an extent that you won’t be able to pay the student loan debt?
WHAT ARE A LICENSED INSOLVENCY TRUSTEE’S PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS?
Licensed Insolvency Trustees are licensed by the Superintendent of Bankruptcy, a federal government agency. All trustees have gone through a rigorous study program and series of examinations before he/she can be successfully licensed.
Most Licensed Insolvency Trustees also hold the professional designation of Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional (CIRP) and have a professional accounting designation, such as a CA, CGA or CMA. Therefore, Licensed Insolvency Trustees are extremely well qualified to provide sound advice to individuals facing financial difficulty.
WHETHER IT’S A CONSUMER PROPOSAL OR A BANKRUTPCY,
WILL I HAVE TO MEET MY CREDITORS?
Probably not. Although there are situations where a meeting of creditors may be necessary, it is very rare that you will have to meet with your creditors. Should there be a meeting with your creditors, the Trustee will also be present at that meeting.
LET'S GET YOU BACK ON TRACK!
Call us now for your FREE consultation
THE FONTAINE DIFFERENCE
WHY CHOOSE FONTAINE