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Resolving Your Canadian Debt When You No Longer Live in Canada

There are times when debtors have accumulated debt in Canada but are no longer residing here. They may have left Canada for employment opportunities or family matters and are currently living in another country. Often, these debtors would like to resolve their Canadian debt issues, especially if they are planning on coming back to Canada at some point in the future. It could be out of a desire to simply resolve outstanding debt and reach finality in financial affairs in the country they used to live. Subject to meeting other eligibility criteria applicable to any debtor, there is no express requirement for the debtors to either have Canadian citizenship or be present in Canada for the purpose of filing insolvency proceedings, whether it is a consumer proposal or a bankruptcy.

Role Of Licensed Insolvency Trustee

It is a role of a Licensed Insolvency Trustee / Proposal Administrator to review each particular debtor’s situation to determine if the debtor can file for protection under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, a Canadian set of laws regulating these proceedings, and advise and help the debtor to take the necessary steps for doing so. The Insolvency Trustee is required to obtain from the relevant Canadian government authority, special permission to proceed with a proposal/bankruptcy for the debtor who is not currently present in Canada. The trustee then would provide the debtor with the documents which the debtor would have to execute in the presence of a notary in the county where she/he is currently located. Upon the execution, the documents would have to be forwarded back to the trustee for processing. In lieu of meeting the debtor in person, the trustee would utilize a phone meeting in order to advise the debtor of all aspects of the proceedings imposed by law.

Power of Attorney

Alternatively, the debtors can appoint a Power of Attorney (“POA”) in order to assign the debtor into a bankruptcy or file a proposal on their behalf in Canada. The POA would have to be carefully worded in order to provide proper authorization. A legal professional preparing the POA would have to be consulted to ensure the objective to deal with property is addressed.

Attending credit counselling meetings from abroad

The counselling meetings applicable in both proceedings may be authorized to be conducted via telephone conference instead of face to face. There could potentially be other meetings triggered by the process. However, in many cases debtor’s absence could be dealt with and/or excused. For example, the meeting could be held by phone conferencing; the debtors can provide written authorization to do certain things; the debtors can act through a representative. If you are in debt and it is apparent that you no longer can manage it or if you are being legally pursued for these debts, it is your first and the right thing to do to contact a licensed insolvency trustee for professional advice and guidance. There is always a solution to your debt problem.