For people who have debt problems, one of the best debt solutions to escape such a predicament is to file a consumer proposal. In the first quarter of 2022, the number of consumer insolvency filings reached 23,153.
Despite this high number of filings, there are still folks out there who don’t know about consumer proposals. If you’re one of those folks, you better read this article to learn more about what a consumer proposal is, how it works, and what happens when your consumer proposal is complete.
What is a Consumer Proposal?
A consumer proposal is a legal option filed with a licensed insolvency trustee to settle your debts. This debt settlement option is different from filing for bankruptcy.
In a consumer proposal, you still have to pay your debt, but only a percentage of the total of it. You may also have the benefit of extending the repayment term, depending on the agreement between you and your creditors.
Your licensed insolvency trustee will look at your financial circumstances and assess what percentage of your total debt you can repay. When you are successful in repaying that portion of your debt, you’ll be forgiven and have a fresh start in living a debt-free life.
What Happens After Completing Your Consumer Proposal?
As mentioned earlier, completion of the terms of your consumer proposal will release you from your debts. In such a case, you’ll be given a Certificate of Full Performance as documentary evidence that you have accomplished the consumer proposal’s terms.
The consumer proposal administrator or the licensed insolvency trustee will also be discharged from the legal process after fulfilling his/her duties. Here’s a rundown of the work of an insolvency trustee once the consumer proposal is completed.
● Your insolvency trustee must review and admit the claims of your creditors.
● The insolvency trustee should conduct a final accounting of the total funds received in the proposal. In other words, he/she must prepare a Statement of Receipts and Disbursements.
● Your insolvency trustee should distribute the payments collected in the consumer proposal to your eligible creditors.
Important Documents You Should Keep
There are documents that will be provided to you, and you need to keep them throughout the consumer proposal process. These are legal papers; thus, you should ensure that you don’t lose them.
Notice of Consumer Proposal
These are the initial papers that you’ll obtain once your consumer proposal is approved. You’ll see in these documents the starting date of the consumer proposal, the name of your creditors, and the settlement offer you’re proposing to them.
Certificate of Full Performance
Once you’ve started your consumer proposal, the entities or persons you’re indebted to shouldn’t continue collecting payments from you because you’re now in a debt settlement process.
Then, after you’ve met the terms of the consumer proposal, you’ll get a Certificate of Full Performance, which shows that you’re now debt forgiven.
Statement of Receipts and Disbursements
The Statement of Receipts and Disbursements is the final consumer proposal document you’ll receive. This document states the important dates, a final listing of the creditors included in the disbursement of your consumer proposal, and the amount each of them received.
Inform your insolvency trustee if you change your email or mailing address before you obtain your Statement of Receipts and Disbursements.
What to Do if You Lose these Documents?
In unfortunate circumstances, such as losing these important documents, make sure to contact the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy or your licensed insolvency trustee. Inform them that you’ve lost your papers and you want copies of these documents.
Does a Consumer Proposal Reflect on Your Credit Report?
Yes, a consumer proposal can affect your credit history. Once you file this debt settlement process, it will be recorded six years later on your credit profile. If you’ve fulfilled a consumer proposal’s terms, you’ll receive the credit report three years after the completion.
If you want to get rid of your bad debt and rebuild your credit rating simultaneously, consider applying for a consumer proposal. Follow these steps if you want to rebuild your credit after the completion of your consumer proposal.
● Go to major credit bureaus and request copies of your credit profile.
● Look for any error in your credit report. If there are errors, make sure to take the necessary actions to fix them.
● Don’t be late with your bill payments.
● Take out a loan or a secured credit card, and make sure that you pay what you owe on time.
How to Fix Errors in Your Credit Report?
It’s really a pain in the neck to see that your credit reports have inaccuracies or errors. Such things can be a hindrance to you in starting a life free from debts. But stop worrying because you can fix those errors on your credit reports.
● You can ask the major credit bureaus to correct the inaccuracies in your credit history by filling out a Credit Investigation Request Form.
● Don’t forget the necessary documents and mail them with the Credit Investigation Request Form to the major credit bureaus.
Securing Credit After Completing Your Consumer Proposal
If you need to apply for loans or credit cards, you can do it once your consumer proposal is completed. However, it’s not right away that you can avail of the affordable rates. It’s also crucial that you’re satisfied with the credit card or loan terms. Here are the types of credit that you can get after your consumer proposal.
A lot of folks who have completed their consumer proposals get a secured credit card for essential purchases. You can apply for this type of credit at favourable rates a year after your debts are settled.
One or two years after completing your consumer proposal, you can already apply for a car loan with an advantageous interest rate. There are also specialized auto loan providers who can approve your loan application while you’re on your consumer proposal.
You can obtain a house loan two years after accomplishing the terms of your consumer proposal. There are also subprime lenders that can approve your mortgage application during or one year after your debt settlement.